Get cultured: Best traditional iftars in Dubai
What’s on has details of the most authentic iftars in Dubai. Get cultured at a family-style meal or enjoy a traditional spread in Arabic surroundings.
Ramadan is the perfect time to learn more about the UAE’s heritage and culture, and attending an iftar is one of the greatest ways to immerse yourself in its traditions. Of course, with so many iftars available in the UAE, it’s often hard to pick the right one to try. Here’s a selection that either recreates an authentic Arabic atmosphere, gives back to the community, or teaches you about Muslim culture.
Bab Al Shams
Head to the desert for a traditional iftar in this fortress-themed resort. Tuck into an Arabian buffet in an air-conditioned marquee, and tap your food to an oud player and tanoura dancer. A fun coup de théâtre is the live camel caravan and horse show on the surrounding dunes.
Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa, near Dubai International Endurance City, sunset to 11.30pm, Dhs225. Tel: (04) 8096194. Taxi: Bab Al Shams. meydanhotels.com
Ramadan is a time for giving and a percentage of the price of this traditional Arabic buffet goes to Operation Smile, a charity helping children with facial deformities.
Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, sunset to 9pm, Dhs145. Tel: (04) 3174515. Taxi: SZR at D71 junction. dusit.com
Fairmont The Palm
Syrian chef Salloum is cooking up iftar treats at Flow Kitchen this Ramadan. Expect ouzi lamb, live shawarma stations and a variety of desserts and juices.
Fairmont The Palm, The Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, from sunset, Dhs185. Tel: (04) 4573457. Taxi: Fairmont The Palm. fairmont.com
Enjoy a stimulating menu filled with Levantine, Middle Eastern and Moroccan dishes. With everything from dates to camel milk ice cream, this is an authentic iftar with a theatrical twist.
Wafi Mall, Wafi Fort Complex, opposite Raffles Hotel, Dubai, from sunset, Dhs180. Tel: (04) 7092500. Taxi: Wafi Mall. qbara.ae
Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding
If you’re looking to gain an insight into the real spirit of Ramadan, an evening spent at the SMCCU is the most important traditional iftar to try. Not only will you break the fast in a traditional home setting in Al Fahidi Historical Neighbourhood but you get the chance to learn about the UAE’s culture and traditions. You’ll also get the chance to visit a mosque.
Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding,Al Fahidi, Dubai, starts 15 minutes before the call to prayer, Dhs135. Tel: (04) 3536666. Metro: Al Fahidi. cultures.ae