Things to do in Abu Dhabi this weekend
What’s On has a full list of all the things to do in Abu Dhabi this weekend, including brunch, deals, sports, entertainment, new openings.
You know that moment on a Thursday afternoon when your work buddy asks what you’re doing this weekend and your mind goes blank? Well worry no more, friends, because What’s On has the perfect solution, whatever mood you are in.
The third annual Festival of Falconry will see over 800 falconers from over 80 countries come together to celebrate these birds. The showcase will feature several competitions, exhibitions, workshops and educational activities and live shows every day. Don’t miss the Grand Parade of Nations at the arena to see participants dressed in their national dress.
Al Forsan International Sports Resort, Sas Al Nakhl, Abu Dhabi, until Dec 13, free entry. Tel: (02) 5568555. Taxi: Al Forsan International Sports Resort. falconryfestival.com
St Regis Saadiyat Tree lighting
For some holiday cheer, check out this tree lighting ceremony on Saadiyat Island. You’ll see carol singers serenade the crowd while a special someone in a sleigh stops by.
St Regis Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, 6.30pm, free. Tel: (02) 4988888. Taxi: St Regis Saadiyat Island. stregis.com
Get arty at Manarat Al Saadiyat
Culture vultures should visit Artscape: An Evening of Light and Music tonight to learn more about the current exhibition on display at Manarat Al Saadiyat, Seeing Through Light. The evening will host a variety of workshops and activities inspired by the exhibition including an interactive light and photography workshop led by Sara Al Mazrouei and Isra Al Saabri that will see participants use light to draw and write. Hassan Khan, Fatima Al Qadiri and Shadi Megallaa will perform a selection of live electronic music at Fanr Garden from 8pm onwards.
Saadiyat Cultural District, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, 6pm to 12am. Tel: (02) 6575800. Taxi: Manarat Al Saadiyat. abudhabiartfair.ae
Lighting the tree at Al Maha Arjaan
Pine-ing for Christmas? This annual tree lighting ceremony will feature a children’s choir, gingerbread house and a special appearance from the big man in red.
Al Maha Arjaan by Rotana, Al Zahiyah, Abu Dhabi, 7pm to 9pm. Tel: (02) 4180000. Taxi: Al Maha Arjaan, Hamdan Street. rotana.com
Sing along to Christmas carols
Can’t stop caroling? Then check out this open-air Crooners at Christmas concert in the B Lounge, where you can sing along to festive favourites from the likes of Frank Sinatra, Bing Crosby, Dean Martin and Nat King Cole.
Corniche Road, Abu Dhabi, 7pm to 11pm, free. Tel: (02) 6773333. Taxi: Sheraton Corniche. sheratonabudhabihotel.com
Traders and Shangri-La tree lighting
Two tree lightings in one? This Thursday Shangri-La and Traders Hotel will be hosting special ceremonies to welcome the festive season. Traders will kick things off at 6pm and Shangri-La will begin at 7.30pm. Don’t miss the in-house choir serenading guests to really get you in the spirit.
Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, Khor Al Maqta, Abu Dhabi. Tel: (02) 5098555. Taxi: Shangri-la Qaryat Al Beri. shangri-la.com
Check out the newest race at YMC
Race season isn’t over just yet. Petrol heads will enjoy the launch of the new TRD 86 Cup – Yas Marina Circuit’s first single-make championship. Featuring two rounds of races, fans can also catch the action backstage, as there will be open access to the Paddock, team garages and starting grid.
Yas Marina Circuit, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, until Dec 13. Tel: (800) 927. Taxi: Yas Marina Circuit. yasmarinacircuit.com
Volvo Ocean Race arrives
The F1 of sailing is finally here! In-port celebrations will be taking place on the Breakwater at the Corniche as the free to visit Destination Village opens to the public. Watersports, special heritage displays and plenty of family-friendly entertainment will be on offer.
Volvo Ocean Race, Breakwater, Corniche, Abu Dhabi, until Jan 3. Taxi: Corniche, Breakwater. volvooceanrace abudhabi.com
ABBA Tribute Show
ABBA GOLD, a European tribute show, will be at Abu Dhabi City Golf Club tonight for a one-night-only gig that’ll take you back to the 1970s. Complete with costumes, the band will be singing hits like Dancing Queen, Mama Mia, and Super Trouper.
Abu Dhabi City Golf Club, Al Mushrif, 19th & 24th Street, Abu Dhabi, 7.30pm, from Dhs100. Tel: (02) 4459600. Taxi: Abu Dhabi City Golf Club. adcitygolf.ae
Festive fun at Le Méridien
Sing some carols and nibble on complimentary roasted chestnuts at the Centre Garden. Once the tree is lit, catch a live performance from Trio del Soul.
Le Méridien, Al Zahiyah, Abu Dhabi, 6pm. Tel:(02) 6446666. Taxi: Le Méridien, Tourist Club. starwoodhotels.com
1990s night at O1NE
Remember when the likes of the Spice Girls, Nirvana and Whitney Houston topped the music charts? For a blast from the past head to O1NE Yas Island for their themed 1990s night.
O1NE, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, 11pm till late. Tel: (052) 7888111. Taxi: O1NE, Yas Island. o1neyasisland.com
Dance at Creamfields
Put on your dancing shoes! This nine-hour marathon of non-stop music will see DJ headliners Hardwell, Afrojack, Adam Beyer and Marco Carola keep you moving all night. Other names on the decks include Avidbold & Angelo, Asphyxia, Greg Gow, maDJam, Genie & Stacktraxxx and Mr. Mr.
du Arena, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, Dhs150 to 550. Tel: (800) 86823. Taxi: du Arena. thinkflash.ae
Blue Planet Live
As part of the Volvo Ocean Race, the capital will host Blue Planet Live, a concert performed by Oscar-nominated UK composer George Fenton. With the orchestra floating on a stage right on the Abu Dhabi coastline and a ten-metre-wide screen showing footage from the award winning BBC documentary series – this concert is a first for the Gulf Region.
Corniche, Abu Dhabi, Dhs300, until Dec 13. Taxi: Breakwater, Corniche. volvooceanraceabudhabi.com
Sheikh Zayed Heritage Festival (LAST CHANCE)
With National Day come and gone, you can still celebrate the Emirates with a visit to this festival. The event includes exhibitions and entertainment that document the history of the country, from its origins in 1971 to its modern-day achievements. It takes place at the Al Wathba camel track.
Sheikh Zayed Festival, Al Wathba, Western Region, Abu Dhabi. Tel: (800) 555. szhf.ae
Gulf 12 Hours
The fourth edition of Gulf 12 Hours will see more than 80 cars participate in this endurance race around Yas Marina Circuit. Split into two rounds of six hours of racing, this event will feature both daylight and floodlit runs on the track.
Yas Marina Circuit, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, Dhs50. Tel: (800) 927. Taxi: Yas Marina Circuit. yasmarinacircuit.com
Rooftop Rhythms Arabia
Enjoy this special poetry open-mic night for Arabic speakers by Rooftop Rhythms Arabia.
The Space, twofour54, Khalifa Park, Abu Dhabi, 6pm to 8pm, Dhs35. Taxi: twofour54, Khalifa Park. facebook.com/ rooftoprhythmsAD
Santa Chase at Westin
Be sure to put on your racing shoes and head over to this hotel for its annual Santa Chase on the greens. The first one to catch the big chap in red wins a present. Afterwards, at sunset, a tree lighting ceremony will take place on the lawn.
Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa, Sas Al Nakhl, Abu Dhabi, 4pm to 6pm, free. Tel: (02) 6169999. Taxi: Westin Abu Dhabi.
Every Saturday check out Puesta Del Sol, where you can sample a traditional paella at De La Costa in the Saadiyat Beach Club. From 5pm to 11pm enjoy the traditional Flamenco performances, dancers and Spanish guitarist. After 7pm, the main act will perform Latin, house, Brazilian, funk and soulful beats.
Saadiyat Beach Club, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, 5pm to 11pm, Dhs99 to Dhs120. Tel: (02) 6563500. Taxi: Saadiyat Beach Club. Saadiyatbeachclub.ae
Get classical at this concert
CelloNation: Many Voices – One Concert will see 25 cellists in the New York University Abu Dhabi Cello Ensemble perform a selection of works from Pachelbel to Heavy Metal Band Apocalyptica. Directed by Gwyneth Bravo, the concert will also feature guest cellists Jameson Platte and pianist Matthew Quayle.
NYU Campus, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, 8pm. Taxi: NYU Campus Saadiyat Island. nyuad.nyu.edu
Think you’re the next big thing? Then pop down to this open casting call for Miranda Davidson Studios. Looking for fresh faces to work in television, film and advertising all are welcome – from extras, actors, models and performers young and old.
The Space, twofour54, Khalifa Park, Abu Dhabi, 9am to 6pm. Tel: (02) 6573333. Taxi: twofour54, Khalifa Park.