21 things to do this Valentine's Day in Dubai
No plans yet to impress your other half this Valentine’s Day?
Well you’ve got exactly a week to get your act together, as V Day is next Sunday. Here’s a look at the best deals in town (not all of them are on Sunday night either, just in case you’re busy then).
Take your other half on a European tour without leaving Dubai
1. Bà Restaurant & Lounge
This eight-course Valentine’s dinner will be all about fine Chinese fare: you can nestle outside in a private (and romantic cabana) for Dhs1,588 per couple, or be sat outside (on a normal table) for Dhs888 per couple. The meal includes a bottle of grape.
February 12 to 14
Fairmont The Palm, Palm Jumeirah, 7.30pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 457 3457. fairmont.com
Yannick Alléno will treat gourmet connoisseurs to a culinary journey at Stay with a menu that features langoustines from Brittany, Irish beef tenderloin and slow-cooked monkfish. With three Michelin stars at Alléno-helmed restaurants, this is sure to be a gastronomic treat of epic proportions.
One&Only Palm Jumeirah, The Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, 7pm to 11pm, Dhs1,360 per couple. Tel: (04) 4401030. Taxi: The Palm Jumeirah. oneandonlythepalm.com
Experience a taste of Italy at one of JBR’s favourite spots, Bice. Choose between the a la carte menu or from a three-course set menu, which includes restaurant favourites veal filet and the vegetarian risotto with truffle.
The Hilton, JBR, Dubai, 7pm to 11.30pm, Dhs900 per couple. Tel: (04) 3182520. Taxi: The Walk. hilton.com
Step into the kitchen with Armani’s resident chef Alessandro and whip up a feast while learning the tricks of the trade. You’ll be guided through the creation of a three-course meal with an aphrodisiacal theme. The dishes include foie gras with chocolate pepperoncino, anelli pasta with red mullet and seared lobster with white asparagus. Later you can enjoy the fruits of your labour with specially paired drinks.
Lobby Level, Burj Khalifa, Downtown Dubai, Dubai, 11am to 3pm, Dhs1,000 per couple. Tel: (04) 8883888. Metro: Burj Khalifa/Dubai Mall. dubai.armanihotels.com
5. Forty Four
To mark its location, new European spot Forty Four will be serving a four-course feast including lobster salad, veal medallion and a selection of cheeses with more than a touch of authentic French cuisine. Here’s a tip: ask for a table by the window – your date will be more than impressed by the view.
Warwick Hotel, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dhs544 per couple. Tel: (04) 5069890. Metro: Financial Centre. fortyfourdubai.com
6. Ruth’s Chris
If you’re after the ultimate feast, try the Valentine’s menu at Ruth’s Chris steakhouse inside The Address Dubai Marina. The set menu includes a glass of champagne. Starters are seperated into seafood and meat options, and for the main courses there are three options: beef filet with black truffle, New York strip and ahi tuna. The mains are served with generous portions of roasted Brussels sprouts, pan-roasted cremini mushrooms and fresh asparagus served with hollandaise sauce. Be sure to leave room for the dessert – an extremely rich cheesecake served in a pretty heart-shaped crust.
February 11 to 14
The Address Dubai Marina, Dubai, 6pm, Dhs1,380 per couple. Tel: (04) 4549538. Taxi: The Address Dubai Marina. ruthschris.ae
Füme’s cuisine cupids have created a special menu – served at both branches – infused with love, passion and hearts (metaphorically speaking). Let us show you how romantic a sharing style set menu can be from only AED 222 per person.
Valentine’s Day for foodies needn’t always break the bank – Fümé is offering a special sharing-style set menu for just Dhs222 per person. Choices will include Italian burrata with strawberries & balsamic, Steak tartar, King shrimp gratin, Korean lamb cutlets and a pink éclair. Also, the branch at Pier 7 is offering the same menu for Dhs299 (with drinks).
Pier 7, Dubai Marina and Manzil, Downtown Dubai. fume-eatery.com.
When it’s necessary to go big or go home…
8. The St Regis Dubai
Got a cool Dhs140,000 going spare? Then this will be an easy Valentine’s Day win. You’ll kick-start your two-day staycation at St Regis with a pickup in a Bentley Flying Spur before being treated to an aerial view of the city. The romance continues at the hotel with a pearl earring and necklace set from Dhamani presented to the lady along with some posh skincare goodies from Swiss Perfection Cellular Skincare. Other highlights include a 90-minute couple’s massage, a five-course dinner in the suite and a lazy champagne breakfast, all aided by a 24-hour butler service.
Al Habtoor City, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, Dhs140,216. Tel: (04) 4355500. Taxi: Al Habtoor City. stregis.com
9. Dubai Marina Yacht Club
Take your romantic meal for two to another level with a three-hour cruise through Dubai Marina on a luxury 43-foot yacht. You’ll be treated to a three-course dinner with a bottle of champagne along with house beverages. You’ll also get a voucher for a 50-minute Balinese massage at The Address, Dubai Marina.
February 12 to 14
Dubai Marina Yacht Club, Dubai, Dhs7,500 per couple. Tel: (04) 3627900. Taxi: Yacht Club. dubaimarinayachtclub.com
THE CASUAL COUPLE
Fixed menus, overpriced drinks and another couple at each elbow not your thing? Try one of these
10. Freshly Ground Sounds
Photo: Dushi Mahesh
On the Saturday before Valentine’s Day (13th), Freshly Ground Sounds is hosting a free live music afternoon called For The Love of Music iii. This will really impress a date if they’re more indie than they are D&G. The setting is the gorgeous and leafy The Farm at Al Barari – expect great regional tunes, a nice crowd and a wee market too. RSVP here to secure your spot.
The Farm, Al Barari, Emirates Road, 3pm to 7pm, free entry. More info on Facebook.
The cheese and cured meats here are exemplary, and this Cave-style bar is putting on a special menu for V Day that includes a glass of crisp bubbles, a three-course tasting menu and a fondue. Yum.
Conrad Dubai, Trade Centre area, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai. Dhs495 per couple. Tel: (04) 444 7111. conraddubai.com
Pretend you are both Picasso and have some fun at Iris Dubai’s wine and paint night, a quirky alternative to dinner for two. Instead of a standard rose, each guest will be given a white canvas on arrival before being shown the ropes by an art expert. Two glasses of wine will also be thrown in as part of the package, and you can take home your masterpiece at the end of the evening.
The Oberoi Hotel, Business Bay, Dubai, 7.30pm to 10.30pm, Dhs738 per couple. Tel: (056) 9511442. Metro: Business Bay. irisdubai.com
13. Al Badia Golf Club Dubai
Celebrate your special evening with a moonlit picnic experience at Al Badia’s popular picnic spot. Kick off your shoes and relax under the stars with a bottle of champagne and tasty food as a live guitarist sets the mood.
Festival City, Dubai, 7pm to 11pm, Dhs580 per couple. Tel: (04) 7011127. Taxi: Al Badia Golf Club. diningdfc.com
14. Vida Downtown Dubai
Charm your loved one as you both enjoy a unique nighttime picnic under the stars while indulging in the restaurant’s favourite culinary treats. Sit back and relax over a candle-lit picnic overlooking Vida’s glamorous outdoor pool while dining in one of the beautiful, white poolside cabanas.
3in1, Vida Downtown Dubai, Dubai, 7.30pm to 10.30pm, Dhs499 per couple. Tel: (04) 4286888. Metro: Burj Khalifa/Dubai Mall. vida-hotels.com
15. Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club
Fancy a romantic yet family-friendly brunch with some jolly good entertainment thrown in? The Valentine’s Day Cup Polo at the Dubai Polo & Equestrian Club is a family-fun day affair with polo matches, spa treatments for the ladies and plenty of children’s entertainment, all wrapped up in a special three-hour brunch.
Al Qudra Road, opposite Arabian Ranches, Dubai, 1pm to 4pm, Dhs395 with house drinks, Dhs565 with champagne. Tel: (04) 3618111. Taxi: Beside Studio City. poloclubdubai.com
16. Oscar’s Vine Society
A seven-course degustation menu can be shared between two along with a delicious bottle of Casillero at Oscar’s Vine Society. This will be a cosy and relaxed dinner out (and is a great deal at Dhs500 per couple for the meal and the grape).
February 11 to 14
Crowne Plaza Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road, 6pm to midnight. Tel: 800 276 963. crowneplaza.com.
DINE WITH FRIENDS
No partner? No Problem. Let your pals be your Valentine
We love the gorgeous terrace at this bar – it’s actually very romantic, but on Sunday February 14 they’re hosting a Cupidita’s Night for the un-paired among you. Ladies will receive three complimentary cocktails, and there will be canapés passed around throughout the night. Also, women will receive keys and lads locks, and throughout the night you have to find the person that ‘fits’.
Le Royal Meridien Beach Resort & Spa, Dubai Marina. 7pm to 1am, free entry. maya-dubai.com.
18. [u]bk – Urban Bar And Kitchen
This laid back spot is hosting a ‘Single’s Awareness Day’ two days before Valentine’s Day featuring cupids, rodeo bulls and photo booths – there will be a BBQ grilling wagyu burgers, chicken drumsticks, chargrilled veges and more, as well as bottomless selected beverages. From about 3.30pm a live band will liven things up and wake you up from your post-scoff sleepiness.
Mövenpick Hotel Jumeirah Lakes Towers. 12.30pm to 3.30pm, Dhs250 per person with food and selected beverages. Tel: (04) 438 0000. movenpick.com.
Grab your friends and enjoy a tapas feast with cocktails at Spirito. Guests choose five small plates including Cajun shrimp and polenta fries. The Brazilian atmosphere is guaranteed to knock any Valentine’s blues on the head.
Media One Hotel, Media City, Dubai, 6pm to midnight, Dhs225 per person. Tel: (04) 4212679. Metro: Nakheel. spirito.ae
Dinner gets a twist with the introduction of speed plating. Ladies grab a box and fill it with canapés, before being paired with a partner who picks the box that appeals to them. Could love blossom over your foodie faves?
Wasl Square, Dubai, 7pm, Dhs140 per person. Tel: (04) 3884006. Taxi: Wasl Square. bookmunchcafe.com
21. The Palace
Let The Palace’s resident tea sommelier guide you and your friends through the extensive list of tea infusions, which are accompanied by some tasty chocolate-themed nibbles.
Until February 29
The Palace Downtown Dubai, Dubai, Wed, Fri and Sat 2pm to 6pm, Dhs175. Tel: (04) 4287805. Metro: Burj Khalifa/Dubai Mall. theaddress.com