15 things to do in Dubai this weekend
How much festive feeling can we fit into three days?
It’s officially the silly season, and that means our calendars are jam-packed with festive events.
But our motto is there’s always room for more – and this weekend Dubai is putting on some amazing races, festivals, parties and feasts that we know you won’t want to miss.
Here are 15 things to do in Dubai this weekend…
Thursday December 14
1. Enjoy drinks for Dhs4 at this Marina party spot
Marina party spot Societe is throwing a fourth birthday party with a bargain deal, and offering four hours of selected drinks at Dhs4. Doors open early at 8pm with the deal lasting till 12am, but the party will carry on until the early hours with a setlist of classic 80s, 90s and 00s hits.
Marina Byblos Hotel, Dubai Marina, 8pm to 3am, free entry. Tel: 050 699 3191. More info on More info on website
2. Watch the Beach Polo
The annual Beach Polo tournament returns to Dubai this Thursday and Friday at their brand new, purpose-built venue at Sky Dive Dubai. This year’s players hail from countries such as Argentina, Germany and the UK, and four teams will go head-to-head in a two-day battle for the much-coveted trophy. There will also be plenty of food and drink stalls, and an after-party with DJs spinning until late.
Beach Polo Cup, Sky Dive Dubai, 7.30pm onwards, Thurs Dec 14 and 4.30pm onwards Fri Dec 15, from Dhs60. Tel: (04) 340 8589. More info on website
3. Flip Out at a winter festival
Flip Out Dubai is set to launch a Winterfest Flip The Lights for the holidays, mixing together a festive playlist, as well as club lights and snow. In keeping with the festive theme, you’ll see more than 200 interconnected trampolines transformed into a winter wonderland, where you will be able to participate in a snowball fight, Christmas fancy dress and competitions.
Flip Out, Al Quoz 3, Warehouse #5 Dubai, 4pm to 10pm, Dec 14 and Dec 21, Dhs80 per hour. Tel: (600) 567 568. More info on website
4. Get on stage at an open mic festival
The Junction is searching for budding performers to take part in their three-day open mic festival this weekend. There’s no registration fee, and participants are invited to perform a five-minute comedic piece for audiences across the Thursday and Friday events, with the Gala Final held on Saturday December 16.
The Junction, Alserkal Avenue, Al Quoz, 7.30pm onwards, Dec 14 to 16, free participation, tickets from Dhs40 . Tel: (04) 338 8525. More info on Facebook
5. Head to the cinema for the brand new Star Wars
Star Wars fans have been eagerly awaiting the release of The Last Jedi and you’ll be able to catch it in Dubai Cinemas from tomorrow. It’s the second film in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, following Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2015. For a top-notch cinema experience, head to the Reel Cinemas new Dolby suite in Dubai Marina Mall, which has elevated sound and picture quality.
Various cinemas across Dubai including Reel Cinemas, Dubai Marina Mall, from December 14. More info on website
Friday December 15
6. Party at a lively new Downtown brunch
There’s a new Downtown party brunch launching this Friday at Treehouse by the same people behind the popular We Brunch. Hidden is taking over the Taj hotel every Friday from 1pm till 4pm with both indoor and outdoor seating. It comes complete with live cooking stations from BBQ to sushi, a variety of cocktails, and an after-party from 4pm till 9pm.
Hidden Brunch, Taj Dubai, 1pm to 4pm, Dhs299 soft, Dhs350 house, Dhs399 sparkling. Tel: (058) 827 2763. More info on website
7. Find your zen with a free yoga class
As part of Al Serkal Avenue’s Canada 150 celebrations, Lululemon brand ambassadors Neha Duseja and Nitai Krishna will be hosting a free yoga class at 10am at The Yard. it’s suitable for all levels, and will be a mix of asana and pranayma exercises through the 90-minute class. Mats are provided.
The Yard, Al Serkal Avenue, Al Quoz, 10am to 11.30am, Fri Dec 15, free. More info on Facebook
8. Get festive at Fort Island
Madinat Jumeirah will welcome back its annual Festive Market this December from the 15th to 27th. The 1,750 square metre winter wonderland will feature a German-style festive market, as well as rides on an abra boat with Santa, dozens of slides and games, a North Pole train for the little ones and a giant snowball zone. New this year will be a shimmering interactive LED Christmas tree and daily appearances from Santa himself at 5pm and 7pm.
Madinat Jumeirah, Dec 15 to 27, Sun to Weds, 3pm to 1am, Thurs to Sat 12pm to 1am free entry. Tel: (04) 366 8888. More info on website
9. Dine for half price fountain-side
Serafina, Souk Al Bahar, Downtown Dubai, Fri and Sat 12pm to 3pm. Tel: (04) 363 8447. More info on website
11. Spend the day at a family fete in Sports City
Dubai Sports City’s ‘December Frosty Fete’ is back on Friday December 15. The free entry evening will have lots of children’s activities, including play areas, festive-themed activities and a Christmas market, as well as event day discounts at all participating Canal Residence Wests outlets, and Christmas movies shown on the big screen for the whole family to enjoy.
Canal Residence West, Dubai Sports City, 4pm to 8pm, Fri Dec 15, free. Tel: (04) 425 1111. More info on website
Saturday December 16
11. Spend Saturday morning at a festive market
Every Saturday, The Sum Of Us is serving up a sunrise market from their front doorstep, and this week it’s a festive eddition. The morning market will play host to an array of local arts and craft vendors, with Dubai Garden Centre will be offering a walk-in festive table decoration workshop. There will also be baked treats from Rise&Dawn Bakehouse and Encounter Coffee.
The Sum of Us, Burj Al Salam Tower, Sheikh Zayed Road, Saturday 9am onwards. Tel: (056) 445 7526. More info on website
12. Get creative at the Sandbox Sessions
For their final community event of the year, Joe and Sons is launching the Sandbox Sessions this Saturday. Bringing together creatives from music, poetry, design, photography and film backgrounds, it’s a great afternoon for meeting and mingling. There will be live music, spoken word and short films, and it’s free entry.
Warehouse 9 & 10, 6b Street, Al Quoz 3, 3pm to 7pm, free entry. Tel: (04) 341 5339. More info on Facebook
13. Roam Dubai Safari for free
Dubai Safari finally threw open its gates on Tuesday, in what it is describing as a ‘soft opening’. As the park is not 100 per cent finished yet, any guests who visit over the next few days will enjoy free entry. It’s got four villages, 250 species and more than 2500 animals to check out and comes with a petting zoo for the little ones, drive-thru tiger, crocodile and hippo exhibits and an aviary.
Dubai Safari, Al Warquaa 5 district, near Dragon Mart, daily 9am to 5pm, free during soft opening. More info on website
14. Sing along at Dubai Opera
A family concert of carols and much-loved Christmas classics performed by London Concert Orchestra Show Band, Capital Voices and West End soloists has a three-show stint at the Dubai Opera this weekend. Enjoy a classic singalong to all your favourite festive hits in the stunning setting.
Dubai Opera, Downtown Dubai, 11am and 3pm, Sat Dec 16, from Dhs250. Tel: (04) 440 8888. More info on website
15. Gather the girls for a Spartan Race
XDubai has partnered with Spartan Arabia for the first-ever women-only Spartan Race in the MENA region. Happening this Saturday at Dubai’s Jebel Ali Race Course, the XDubai Spartan Race will be a 5km, 20 obstacle, open sprint race. The race is exclusively open for female participants, but all spectators are welcome to cheer them on.
Jebel Ali Race Course, Jebel Ali, 9am to 12pm, Sat Dec 16, 80USD. More info on website