Four pool options, recently renovated villa rooms and the best breakfast spread we’ve ever seen…

With summer temperatures already creeping up, we’re looking to plan ourselves a few staycations, and with some great deals to take advantage of at some of the emirates’ best resorts, who needs to travel overseas?

We checked in at the expansive Hilton Ras Al Khamiah to check out their recently renovated villa rooms.

Here’s our verdict on what we think are the three most important categories for anyone looking to go on holiday…

Rooms: 4/5

Across the resort, Hilton Ras Al Khaimah boasts more than 450 guest rooms, from the standard guest rooms in the main hotel block, to the 150 recently refurbished villa rooms. The newly redone villa rooms have kept the beachy feel of the rest of the resort, but are updated with some modern touches, including LED TVs, a connectivity panel for controlling the lights and music throughout the rooms and contemporary desks.

Rooms are spacious and thoughtfully laid out. Villa suites are separated into a smaller lounge and study area, with a large master bedroom the star of the show. An evening turn down service comes complete with fresh dates, and if you want to give your legs a rest, just call ahead for a buggy to pick you up and take you down to the main resort.

We love that the ground floor villa rooms come with a private garden area and direct access to the beach, while the pull of the first floor rooms includes a balcony overlooking the white sands, complete with cushy chairs and a daybed that’s perfect for watching the sun go down.

Restaurants: 4/5

With no less than 11 restaurants and bars to choose from, there’s plenty of international cuisines to sample across the resort. Make sure to experience sundowners at Sol – the whitewashed Mediterranean-inspired lounge and bar is at the far end of the resort and sits right on the edge of the beach. Cocktails are inventive (a chilli twist on a Margarita is our personal favourite), service is knowledgeable, and the views out to sea make you feel like you’re in a luxury resort on a private island.

On our trip, we check out the Churrasca night at Brazilian restaurant Pura Vida. It’s a great setting – right by the pool – and while the outdoor area is great, we’re underwhelmed by the interior which is a little tired. The meat selection makes up for this though, and we make our way through an endless stream of cuts of beef, lamb and chicken paired with a self-service buffet of salads and vegetable sides. The dessert buffet is a little hit and miss, and overall isn’t worth saving room for.

The breakfast selection is one of the most varied we’ve ever seen. As well as the typical continental buffet of pastries, cereal, fruit, cold meats and yoghurts, there’s an extensive hot buffet that creates a mean full English, two omelette stations as well as an Indian, Arabic and sushi selection that sees us going back for seconds, thirds and fourths. The focus on a fruit of the month is a nice touch, from flavoured muffins to home-made jams, this is a resort that takes their breakfasts seriously.

Pool & Beach: 5/5

The expansive pool options at this hotel are designed to please even the pickiest holidaymakers. Looking for somewhere to take the kids? There’s a dedicated family friendly pool area complete with waterslide. Fancy a drink? Then there’s a swim up bar at the far end of the main pool, which extends across a leafy landscaped garden looking out to the beach – it’s one of the biggest lagoon pools we’ve ever seen. Looking for something more private? Then head to the end of the villa rooms, where adjacent to beach bar, Sol, there’s a pool separate from the main resort pool.

But this isn’t just about the pool. The resort is set against 1.5km of private beach, which sweeps round from the main resort right over to the golf course. It’s littered with sunbeds both reserved for villa residents and those looking to soak up the sun on the pristine white sands.

If it’s something more energetic you’re after, the resort also runs an extensive water sports programme. Rent a kayak, jet ski or go fishing all for a reasonable surcharge.

Rooms start from Dhs449, villa rooms start from Dhs749.

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