All the Dubai restaurants we said goodbye to in 2019
We salute this year’s fallen restaurants, bars and nightclubs…
There’s a huge turnover in the Dubai bar and restaurant scene, and sometimes the places we love the most are casualties. These are the Dubai restaurants, bars and clubs that closed their doors in the past 12 months. Gone but not forgotten…
Lasting a little over a year, sleek steakhouse Beefbar faced the same fate as Al Fattan Currency House neighbours Crazy Fish, R Trader, Jekyll and Hyde and Sass Café when it closed its doors in April 2019. The people behind the brand did promise it would return, although a new location has yet to be announced.
Diddy. Steve Aoki. Idris Elba. These are just some of the names that headlined at Gotha during its short tenure in Dubai. But it would appear that huge performances from famous faces weren’t enough to keep the crowds coming. The super club opened in Business Bay in March 2018, but its doors abruptly closed just one year later in April 2019.
Part Peruvian, part Japanese, this Nikkei concept was never quite as busy as its neighbouring counterparts in Club Vista Mare. Although its Monday ladies’ night was popular, the restaurant owners took to social media in May 2019 to announce they were “saddened” to say the restaurant would be closing at the end of the month.
Tribeca was busy most nights of the week, and you’d struggle to get a table at its Wednesday ladies’ night, so we were surprised to learn it had closed its doors this summer. Fitted out like a New York-esque loft, they were big on healthy dishes.
House Party Bar
House Party Bar was the antithesis of most Dubai openings. While new bars typically favour sleek interiors, House Party Bar was kitsch and cringey. Laid out to resemble a frat house party, guests would drink out of plastic red cups, play games in the kitchen, or jump in a ball pit in the play room. It lasted nine months.
First it was Eden, the El Chiringuito, then Playa Nomade, but sadly it wasn’t third time lucky. The beach club at Rixos The Palm faced the same fate as its predecessors when it didn’t reopen after the summer.
A stalwart Dubai Marina venue, Girders was a pretty popular pub in the JA Ocean View Hotel. It was a go-to for catching live sport, and always provided a friendly, no-frills atmosphere. It’s already been replaced by a cool new sports bar called Offside.
Cirque Le Soir
After almost eight years, Cirque Le Soir nightclub closed in March 2019. The Fairmont Dubai nightclub was credited with pushing the boundaries of Dubai’s nightlife scene, thanks to its outrageous performers and novelty nights.
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Galvin Bistrot & Bar
Galvin brothers Jeff and Chris – famous for their Harrods cafe in the UK – opened their first Dubai restaurant in 2017. Despite a rebrand attempt (from Galvin to Galvin Bistrot & Bar) the City Walk spot closed for good in March. Aya, by chef Izu Ani, has recently opened in its place.
Ruth’s Chris Steak House
The famed American steakhouse chain Ruth’s Chris was something of a Dubai stalwart, and you’d have to book in advance to get a table at its Wednesday ladies’ night. Sadly, it closed earlier this year.
Sean Connolly at Dubai Opera
British-born celebrity chef Sean Connolly said he was saddened to party ways with his restaurant at Dubai Opera in January 2019, 16 months after it opened. The brasserie-style restaurant was popular with pre- and post-theatre goers, but failed to draw in diners outside of show times. It’s since be rebranded as The Loft at Opera.