7 epic things to do in Abu Dhabi this weekend: June 17 to 19
Make it one to remember…
We’re holding our third What’s On Abu Dhabi Lock In this weekend, possibly the best value staycation in the capital. If you were lucky enough to get a room before they all sold out, we’ll see you there. If you didn’t, there’s still an epic itinerary waiting for you below.
Thursday, June 17
New at the movies this week
Pixar’s latest animated tale follows Luca and Alberto, two sea monsters that disguise themselves as humans in order to explore and carb-load in the Italian Riviera town of Portorosso. They befriend a local girl, Giulia who helps them live out their best bipedal lives whilst trying to conceal their fishy little secret. Because it’s Pixar, you can borderline bank on this being a wholesome, fine-artfully told caper with a heartwarming score and *gestures wildly in Italian* magnificently pitched sense of humour. You’ll also find the follow up to Ryan Reynolds and Samuel Jackson’s comedy action movie, The Hitman’s Bodyguard hitting the screens. The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard plunges the unlikely strike force back into an endless tirade of henchman, this time on the hunt for assassin Darius’ (Jackson) wife (played by Salma Hayek). The star-studded cast list also includes Antonio Banderas and Morgan Freeman.
Tickets: Book now
Grains of truth
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Beachfront Saadiyat haunt, Coffee Architecture is one of our favourite spots for a weekend brew. Nooran Al Bannay has created a collection of coffee houses that celebrate the art and ritual of great coffee. Equipped with upper tier pour varieties and preparations, you’ll also find dainty pastries, cookies, brownies and brioche to complement your caffeinated quaffing.
Mamsha Al Saadiyat. Tel: (055) 446 3433, @coffee_architecture
Eastern treats, and street food eats
As the week draws to a close, Urban Kitchen should be on your radar. On Thursdays, their ‘best of Pan-Asia’ night is a veritable all-star multinational line-up of Eastern cuisine. It’s a bargain too, taking place between 7pm and 10.30pm — the soft beverage package is just Dhs180.
Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi, Thu 7pm to 10.30pm, from Dhs180. dusit.com
Friday, June 18
The grand carnivorous carnival
One of the capital’s most frequently sold out, consistently talked about, brunches with culinary clout — is getting a new Saturday edition. The hugely popular VaKaVa Friday brunch will stay, but throughout June and July, you’ll also be able to book in for a sophisticated Saturday session. The Barbacoa Brunch starts at Dhs325 for the soft package and takes its name from the time-refined Latin cooking method that delivers the meat-world’s juiciest joints. Mains are served in the traditional South American rodizio style, where items are brought to the table in a seductive meat parade.
Conrad Abu Dhabi Etihad Towers, W Corncihe Road, every Sat 1pm to 5pm (June and July), soft Dhs325, house Dhs450. Tel: (02) 811 5666 or email EtihadTowers.FBreservations@conradhotels.com.
Your invite to Fight Island
UFC Gym’s Abu Dhabi location, is currently offering a buy six months, get six mnths free offer. The team of experts provide fitness regimens tailored to each member’s unique physiques, and lifestyle and experiences targets, as well as providing holistic education on all aspects of the health and fitness programme. Facilities in the 1,600 square metre gym include strength equipment; cardio area; battle ropes; agility ladders; and expansive mat areas for (adult and youth) martial arts training. There’s even the option to try before you buy with a free day pass, to get yours, just jump on the ufcgym.me website and fill in the form.
Retired Military Personnel Association complex, Mohamed Bin Zayed City, Abu Dhabi, open 6am to 10pm daily. Tel: (800) 832 496, ufcgym.me
Derby day at the Euros
You may have noticed that there’s some important football on at the moment, and the climax of this Friday’s action is a clash between those oldest of foes. England and Scotland will put aside referendum discussion aside and talk in the language of sweet tekkers and crunching tackles. Kicking off at 11pm Cooper’s is a firm favourite for fans to catch big match action. It’s a handsome hang spot with large screens — making the referee a big enough target to hurl whatever life advice you might deem appropriate at. There’s also a Sun to Thu happy hour (4pm to 8pm) and a special Sport’s Hub for the summer, with the opportunity to win prizes and make savings on a menu of pub grub classics.
Park Rotana, Park Rotana Complex Road, near Khalifa Park, open midday to 2am. Tel: (02) 657 3317, @parkrotana
Saturday, June 19
The best of both worlds
We went to try the new Duo brunch at the InterContinental and were instantly smitten. It’s held across two of their flagship dining venues — the popular Pan-Asian restaurant Cho Gao, and the world class churrascaria, Chamas. Fill up on flame-cooked meats, dainty dim sum, seafood salads and some other exciting curveballs (shout out to the chicken and rice stand chilli sauce).
InterContinental Abu Dhabi, Al Bateen, Saturdays 12.30pm to 4pm, soft Dhs249, house Dhs 349. Tel: (056) 680 2161, abudhabi.intercontinental.com