8 fun things to look forward to in Abu Dhabi this February
Comedy nights, new exhibitions, attractions and the restaurant openings to know about…
With the arrival of a new month comes a slew of new things to do in Abu Dhabi. From the long-awaited arrival of some famous funnymen, to new restaurants and pop-ups that deserve your attention, we’ve rounded up the best things happening in Abu Dhabi this February.
February 3 to 5: Laugh out loud with some improvised anarchy
Improvised anarchy is the name of the game with the UK comedy circuit’s favourite improv group The Noise Next Door. The lads are (finally) in the UAE to perform a series of completely unscripted shows. Prepare for ludicrous characters, witty one-liners and explosive physicality, where impromptu audience suggestions create the bones of a story. There’s a family show at Theatre by QE2 in Dubai where you can bring the kids (Dhs100 per child), but it’s 18+ for all other shows.
Various locations, February 3 to 5, from Dhs130 per adult. thelaughterfactory.com
Throughout February: The UAE 50 year celebrations continue with Portrait of a Nation II
The 50-year celebrations for the UAE continue with this exhibition bringing together a unique collection of artworks highlighting the innovation, creativity and collaboration that marks the development of the nation. Over 100 key artworks, including special commissions from founders of the UAE art scene to emerging artists, video interviews, archival images and more.
Manarat Al Saadiyat, Abu Dhabi, free. @manaratalsaadiyat
February 3 to 20: See some of the world’s biggest football stars
The FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2021™is officially back in the UAE capital this February, when fans will see the world’s top teams compete for the most prestigious honour in global club football in Abu Dhabi. All matches will take place in either the Mohamed bin Zayed Stadium or Al Nahyan Stadium, and participating teams include the champions of Concacaf (Monterrey), UEFA (Chelsea), CONMEBOL (SE Palmeiras), the AFC (Al Hilal SFC), and CAF (Al Ahly SC), Al Jazira from the UAE and OFC representative, AS Pirae.
Mohamed bin Zayed Stadium or Al Nahyan Stadium, Abu Dhabi, February 3 to 20, from Dhs20. ticketmaster.ae
Throughout February: Enjoy a taste of Jamaica
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Located at the blossoming beachfront hang out of Mamsha Al Saadiyat, Ting Irie Pon Di Beach is painting a vibrant coat of black, gold and green on the cultural district. At this capital incarnation of Jamaican vibe palace, Ting Irie Pon Di Beach you’ll find an alfresco terrace, stirring reggae music, dancehall bangers, authentic Caribbean cuisine and because it’s licensed, some authentic calypso ‘spirit’. The menu features a theatrical mix of fusion and straight up Trenchtown flavours, with a nice lickle range of options for vegetarians and vegans. We’ re all about those big plates of ackee and slat fish, curry goat, spitfiyah jerk chicken and seafood stew, but there are plenty of light bites available too.
Mamsha Al Saadiyat, now open. Tel: (02) 886 7786 @tingirieauh
Throughout February: Get locked up at Abu Dhabi’s newest attraction
If you’ve ever caught yourself screaming unsolicited advice to the stars of Fox’s Prison Break, if you ever fancied the idea of flexing your mind and muscle against a real-world version of The Crystal Maze, there’s a brand new Abu Dhabi attraction that is right up your cell block. Prison Island – Beat the Bars, has now sprung open its iron gates in Abu Dhabi mall and is issuing an open challenge to the UAE’s adventure and excitement seekers. Set over a 1,000m² expanse, this is no escape room — it’s a network of 26 individual ‘cells’, decorated with a warden’s eye level of detail and featuring tasks each more fiendishly tricky than the last, and you’ll have to beat them all if you want to escape the island, with winner’s bragging rights.
Abu Dhabi Mall, Al Zahiya, now open, Dhs125. @prisonisland.abudhabi.
Throughout February: Marvel at some iconic works of art
Louvre Abu Dhabi is home to a world class collection of important art and storied objects of dazzling fascination, but with their specially-curated, limited-time exhibitions you can really get lost in a world that time has otherwise forgotten. The museum’s first foray into international exhibitions for 2022 is Versailles and the World — a collaboration with Musée national des châteaux de Versailles et de Trianon, set to run until June 4, 2022. Admission to meander amongst the enchanting artefacts contained within the collection is included in the cost of your Louvre Abu Dhabi ticket (full price Dhs60). Comprised of more than 100 artworks, the exhibition is separated in three distinct chapters: A Palace Open to the World: Visitors of Versailles; The Orient Revealed and the Orient as a Reverie: Exoticism in Versailles; and Between Heaven and Earth: Discovering the World, the aspirational intent behind the exhibition is to show Versailles’ position as a centre for cultural exploration and intellectual development in the 18th and 17th centuries. The Palace amassed a rich collection of curiosities from the intrepid journeying of French expeditions into the lands of the Ottoman Empire, Africa, America and Asia.
Saadiyat Island, January 26 to June 4, 2022, Tue to Sun 10am to 6.30pm, Mon closed, Dhs60 (concessions available). louvreabudhabi.ae
Throughout February: Tuck into some of Dubai’s tastiest burgers
Qasr Al Hosn was once the seat of the nation’s government, a home to the Al Nahyan family and the site of a national archive. Now it’s a living monument, a celebration of culture, heritage and the rich and storied past of the UAE. And as of yesterday (Thursday, January 20), rather appropriately, it also became the temporary home of one of Dubai’s best-loved burger brands, High Joint. When it comes to burgers, we strongly advocate the rule of self-experimentation. Try them for yourself. But if we were to try and explain why this particular outfit is worthy of experimentation, our conclusion would be — High Joint absolutely nails every one of the core elements of the perfect burger.
Qasr Al Hosn, 4pm to 11pm daily, until May 5. @high.joint
Throughout February: Check-in for a capital staycation
For a desert staycation, guests can retreat to the spoils of Al Wathba, a Luxury Collection Desert Resort & Spa for a culinary weekend away with the ‘Epicurean Discovery’, offering a one-night stay in one of the desert-inspired guest rooms, it also comes with free WiFi and full board dining, offering visitors the chance to savour the extensive array of flavours. Authentic pizzas, fresh homemade pastas and creamy decadent tiramisu can be devoured out on the stunning outdoor terrace of Terra Secca, against the backdrop of enchanting sunsets, changing vistas and a paddock of elegant Arabian horses. Perched on the rooftop, Al Mesayan enraptures with its panoramic scenes and incredible selection of palate pleasing Levantine and French Moroccan specialties. Breakfast is then presented at the enchanting Bait Al Hanine restaurant, where the menu offers every kind of breakfast dish you can imagine, including traditional shakshuka, homemade granolas, fresh pastries, eggs prepared to order, fresh fruits and more.
Al Wathba south, doubles from Dhs2,000. Tel: (0)2 204 4444, marriott.com