Staycation spotlight: Six Senses Zighy Bay, Oman
Grab your passport and escape to the mountains…
While What’s On‘s staycation reviews are usually reserved for within the Emirates, an escape to Six Senses Zighy Bay is as easy as spending the weekend in Fujairah. Location-wise they’re neighbours, so you’ll just need to drive for two hours to an area technically classed as Sharjah, hop over the border to Oman and into the mountain you go. Ask the resort to prepare your visa ahead of your arrival and the process couldn’t be simpler.
The look and feel
Six Senses Zighy Bay is a remote resort found next to Musandam (where you can take dhow boat cruises to spot wild dolphins). With an archaic mountain on one side and picturesque ocean on the other, the hotel is nestled between a panoramic view of stunning scapes. Choose to – as we did – paraglide your way in and you’ll really have a chance to soak up the view on arrival. While a little nerve-wracking, the experience was a breeze (if you’ll pardon the pun) and a truly unforgettable start to the stay.
The resort only offers villas, each with their own pool and in close proximity to the beach. Made from mostly stone and concrete, the entire resort is reminiscent of The Flinstones but especially the villas, which are robust and spacious yet homely – like a time capsule from the prehistoric era with a luxury twist. The outdoor space feels secluded and cosy with large trees and plenty of chill-out areas, but we spent the majority of our stay soaking up the sun from the private infinity pool. The room is large and open plan, with a large sofa and living area, and a comfortable kingsize bed in the middle section. The bathroom features an enormous white stone tub and the option to shower indoors or out (under a steaming hot power shower that we never wanted to leave).
Facilities and activities
Upon arrival we’re given a sheet with the week’s upcoming workshops and activities, offering everything from cheese and wine-tasting, cooking classes and kayaking, to yoga, hand-line fishing and mountain hiking. Sustainability is a core focus for the resort, and filtered water is served everywhere from Six Senses’ glass bottles. On their tour of Earth Lab, guests can discover more about the ways in which the resort gives back to the planet such as the on-site organic garden, ocean and beach clean-ups, and its recycling processes. You’ll also find the only saltwater pool in the GCC, and the famed Six Senses Spa, which you can reach on your personal bicycle (or a buggy, when it gets too hot). The spa offers a range of relaxing and reinvigorating treatments, but we were most intrigued by the Wellness Screening, which is conducted by Dr. Peeyush and gives a full analysis of what’s going on inside. Hooked up to what looked like a lie-detector (it wasn’t), our hands, feet and head we’re scanned to create an overall wellness result before discussing the details and Dr. Peeyush makes his recommendations.
The food and drink
A total of six dining outlets are spread across the resort. We first set our sights on Sense on the Edge but it was unfortunately already fully-booked for dinner. We did however, manage to squeeze in for a drink and the experience was just as wondrous. Set on the mountain edge, the views are incredible and despite not facing the sunset, the dusky sky still took our breath away. Back at sea level, Summer House was a great option for dining; with an international menu, highlights included the fillet steak, sea bass, tuna tartare and burrata. The Arabic restaurant, Spice Market, also hit the mark, even if just for the hummus alone.
The room rates
In June 2022, room rates start at Dhs3,302 per night for the Pool Villa, which is what we stayed in, and includes a daily breakfast in Spice Market. The villa offers everything you could possibly need to disconnect for a couple of days and return to the city feeling completely refreshed after a night surrounded by natural landscapes.