Staycation review: JA Palm Tree Court
Get a taste of the tropics without the price tag of a flight…
With many locations dotted around the UAE, Maldives and Seychelles, JA Hotels and Resorts is known for its welcoming and friendly aura. Its Jebel Ali location has recently seen some changes, with the highly anticipated new villas and elevated amenities of Palm Tree Court. Its expansive grounds feature three different hotel venues, dining options, and a variety of activities ranging from water sports, horse riding, golf and a kid’s water park, cementing this location as an ultimate staycation destination.
Here’s our verdict…
Perched on the Jebel Ali shores, JA Palm Tree Court acts as a luscious sanctuary away from the hustle and bustle of the city, without requiring hours of driving. Ranging from a 30- to 50-minute drive from most parts of Dubai, this expansive oasis is located just off the highway on your way to Abu Dhabi, parallel to the Jebel Ali Port. As we enter the grounds, meandering through the charming cobble roads, a world of luscious and tropical greenery swiftly engulfs us, transporting us to an episode of White Lotus.
Look and feel
Perched on a small hill, the reception sits central to the resort, with all the beach-facing rooms and pool facilities spilling from either side along the beach shore. With a vast beach, guests can bask in the sunshine on loungers scattered across the shoreline as well as multiple different pools, which are surrounded by green lawns and swaying palm trees. With a canopy of tropical foliage blooming around the resort, and pops of colour from desert roses and the fresh floral scents of plumerias, the resort truly transports you to a tropical island. Calm and tranquillity wash over us as we listen to the trickling of water features and soft bird calls, whilst becoming acquainted with vibrant and mysterious peacocks strutting across the grounds.
JA Palm Tree Court recently revamped their beachfront villas, which overlook the expansive gardens, a new glistening pool and the Arabian Gulf. Light, roomy and modern, the rooms are minimalist with blue-hued artwork and pillows that add a serene touch. The rooms act as a perfect place to unwind, with a small seating area complete with a sofa, chair and coffee table. The balcony has a parasol and matching table, allowing guests to perch outside for a sundowner, or enjoy a quiet moment to read a book.
The hotel’s commitment to sustainability is a heartwarming and a welcomed touch, with reusable glass bottles of water refilled throughout our stay. Toiletries are made from and packaged in recycled or biodegradable materials, avoiding single-use plastics. Leaflets in the bathrooms explain how guests can indicate that they want to reuse their towels, and recycling bins are provided in the rooms.
From the expansive shoreline to the multiple pools on offer, guests will not run out of things to do here. The grounds are home to a golf course, equestrian centre, kid’s water park, shooting range, marina and water sports centre to name a few.
During our staycation, we opted for two water activities, with a morning of paddle boarding, where we floated across the serene water and took in the gorgeous views of the resort and Arabian Gulf. The second activity was a truly exceptional experience, where we swam with one of the JA’s friendly horses in the marina. Our trusted guide took us out for an hour, where we swam and walked alongside the adorable Woobie in the sea, learning about her love for the water and the strong bond she shares with our guide.
Food and drink
With an array of gorgeous dining options, guests will be able to find anything that fits their mood; from wholesome comfort foods and quick bites by the pool to sophisticated Asian delicacies or immersive dining. We ventured to Tamr Terrace for breakfast, which is new to JA’s culinary scene. The boho chic spot invites guests for a causal alfresco dining under a rattan terrace, with a food truck-style kitchen, that delivers both breakfast and lunch to your tables. Fresh pastries, eggs on toast, salads and sandwiches are on offer, alongside freshly squeezed juices and a never-ending stream of coffee.
In between dips in the pool, we strolled over to Anchor Bar for a lazy lunch, and decided to join their Saturday picnic brunch. A vast stream of vibrant salads, live barbecue stations, endless cheese and crackers and desserts were on display. With our toes in the sand and sarongs around our hips, we dove into an idyllic lunch under the shade of our parasol. Other than Anchor Bar, the resort is home to multiple pool bars that offer casual alfresco dining, for when you want to refuel whilst staying wrapped in your towel or munching from the comfort of your sun lounger.
During our stay, we dined at two different restaurants for dinner. On the first night, we stepped onto a charming boat and embarked on an immersive dining adventure known as Sirene, showcasing the best ingredients the ocean has to offer. We decided to stay on land for our second night, indulging in an authentic taste of southeast Asia at the White Orchid, a cosy yet sophisticated wooden restaurant with glowing lighting and live music. There are many other venues on offer for dinner, depending on your cravings and culinary mood.
One of the best parts of this hotel is its all-inclusive rates, which allows guests to fully indulge in their holiday, with selected food and drinks included, as well as house pouring from 11am to 11pm. During the high season (November to May) all inclusive rates start at Dhs1,995, with the low season (Jun to Sep) rates starting at Dhs1,495. Guests can also opt for just bed and breakfast rates, or half board rates as well.
A wonderful escape from the city that is very well-catered to families, groups of friends or couples. With multiple pools, a vast beach, a marina and so many facilities on offer, guests can be as busy and active as they want or choose to simply bask in the sunshine all day next to the pool. JA Palm Tree Court is excellent value for money, with all-inclusive, half-board, or just bed and breakfast deals to suit all budgets. An idyllic spot for a weekend staycation with loved ones.
JA Palm Tree Court, JA The Resort, Exit 13, Sheikh Zayed Road, Mina Jebel Ali, Dubai, Tel: (0)4 814 5555, jaresortshotels.com