If you need to impress, try booking one of these romantic Dubai spots…
With its endless Instagram opportunities at every turn, it’s not hard to see why many residents and tourists come to Dubai looking for a romantic spot for dinner with their loved one.
So we’ve rounded up some of the best, whether you’re after a blissful beachfront setting, fabulous fountain views, or the perfect Italian restaurant to have your Lady and the Tramp moment.
Here are 17 of our favourite romantic restaurants in Dubai.
Spectacular views, high quality seafood and the opportunity to arrive by boat make 101 a wow-worthy restaurant that ticks all the boxes. It’s found in the private marina off the jetty of the One&Only The Palm, and boasts tables over the water as well as a seaside lounge and indoor seating with floor-to-ceiling windows looking out across the Gulf. Expect plenty of seafood, including a raw bar, seasonally changing catch of the day and plenty of fish dishes. For the best start, kick off with cocktails at Jetty Lounge at One&Only Royal Mirage, and take the complimentary boat over to dinner.
101 Dining Lounge & Bar, One&Only The Palm, Palm Jumeirah, daily 12pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 440 1030. oneandonlyresorts.com
Book an al fresco table at sunset in this stunning Portuguese restaurant and you’ll instantly feel worlds away from the metropolis we’re used to. There’s uninterrupted sea views and a sleek infinity pool which perfectly reflect the dusky sky in a truly breathtaking combination. The menu, helmed by José Avillez, offers small and large plates of authentic dishes, so you can choose whether you’d like to share a few on the table or keep yours all for yourself.
Tasca, Mandarin Oriental Jumeira, Jumeriah, daily 11am to 11pm. Tel: (04) 777 2222. mandarinoriental.com
Perched atop Raffles hotel is Tomo, a hidden gem and one of Dubai’s most underrated restaurants. It’s a little further out than some of the more mainstream options, but for the Downtown skyline views and epic sunsets, it’s so worth it. Although the tables outside are more for drinks and bar bites, it’s worth kicking off your evening there before heading inside to one of the more intimate tables for dinner.
Tomo, Raffles Dubai, Dubai, daily 12.30pm to 3.30pm and 6.30pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 3577888. raffles.com
Seafood fans will undoubtedly be fans of this Burj Al Arab restaurant, and for more than just its address. The menu is classed as Modern European, with plenty of seafood on offer, plus it’s got an underwater feel thanks to a floor to ceiling aquarium. You’ll pay for the premium – with a five-course tasting menu priced at Dhs995 per person, but for a special occasion, it’s worth it.
Al Mahara, Burj Al Arab, daily 12.30pm to 3.30pm, 7pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 301 7600. jumeirah.com
The combination of great views, incredible food, friendly service and upbeat atmosphere is what makes Alici one of our favourite date night spots. The first floor terrace is the place to be for a truly Mediterranean feeling, with white washed walls, wicker furniture and views out to the sea and JBR. Inspired by the Almafi Coast, if you didn’t manage to make it to Italy this summer, Alici is definitely the next best thing.
Alici, Bluewaters, Dubai, daily, 12pm to 3.30pm and 7pm to midnight. Tel: (04) 275 2577. alici.com
Want to see the city from 122 stories in the sky? You’ll want to make a reservation at At.mosphere, the world’s tallest restaurant. But it’s not just the views that are wow-worthy at this sky-high dining experience – its modern European menu is served up for breakfast, lunch and dinner in the restaurant, with an elegant afternoon tea available in the lounge during the afternoon, and an upscale a la carte lounge menu and expert cocktail list available until late night.
At.mosphere, Burj Khalifa, Downtown Dubai, daily, 7am to midnight restaurant, 12pm to 2am lounge. Tel: (04) 888 3828. atmosphereburjkhalifa.com
If you’re looking for a place where its easy to have a conversation without shouting over other guests, you’ll want to check out lesser-known fine-dining restaurant Marea. It’s a huge hit in New York, thanks to its carefully-crafted Italian menu by chef Michael White. There’s a newly-launched Jazz night every Wednesday, which makes it a perfect mid-week date night spot for live music lovers.
Marea, Gate Village 7, DIFC, daily 12pm to 3pm and 7pm to midnight. Tel: (04) 583 6366. marea.ae
folly’s indoor space is lovely, but its the expansive outdoor terrace that really makes it memorable. It has great views of the Madinat waterways and Burj Al Arab plus the surrounding foliage makes you feel like you’re in a chic garden. The menu has been created by Dubai chefs Nick Alvin and Scott Price, so you know it’s going to be good. Head there for sundowners and stay for the excellent tasting menu to round-off the perfect date night evening.
folly by Nick & Scott, Souk Madinat, Jumeirah, Sat to Thurs 4pm to 11pm, Fri 1pm to 11pm. Tel: (04) 430 8535. folly.ae
What makes Il Borro so special isn’t its stunning views (although it does have a lovely terrace that looks out to the waters of Jumeirah Al Naseem), nor its contemporary interiors which still manage to feel intimate. What gives Il Borro the wow-factor is its dedication to serving authentic Italian fare, made with Italian sourced products. While its modern Dubai outpost may be world’s away from its Tuscan home, the team behind What’s On’s Restaurant of the Year 2017 and 2018 remain dedicated to creating a taste of Italy in Dubai, and do it to an unfalteringly high, and arguably Michelin-worthy standard.
Il Borro Tuscan Bistro, Jumeirah Al Naseem, Jumeirah St, Dubai, daily noon to 3.30pm and 7pm to 1am. Tel: (04) 275 2555. ilborrotuscanbistro.ae
During the daytime Bleu Blanc is a light and open French eatery but come nightfall there’s a very romantic atmosphere. Low lighting and a sultry soundtrack offers the ideal spot to dine with a loved one. Pick a table by the window for views out to the Creek which looks beautiful at night, reflecting the lights of Business Bay. On the menu you’ll find a mix of modern European dishes, with a focus on fresh fish and juicy meat dishes, all prepared in the wood fire oven at the side of the room.
Bleu Blanc by David Myers, Renaissance Downtown Hotel, Dubai, Business Bay, daily 12pm to 3pm and 5pm to midnight. Tel: (04) 512 5533. bleublanc-dubai.com
Social by Heinz Beck
For fancy Italian food, they don’t come much fancier than Social by Heinz Beck. Found in the stunning Waldorf Astoria, it’s got a simple design inside that’s cosy and intimate. Dishes are beautifully presented (be sure to save room for dessert – these are some of the most wow-worthy dishes we’ve ever seen), without coming with an extortionate price tag. It’s fine dining at it’s very finest.
Social by Heinz Beck, Waldorf Astoria Dubai, Palm Jumeirah, 7pm to 11pm, closed Sundays. Tel: (04) 818 2222. waldorfastoria3.hilton.com
If you’re after impressive views and a strong contender the best steak in the city, you need to check out Prime 68. Located way up on the, you guessed it, 68th floor of JW Marriott Marquis, Prime68 is the perfect spot to enjoy a steak meal, with panoramic views of Downtown Dubai. Try out their ‘Dry Aged Beef Mondays’ where can get a 1kg Australian Grass Fed Tomahawk, served with two dishes and a bottle of wine for two people for Dhs750.
Prime68, 68th floor, JW Marriott Marquis, Dubai, 6pm, to 12am, Sat to Thurs, 1pm to 4pm, 6pm to 12am, Friday. Tel: (04) 414 3000. jwmarriottmarquisdubailife.com
With its beachfront location, whitewashed fit-out and twinkly lights, it’s not hard to see why Fish has become one of the city’s most romantic spots. As well as tables in the garden, there is seating right on the beach, so you can enjoy the restaurant’s Turkish, Greek and Mediterranean fusion dishes with your toes in the sand.
Fish Beach Taverna, Le Meridien Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, daily 12pm to 11pm. Tel: (04) 511 7139. fish-dubai.com
Ossiano in Atlantis has an 11-million-litre tank of seawater that’s home to 65,000 marine animals – try and book a table right next to the aquarium for the most wow-worthy views. The service at this seafood restaurant is impeccable, and for an extra special treat (at the cost of Dhs1,850), you can arrange for one of the hotel’s skilled divers to deliver a personalised message to your loved one.
Ossiano, Atlantis The Palm, daily 6.30pm to 11pm, Saturday lunch 1pm to 3pm. Tel: (04) 426 2626. atlantisthepalm.com
Perched on stilts at the end of a wooden pier overlooking the sparkling waters of the Gulf, when it comes to date night, Pierchic is hard to beat. It’s one of Jumeirah’s most iconic spots, and as well as serving up some of the best seafood in town, it has some pretty spectacular views. Enjoy sundowners at the outdoor bar before heading indoors to watch the waves from an ocean view table for two.
Pierchic, Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai, daily 1pm to 3pm and 7pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 432 3232. jumeirah.com
The scene is set before you even reach your table at this Italian restaurant, which is approached via a candlelit stairway. Choose to dine al fresco in the cooler months, or in one of the many secluded corners inside Segreto for a truly intimate meal. The food is traditional Italian and designed to be shared, and for an even more authentic experience, take an abra along the Madinat waters before heading home. Who needs Venice?
Segreto, Souk Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai, daily 6.30pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 432 3232. jumeirah.com
Eauzone’s beachfront location makes it the perfect spot to enjoy dinner for two as the sun goes down. Located in one of Dubai’s most popular hotels for couples, this Asian fusion restaurant has a prime spot overlooking the water. It’s even more beautiful at night, with picture-perfect views of the Arabian Gulf illuminated by twinkly lights. Book a table in one of the restaurant’s floating ‘Majlis’ and enjoy your meal in your own little world.
Eauzone, The One and Only Royal Mirage, Dubai, daily noon to 3.30pm and 7pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 3999 999. royalmirage.oneandonlyresorts.com
At the waterfront of the Palace Downtown is Thiptara, a Thai restaurant and terrace surrounded by Burj Lake. Out on the terrace which laces round the restaurant, you’ll find what is arguably the city’s best view of the Dubai Fountain. Perch up against the balcony to tuck into a menu of home-made Thai dishes, which range from traditional Bangkok street food dishes such as satay and steamed dim sum, to Thiptara specials including Phad Char Soy Shell – a spicy scallop dish loaded with flavours in an oyster sauce. The whole menu is created by the Thai chef, and you’ll be able to make your way through the menu to the sounds of Dubai Fountain’s dramatic shows.
Thiptara, Palace Downtown, Downtown Dubai, daily 6pm to 11.30pm, Friday brunch 12.30pm to 4pm. Tel: (04) 888 3444. addresshotels.com
Images: Instagram/ Supplied