Arrival/Check-In: The Oberoi Dubai, which opened in June 2013, is the storied Indian hotelier’s first and only property in the United Arab Emirates. The hotel is determined to make a dazzling first impression. To that end, Oberoi transferred 100 of its best, most remarkable Indian employees to Dubai in preparation for its grand opening. I arrived after 1 a.m. after a long connecting flight from New York and was greeted by a smiling team in the lobby (they were expecting me), along with my personal “floor butler” who escorted me to my room. She cheerfully advised that she was available 24/7 for whatever I might need — a unique perk available to all guests. A plate of scrumptious homemade chocolates in the room offered the perfect (very) late-night snack.
Guest Quarters: The hotel’s 252 spacious guestrooms and suites have floor-to-ceiling windows that offer spectacular views of the city’s skyline, rapidly transforming as Dubai continues to grow at a breakneck pace. The city’s development speaks both to its ongoing emergence as a key player in the global economy and its preparations to host World Expo 2020 — the first time the event will be held in the Middle East in its history. Many guestrooms and suites overlook the Burj Khalifa, an awe-inspiring emblem of the city that, at 163 stories, is the tallest skyscraper in the world.
I stayed in a sunny, generously proportioned deluxe room that overlooked the hotel’s oasis-like infinity pool. The décor was decidedly and elegantly modern, accented with bold bursts of color, hand-tufted rugs and specially commissioned artworks. My king-sized bed was a welcome ally in my battle against jet lag, induced by a nine-hour time difference, and the room was absolutely quiet, day and night. The separate seating area offered the ideal place to enjoy impeccable room service, and the huge bathroom with its double vanities, freestanding tub and spacious shower felt like a luxurious in-room spa.
Services/Amenities: The hotel has three restaurants. Nine7One, located on the lower level, is open 24 hours and deftly serves a range of global cuisines — from Lebanese to Japanese to French — in a tranquil, welcoming setting. The daily breakfast buffet presented a veritable smorgasbord of tasty delights, brimming with Western, Middle Eastern and Indian specialties and some of the best croissants and baguettes outside of Paris. The hotel’s contemporary Pan Asian restaurant, Umai, serves a wide range of Chinese, Thai, Indonesian and Japanese cuisine; at dinner, a “Kung Fu tea master” wielded a sleek teapot outfitted with a two-foot-plus, tapered spout with incredible dexterity, much to my table’s amusement and delight. Ananta, the Indian specialty restaurant, boasts a show kitchen with traditional tandoors and specializes in North Indian signature dishes, as well as a daily selection of Indian coastal specialties.
The Lobby Bar was a soothing, candlelit venue ideal for unwinding after an exhilarating afternoon exploring the desert that surrounds the city; the specialty cocktails are made to order with fresh fruit, and an extensive cigar selection is available.
Located on the hotel’s third floor, The Oberoi Spa, comprising seven therapy rooms, is the first and only 24-hour spa in Dubai. The atmosphere, complete with complimentary juices and wafting incense, is appropriately Zen-like, and the signature Oberoi Massage I enjoyed there was literally the best I’ve ever had.
The Experience: Truly exceptional service, to me, is manifested in deeply personal gestures. When I was coughing in the lobby one day, an employee of the hotel who happened to be walking by stopped and asked if I was ill; I apologized and said I’d picked up a stubborn cold weeks before. Later that morning, I returned from the spa to find no fewer than five people bustling around in my room; the lovely woman in charge told me they were giving my already spotless sanctuary an extra cleaning to ensure there wasn’t a molecule of dust that might exacerbate my cough. Fifteen minutes later, she knocked on my door with a steaming pot of tea, explaining it was a special blend that her mother made for her whenever she was sick. The next evening, the housekeeper left two packs of cough drops on the coffee table during turn-down service, with a handwritten note telling me to feel better. Every single employee I encountered during my stay effortlessly exuded this level of kindness and genuine eagerness to please. Judging by this stunning new outpost, it’s no wonder Oberoi Hotels & Resorts has long been, and squarely remains, in a class by itself.
- Less than 10 minutes for check-in
- Separate tub and shower
- Double vanities
- High-quality towels
- Powerful, unattached hair dryer
- High-quality bed linens
- Large, flat-screen television
- Large desk with convenient outlets
- Complimentary laptop safe
- Complimentary in-room WiFi
- Complimentary bottled water
- Stocked minibar
- Ample lighting
- In-room coffeemaker
- Iron and ironing board
- On-site restaurant and bar
- 24-hour room service
- 24-hour state-of-the-art fitness center
- Turn-down service
The Oberoi, Dubai
The Oberoi Centre
Business Bay (Burj Area)
United Arab Emirates
tel 971 4 4441444
Airplane travel evokes a lot of emotions these days: excitement, anticipation, uncertainty and nervousness, just to name a few. But when you do take to the skies again, the giddiness of getting pampered at 35,000 feet can most certainly wash away the surrealness of the past year and a half — at least for the duration of a long- haul flight — as you sip Champagne and slip your feet into plush slippers. While some global airlines have paused or pushed back plans for upgrades and refreshes to their premium cabins, others have introduced exciting changes that await in your pod or lie-flat bed in first and business classes. What’s more, amenities like privacy screens, sliding suite doors and space to spread out all serve a dual purpose as methods to luxuriate in the air while keeping social distance. Here are some nice- ties to expect now and in the near future, from retrofitted seat configurations to updated décor to Michelin-starred meals:
History and culture are etched into every corner of Greece. Beginning with its language, the oldest written language still in existence, and moving from the traces of passing civilizations and religions to pre-historic findings and works from many movements, there’s a wealth of culture to discover on your next trip to Greece.
United Airlines is making international travel more accessible. United announced the largest trans-Atlantic expansion in its history, including 10 new flights and five new destinations including Amman (AMM), Jordan; Bergen (BGO), Norway; Azores (PDL), Portugal; Palma de Mallorca (PMI), Spain; and Tenerife (TFS) in the Spanish Canary Islands. All new routes, set to begin in spring 2022, are not served by any other North American carrier.
Galataport Istanbul, a new cruise and lifestyle destination on the Bosphorus in Istanbul, welcomed its first ship, SeaDream II, on Oct. 1. Approximately 150 passengers and crew from Bulgaria Varna arrived at 10 a.m. for a two-day homeport operation before continuing to Bulgaria Burgaz.
Without a doubt, the pandemic changed the role of airports in the travel industry. Hamad International Airport’s role evolved in many ways since the pandemic hit. Now, more than ever, airports are responsible for creating a secure passenger experience. As the gateway to Qatar and the world, the safety and wellbeing of staff and passengers has always been at the core of Hamad International Airport’s strategy.
The countdown to Halloween weekend is on! Are you are still unsure about plans? Do you go to a house party? Stay in to hand out candy? Try something different this year and join Philadelphia’s The Mütter Museum at its 6th annual Mischief at The Mütter.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Walker Hotel Tribeca is blushing pink with an exclusive offer benefitting the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Throughout the month, guests can book an all-pink guestroom, among additional amenities.
This holiday season, escape to the Caribbean with Celebrity Cruises and reconnect with family and friends in luxurious accommodations that make you feel right at home. Savor globally inspired cuisine designed by our Michelin-starred chef, paired with the most awarded wine collection at sea. Elevate “me time” with a soothing spa treatment sure to renew. With both long and short cruises to celebrate in December, and even three special Ultimate Holiday Cruises that sail over Christmas and into the New Year, the time to gift an experience and create unforgettable memories is now. Celebrity Cruises’ Always IncludedSM pricing — drinks, WiFi and tips — ensures a seamless, carefree vacation with the ones you love.
Insight Vacations, Tourism Ireland and Tourism Northern Ireland are offering the chance to win a free trip to Ireland for two, valued at $6,000. Oct. 18–22, The Road to Ireland contest page will be updated daily with a new clue and question that contestants will need to answer for a chance to win a trip for two on Insight’s Country Roads of Ireland tour in 2022. Contestants have until 11:59 p.m. PST Oct. 29 to submit answers.