Staycations are all the craze for those with little free time, and are not only easy to plan and book, but are also easy to pack for. Whether you stay in Dubai or just stay close to home, our region is overflowing with sensational resorts and luxury hotels competing for your approval. In this feature, Savoir Flair selects the best staycation spots in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and each one is designed to transport you away from everyday life. On our list you’ll find amazing desert resorts set in the middle of wildlife sanctuaries, island destinations with plenty of adventure activities, five-star hotels where luxury and service are the premier attraction, and so much more.
Click through our gallery to discover our roundup of Savoir Flair-approved staycation spots, and some of the region’s best hidden getaways.
Al Maha Resort
Connect to your Middle Eastern roots by booking a stay at the beautiful Al Maha Resort, which is located directly inside the Dubai Desert Conservation reserve. Al Maha is a lush oasis that honors the Bedouin heritage and culture; a place where vacationers can watch native gazelle and Arabian Oryx frolick from the safety of a luxurious infinity pool or enjoy delicious indigenous cuisine at the on-site restaurant Al Diwaan.
SF Tip: The Arabian Oryx and gazelles are the star attractions of Al Maha Resort. The Arabian wildlife can be viewed from the temperature-controlled infinity pool and sun deck seating area of each private villa.
Double rooms from AED 4,300/SAR 4,400
Tel: (+971) 4 832 9900
Anantara Sir Bani Yas Island
Take a trip down the road to Abu Dhabi, and there you’ll find one of its most luxurious resort locations at Anantara Sir Bani Yas Island. This exquisite resort overlooks the Arabian Gulf and offers plenty of exotic vacation activities like kayaking and hiking, as well as relaxing options like spa treatments and fine dining.
SF Tip: The property is located in the heart of the Wildlife Arabian Park, where you can spot free-roaming animals that were once endangered. All of the villas have their own plunge pool.
Double rooms from AED 808/SAR 825
Tel: (+971) 2 656 1399
Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa
Anantara Dubai The Palm is truly a unique resort, a place where urbanity mixes with Asian designs and Mediterranean accents for a one-of-a-kind getaway experience. With the only over-water villas in the Middle East, 10,000 square meters of swimming lagoons, and fine dining venues, Anantara is a great option for a weekend escape.
SF Tip: The resort features a long tail boat, which has been shipped directly from Thailand, to transport guests on a scenic trip between Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa and the Dubai Marina.
Double rooms from AED 935/SAR 954
Tel: (+971) 4 567 8888
Bab al Shams
One visit to Bab al Shams is all it takes to understand why the World Travel Awards named it the World’s Leading Desert Resort. Imbued with romantic desert ambience and offering tailor-made guest services, Bab al Shams is a nearby getaway that will truly transport you to another realm.
SF Tip: The 1,400 square meter temperature-controlled three-tiered infinity pool is one of the most enchanting features of the resort, offering up stunning views of the surrounding desert.
Double rooms from AED 750/SAR 756
Tel: (+971) 4 809 6100
Banyan Tree Al Wadi
For a romantic weekend with your significant other, you’d be hard pressed to find a better place than Banyan Tree Al Wadi, a unique all-pool villa concept resort located in a cool nomadic setting. Inside the wildlife sanctuary at Wadi Khadeja, visitors will enjoy glimpses of native wildlife, a round of golf, as well as specialized Asian-inspired hydrotherapy facilities.
SF Tip: Banyan Tree Al Wadi boasts an 18-hole championship golf course and access to Banyan Tree’s private Ras Al Khaimah Beach.
Double rooms from AED 1,619/SAR 1,653
Tel: (+971) 7 206 7777
One&Only The Palm
In a city that is all about superlatives, One&Only The Palm is practically in a league of its own, with breathtaking architecture, an infinity pool overlooking the Arabian Gulf, lush landscaping, immaculate customer service, five-star dining, gorgeous rooms, and luxurious amenities awaiting your arrival.
SF Tip: The One&Only The Palm has its own marina, which will make your stay there feel like an exclusive island getaway. Hop on the resort’s water taxi for transportation to and from the One&Only Royal Mirage property in the Dubai Marina. It cruises every day from 12pm to 11:30pm.
Double rooms from AED 2,635/SAR 2,690
Tel: (+971) 4 440 1010
Qasr al Sarab
Amid the rolling dunes of Rub’Al Khali, the world’s largest uninterrupted sand desert, lies Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort. This vacation hotspot is a great place to experience unique adventures like falconry, desert sailing, and archery, as well as pampering treatments at Anantara Spa and fine dining at any one of its four restaurants.
SF Tip: Get an insight into traditional Emirati cuisine and take a cooking lesson with Qasr al Sarab’s expert chef. You will also have the opportunity to learn how to prepare traditional Turkish coffee and Moroccan mint tea.
Double rooms from AED 1,020/SAR 1,040
Tel: (+971) 2 886 2088
The Four Seasons
The Four Seasons is one of the most respected names in the hospitality industry, and its location in Dubai meets its global reputation and the city’s demand for the grandiose. Located on Jumeirah Beach, The Four Seasons is an elegant hotel that fuses modern design with Arabian heritage, and boasts 11 restaurants and lounges, an opulent spa, and three gorgeous swimming pools.
Double rooms from AED 2,690/SAR 2,746
Tel: (+971) 4 270 7777