A lavish coastal retreat in the capital


After a strenuous week, we look forward to a weekend by the pool, unwinding with refreshments and delish nosh. This weekend, escape to Saadiyat Rotana Resort and Villas for a serene getaway nestled at the heart of Saadiyat island. Surrounded by the most striking beach and waterfront, it makes for a perfect escape for those who in need of a bit of rest and relaxation. The island is also home to some of the city’s most renowned cultural, artistic and historical sites including Manarat Al Saadiyat, Louvre Abu Dhabi and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, so there’s still a spot of sightseeing for those interested.

The recently crowned “Abu Dhabi’s Leading Hotel 2017” by World Travel Awards, features 327 rooms and suites, and 13 beach-front villas, all of which include private butler service for guests. We stayed at the lavish one-bedroom beach villa, where privacy was guaranteed by a fence that surrounded it. Days were spent tanning by the private plunge pool on the fully-furnished terrace, and by the beach – each villa offers direct access to the shore. The features we loved the most were hands-down the stunning sea views from the floor to ceiling windows, the plush king-sized bed, contemporary fuss-free furnishings, and neutral hues that were prevalent throughout the resort and villas.

Culinary Offerings

Gastronomic offerings are aplenty at this resort, with everything from a buffet to fine dining options. The breakfast buffet at the Sama Lobby Lounge comprises traditional dishes such as the mouthwatering shakshouka, egg specialties, perfectly-done butter and zaatar croissants, and fresh honeycomb to sweeten your muesli, yoghurt and fresh fruit. At lunch or dinner, tuck into nonna-style Italian dishes at Si Restaurante Italiano and Bar. Starters comprise a bowl of thick, creamy porcini and wild mushroom soup and frito misto (crispy fried seafood platter with shrimp, calamari, seabass and cod), while mains feature the Filetto di Manzo (grilled beef fillet, fragrant and potatoes with veal jus and roasted cherry tomatoes). You can’t go wrong with tiramisu and coffee at an Italian eatery.


Get Active

A 24-hour gym, two pools, and a children’s area that features a lazy river, splash area and water slides will keep all family members occupied. For a bit of rejuvenation, hotfoot to the spa for an incredible Thai massage. Need to be a bit more active? Enjoy a round at the resorts’ mini-golf course or a quick tennis match at one of the two tennis courts.

Need to know: Visit https://www.rotana.com/rotanahotelandresorts/unitedarabemirates/abudhabi/saadiyatrotanaresortandvillas to book your villa.