Monday 18 May 2015 – Dubai United Arab Emirates
Pauline and I arrived at the BEAUTIFUL Park Hyatt feeling reasonably refreshed! It was 30 degrees at 7am, so we were both looking forward to getting into our air conditioned rooms. Oh my goodness, I didn’t expect this beautiful room, it’s a massive suite with a lounge with fresh fruit, a coffee machine and macaroons, a huge stand alone bath with candles and other bath time goodies, an amazing rainforest shower, gorgeous big bed and a lovely view over the water and out to the Burj Khalifa (the tallest building in the world).
Pauline and I were on our own today, as the Aussies arrive tomorrow, so after a couple of chilling hours in our rooms we went off to see the gold souks in Bur Dubai. We jumped in a taxi, which was about 23 Dirhams and were dropped off right outside. I was impressed with just how much gold there was everywhere (though I found it is a bit overwhelming and that you start to not really take it in..particularly as it is that really yellow gold, which I guess is not really our style in New Zealand), but in my mind I had imagined old style souks, rather than individual shops..
too much Aladdin maybe! So we wandered around the area a bit, which sort of reminded me a little of areas of Thailand. We stopped in a little shop and I bought some oil perfume scented like J’adore, in cute little Arabic bottles, and we also stopped in a spice shop where there were impressive displays of spices, dried fruits and sweets – I bought some camel chocolate (which is pretty nice, but looks like weird coloured stones).
We went back to the hotel around 11am and decided to just enjoy chilling out for the day, so I had room service (which was ridiculously fancy) for lunch, and then headed down to the gorgeous pool to read for a few hours.
At around 5 we had drinks with our hosts, who were letting us know they could no longer join us for dinner tonight and gave us some tips on where to go, so we jumped in a taxi to the Palace Hotel and walked through Souk Alhaba to get to the terraces where there are lots of restaurants with seats on the balcony, but these were all long reserved, so we stood on the terrace and watched the spectacular fountain show, which is on every evening until 10pm, and rotates songs each time. After that it was dinner at a lovely wee Lebanese restaurant, where to have water you buy it by the massive bottle. By this stage jet lag had gotten the better of us, so it was off to bed for a long sleep before heading out to Al Maha the next day…. Exciting!