Day Two – A private desert oasis

Tuesday May 19 2015 – Dubai, United Arab Emirates

This morning I woke up at 7 feeling really well rested and ready to go –  I’m not sure whether this is to do with the heat, the sleep, not having to go to work, or a combination. I went down to the breakfast restaurant and met Pauline and our two hosts, and had a nice buffet brekkie with lots of delicious fresh fruit. After breakfast we were picked up by our drivers from Arabian Adventures, who are absolutely lovely (and who I know are always pleasant to deal with whether you are being hosted or are booking with them for someone else). We drove out of Dubai City and into the desert, which took less than an hour but it really feels like you’re in the middle of the desert, to Al Maha Luxury Desert Resort and Spa.

Al Maha is a conservation reserve, so there are Gazelles, Oryx and lots of birds freely roaming, and they are so gorgeous!! We checked in and had welcome mocktails while waiting, and then were each transported to our private suites by buggy (they are all so spread out for privacy, and it would be too hot to walk – you call reception when you want picked up)

My Little House

I felt like crying when I went into my room… It is SO beautiful! These photos don’t do it justice! It is filled with Arabian Antiques, and beautiful furniture! I can’t wait to dive into the massive bed tonight. The infinity pool is really lovely, and overlooks the desert, and I’ve had gazelles coming and drinking from it! I feel so spoilt, there’s no way I could afford to pay for a stay here on my own.

At lunch time we all met in the restaurant, and I met the Australian agents, who are all lovely. We discussed how scary the skydiving is going to be, how amazing New Zealand produce is, what Manu from MKR is like in real life, and of course the famous Beached As Bro video. The food is just as beautiful as everything else, with fine dining presentation.

For the rest of the afternoon there’s been free time, so I have been swimming in my pool and lying on my sun lounger reading. It is so hot that even where you’re not in the sun you have that feeling like your skin is burning… It’s lovely! 😀

We were told to meet in the lobby at 6pm for sunset drinks before dinner, and then several 4WDs turned up to take us for a surprise sunset drink in the dunes, and a camel ride – thank goodness I had worn tights under my dress, some of the girls hadn’t. There was an amazing little bar set up with champagne and strawberries and dates (which are every where in Dubai, and really delicious); little cushions to sit on to watch the sunset, and camels with covers over their mouths to stop any spitting. The camels were soooo gorgeous with their big long eyelashes; I gave one a good head rub and he seemed to enjoy it

Easel for sketching gazelles

Getting up on the camel wasn’t as scary as I imagined, it is a bit funny with their back legs going up first though. The one behind me seemed to be in a hurry to get home, so he was rubbing his head against my leg and trying to get ahead. It was really cool, I really enjoyed it.

Dinner was an amazing experience as well! It was a beautiful menu created by a Polish and a Kenyan chef. Everything was so delicious and beautifully presented. The way the staff served it was like in the movies, they had lined up in order of where we were sitting at the table, and they came out with the silver serving platters held up and they all placed them down in sync, and then lifted the covers in sync, it was very fine dining dramatic, and cool.

It’s now 11.22pm, I’ve checked under my bed for creepy crawlies, and now it’s time for sleep before a 3.45am wake up call for hot air ballooning at sunrise. I can’t wait for another amazing day at this beautiful resort.

Goodnight xx

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