With 14 February just around the corner, Dubai deserves to top your list for the perfect getaway. Whatever your idea of romance and no matter where your interests lie – exquisite resorts, unforgettable dinners under the stars, desert getaways or even action-packed adventure – Dubai promises to enchant.
For a truly breath-taking experience, a trip to Dubai’s desert is not to be missed. Watch the sun rise over the dunes and city skyline as you take to the skies in a hot air balloon. Exhilarating yet tranquil and undeniably romantic, you’ll fly alongside peregrine falcons as you soar above the desert with uninterrupted, 360-degree views over the rippling sand.
If you’d rather stay closer to the ground, opt for a private dinner for two amid the dunes of the Arabian desert. You’ll be picked up by your own chauffeur, who will drive you into the desert for a gourmet dinner in a private Bedouin-style tent.
For overnight stays, the five-star Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa is the last word in desert luxury. Tucked away in a lush oasis, the resort’s suites are inspired by Bedouin tents and boast their own infinity pool, looking out onto the desert sands.
For Thrill Seekers
If adventure’s more your thing, check out the host shared activities that are sure to bring you and your significant other closer than ever.
Newly opened at Dubai Marina is XLine, the world’s longest urban zip line. It extends a full kilometre, rises 170 metres above the ground and features two zip lines running adjacent to one another. So, strap yourselves in and zip across the Marina in tandem.
Alternatively, why not visit Aventura in Dubai’s Mushrif Park in Mirdif? Covering more than 35,000 square metres, this treetop rope course features zip-lining, rope climbing and even a Tarzan Swing.
For a more secluded, rural outdoor experience, escape to Dubai’s exclave of Hatta surrounded by the Hajar Mountains. You can hike through mountain passes and wadis (dry canyon riverbeds), take a dip in the area’s rock pools, or kayak out on Hatta Dam’s stunning blue waters.
With restaurant options to suit every taste and budget, Dubai is a gastronomic paradise. Beautifully designed interiors, exquisite menus and intimate atmospheres combine to make the city the perfect place to treat your partner this Valentine’s.
Situated at the end of the pier, with captivating views across the Arabian Gulf, Pierchic offers a stunning ‘over-the-water’ dining experience alongside some of the best seafood dishes in town.
Greek Aegean-styled restaurant Fish Beach Taverna, located in Le Meridien Hotel Mina Seyahi, features twinkling lights, delicious food and beachside dining, making for a thoroughly romantic atmosphere.
Offering unrivalled views of The Dubai Fountain and the iconic Burj Khalifa, Karma Kafé by Buddha-Bar sets the scene for a truly magical dining experience. Set inside Souk Al Bahar, the restaurant serves a fusion of Pan-Asian and international flavours, set against a background soundtrack of oriental and eclectic beats.
In addition to their usual menus, many of Dubai’s top restaurants will be offering diners with exclusive Valentine’s packages. This includes The Fairmont Palm Hotel & Resort, which is introducing special set menus across three of its dining concepts; Seagrill Restaurant and Lounge, Little Miss India and The Mashrabiya Lounge.
For the Young at Heart
Dubai is a veritable playground for the young and ‘young at heart’, and has now become the theme park capital of the region – offering you and your loved one the perfect excuse to let your down and embrace your inner child.
Opened in 2016, IMG Worlds of Adventure is the largest indoor theme park in the world; five themed zones containing state-of-the-art thrill-rides bring all your favourite characters to life, from the likes of The Avengers and Spiderman, to the life-size dinosaurs in The Lost Valley zone.
Located in the city’s other theme park destination, Dubai Parks and Resorts, Motiongate Dubai is a Hollywood-inspired adventure land, featuring 27 rides inspired by 13 memorable action and animation films, including The Ghostbusters, Shrek and The Hunger Games. Also within Dubai Parks and Resorts is the unique Bollywood Parks, the first theme park in the world dedicated to all things Bollywood. A celebration of Mumbai’s legendary film industry, the park features five zones, each inspired by one of Bollywood’s biggest blockbusters.
Dubai is also home to two of the best waterparks in the world. Part of Dubai’s iconic Atlantis The Palm hotel, Aquaventure is overflowing with 17 fun-filled hectares of breath-taking thrills including the Leap of Faith, a nine-storey mega-slide that hurtles riders down a near-vertical drop in a blink of an eye, and Poseidon’s Revenge, which plummets riders through the heart of the waterpark’s tower at speeds of 60 kilometres per hour.
Located on Jumeriah Beach, close to the Burj Al Arab, Wild Wadi is Dubai’s first waterpark and is themed around the tale of Juha, a known character from the Arabian folklore. The park features a whopping 30 different rides for all ages.
For Culture Vultures
Treat your significant other to a sophisticated night out at Dubai Opera. Located in the heart of Downtown Dubai, this striking dhow-shaped building is a masterpiece of contemporary architecture, with state-of- the-art design features ensuring an acoustic experience. Fittingly, this Valentine’s Dubai Opera is hosting the Polish National Opera’s critically-acclaimed production of classic love story Aïda.
With a story that’s inspired by the spirit of Dubai, La Perle is a one-of-a-kind live show that gives similar Las Vegas performances a run for their money. The theatre uses state-of-the-art technology and houses an aqua-stage complete with a 12-metre-deep pool filled with 2.7 million litres of water. Prepare to be astounded as 65 world-class performers from 23 countries perform breath-taking and extraordinary stunts, ranging from acrobatics and contortion to flying and diving.
For Label Lovers
If your idea of romance involves retail, then you’ll be pleased to hear that Dubai has one of the greatest concentrations of retail brands of any city in the world – second only to London – making it a fashion
follower’s paradise. Covering over 440,000 square feet, Fashion Avenue in The Dubai Mall has the largest collection of global fashion brands under one roof.
Alternatively, if you’re looking for great deals on top fashion labels, head to The Outlet Village, the UAE’s first upscale outlet shopping destination. Inspired by classical Tuscan architecture, and housing over 120 brands ranging from Armani and Lanvin to Sandro and The Kooples, The Outlet Village offers visitors an unforgettable shopping experience in a striking environment.
If you’re looking for a curated experience packed full of insider knowledge, La Ville Hotel & Suites in Dubai’s City Walk offers an indulgent shopaholic ‘Exactly Like Nothing Else’ package. Here, you can choose from two half-day shopping experiences: ‘Off the Beaten Track’, where you’ll discover vintage treasures and local designers in independent villas; and ‘The Mall Trawl’, a private tour of the best malls in the city with shortcuts to the top luxury department stores.