My (mini) Guide to Dubai

This post is long overdue, but better late than never. Time seems to go so slowly whilst I’m recovering from my CF, then in a blink I realise it’s been over two weeks since I returned from Dubai. Honestly, I would love to be back there right now!
At my Doctor’s appointment a month or so ago (I couldn’t even tell you which one it was, there’s been too many!) my Doctor went over my blood results and chatted to me about how my recovery was going. Although I had seem some (slow) improvements, he said that most of his patients really benefit from the sun. I looked at Mum and we both read each others minds..”well we won’t be able to get any sun in the UK…”. The Doctor continued, “If you could, I would recommend getting some sun abroad as it really helps the recovery process and gives you immediate exposure to vitamin D.”
Well, that’s all my Mum and I needed to hear, of course we wouldn’t grumble at a girly, relaxing holiday, especially if it was doctors orders!
Mum is so good at searching for good holiday destinations and deals online. We umm’d and ahh’d over a few places in Europe but were conscious of the weather. Mum stumbled across an amazing deal in Dubai, and within a click, it was booked. I actually think I screamed with excitement and headed straight to my cupboard to start packing as we were due to leave in 3 days! Quick turn around, but I was not complaining! For those of you that didn’t know, I lived in Dubai for 2 years whilst I did my GCSE’s before coming back to the UK for boarding school. My parents were there for 7 years in total, which meant guaranteed sun for me and my brother at least 3 times a year when we visited! THE DREAM!

Let’s skip to the part where we’d arrived in Dubai. Both myself and my Mum were so excited to experience Dubai as a holiday destination, rather than our home. Dubai has become one of the worlds most popular tourist destinations; with perfect weather nearly all year round, stunning beaches, wonderful shopping, culinary hot spots and amazing service, there really isn’t much to complain about. We stayed at ‘The Grovesnor House’ hotel situated close to Dubai marina. This hotel allows its guests access to ‘Le Meridien Beach Resort and Spa’ which is a close, complimentary shuttle ride away. Le Meridien is a gorgeous resort, with amazing facilities, direct private beach access, and a hub holding some of the top restaurants in Dubai. Our half board deal meant we had breakfast and dinners included, and could choose from any of the 8 restaurants from both hotels. We basically had 2 hotels to choose from everyday, it was pretty damn special!
The one thing the trip reminded me of was how amazing the service is in Dubai. Honestly, it is second to none. All the staff go above and beyond to cater for you to ensure your stay is perfect. Even in breakfast the chef would personally cater for my gluten and dairy free dietary requirements, making me free from waffles, bircher muesli, and he even had a fresh avocado cut ready for me to put on my GF toast on arrival. Now, that is a way to an avocado lovers heart, just saying.
When in Dubai- just ask!!
My top tip for Dubai is to ‘just ask’. I guarantee that if you need something extra all you need to do is ask, because everyone will always go the extra mile to help!
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My avocado toast on the first day- I understand it’s becoming a bit of an obsession, but it seriously tastes so good. Especially with peppery rocket on top! A good healthy breakfast to fuel me for the day ahead.. a day of sunbathing!!
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The fruit in the morning was also amazing! Why does it always taste so much better abroad!
I feel like this post could go on for forever, so instead I’m going to tell you about a few special moments and things to look out for if you visit! So..
Ladies Night- 
I never got to experience Ladies Nights when I lived in Dubai because I was too young, but a Ladies Night in Dubai is something quite spectacular. Basically, Ladies Nights are held in various bars and restaurants throughout Dubai on most nights of the week, where the general deal is for us ladies to be given 3 drinks tokens for 3 free cocktails. Let me add, these aren’t watered down, tasteless cocktails. So, if you’re anything like me, 3 cocktails will sort you out for the night, and send you a little wobbly. Honestly, I wasn’t too up for lots of drinks and late nights on this trip as my aim was to rest, but Mum and I were saying, if you wanted to plan it well enough, you could get free drinks most nights of the week! Boys, don’t stop reading, because if you head out on one of these nights with your lovely lady, you’re in for a pretty cheap date!
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Maya, Le Meridian Beach Resort-
If you love Mexican food, keep reading. Honestly, I’m not normally a huge fan of Mexican style food, purely because I expect it to be lathered in cheese and full of gluten. However, Maya Dubai offers a very fresh Mexican inspired menu, with plenty of gluten and dairy free options or as I said if you ‘just ask’ they will cater a dish to your needs. I’ve also slightly changed my opinion on such a cuisine as the menu was saturated with avocado.
“You can’t please everyone, you’re not an avocado”
This saying is so perfect. Anyway, back to the menu. Full of Margaritas from Ladies Night, we then went on to chose these delicious dishes..
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(Front) I had fresh Guacamole with gluten free homemade tortilla chips/ (Behind) Mum tucked into Nachos, with all the toppings!

Above are the two main dishes. The lamb (left) was on a bed of roasted veggies and topped with an avocado blitzed sauce with some peppery radishes. It literally melted in your mouth. The other dish (right) was a lovely fresh piece of salmon with a mango salsa and a topping of plantain chips. Apart from both of these dishes being amazingly tasty, the colours are so vibrant and loud, making it all the more enjoyable to eat. The dishes were both light and healthy, (apart from the tortilla chips maybe haha) I couldn’t recommend Maya more!
And just to cleanse the palate..
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Can I just add, all of these dishes were included in the half board menu, we didn’t pay an extra penny for this food!
Zengo, Le Meridien Beach Resort- 
Another of our favourites that definitely deserves a mention is Zengo! Zengo specialises in Pan Asian flavours, for all tastes. Even better, as you drink and dine, whether indoors or alfresco, you can get in the mood with music from the live DJ. Here’s a few pictures of our meal. Anyone visiting Dubai, or even living in Dubai, you must visit this place; from sushi, to sashimi, fresh tempura, curries, wok dishes, there is something for everyone!

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Special mention for this dish. You may be thinking this is a ceviche dish topped with an egg, but you’re sooo wrong! It’s a mango yolk! Super cool.
Pamper- 
My favourite nail salon in Dubai has to be ‘N bar’. There are numerous salons dotted all around Dubai, and conveniently one on the fourth floor of our hotel; The Grovesnor House. This is the same salon Mum and I used to visit when we lived there. It was just like old times! Check them out!
Shopping- 
The Mall of the Emirates is pretty close to where we were stayed, so we opted for this one. You could however head to the biggest mall in the world, Dubai Mall. MOE had everything we needed this time, but if you fancy a workout and a fair few more stores, Dubai Mall is your place. You will walk so far you won’t even need to do your evening run! Be sure to grab a Pulp juice while you’re there too, their smoothies are amazing!!

Finally, apart from all of the wonderful things to do in Dubai, it is also an amazing place to relax. I came back feeling well rested, healthy and happy, and I’d upped my Vitamin D levels after receiving blood results back. My tan is with me still, although it won’t be too long till it needs a top up!
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I hope you enjoyed the read, let me know your thoughts and anything else you might want to know about Dubai. After living there I feel like I can answer a lot of your questions.
Sopha x

One thought on “My (mini) Guide to Dubai

  1. Sylvia Brookes says:

    That was a great read Sophie made me want o go back now. Love Dubai.
    Now did you go on the sky train. Last time we were there with your Mum she had not experienced it and Colin said next time we come I’m taking you on it. But they are back in the U.K. Now. So we are curious ” has she or has she not ”
    Sounds like you got a brill deal.
    Did you by any chance see The real Cheshire housewifes last night they were in Dubai.
    Colin said if they go out dressed like that they would be arrested. You can get it on Catck up ITV.be Monday 10pm.
    Wishing you well Sophie. Love to your Mum and Dad.
    Love Sylvia xx

    Liked by 1 person

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