The Very Best Family Resorts in Dubai
Dubai is one of the greatest worldwide destinations for family luxury holiday experiences. It is both a major city, a regional hub, and a resort destination. Travellers have a world-class selection of properties that are either new or recently built and meticulously maintained. Hotels built at the beginning of Dubai’s hospitality growth (late 20th Century) are constantly refreshed and refurbished or demolished to make way fora new exciting development.
This is a city that displays great pride in local traditions of design, craftsmanship, and service. The very best hotels and resorts interpret these traditions, combined with complementary technologies and culinary experiences, to offer some of the greatest city and resort stays for families available anywhere in the world.
Who is the best?
I have researched every luxury hotel and resort in Dubai and the surrounding areas and have created the most comprehensive list of exceptional family experiences. Results of this list are currently live on staysomeday.com as individual property profiles, with recommendations for the very best design, accommodation, amenities, services, and gastronomy for the whole family.
There are 130 luxury properties of which 31 offer family enticements of a high standard that they can be recommended by Stay Someday. Of these 31, 21 are classified as ‘Select’ Stay Someday recommendations (the base level of the very best family hotels and resorts). To qualify as a Stay Someday recommendation, properties must maintain a high level of luxury as well as have significant family services and amenities. 7 hotels are recommended as Stay Someday ‘Elite’ properties. These have exceptional offerings, a very high level of luxury, and will often offer customised programs for young guests.
The Stay Someday ‘Top Du Top’ category is reserved for the truly exceptional properties that are not only world-class in luxury but also industry leaders in activities and amenities for families. Top Du Top hotels and resorts must have unique programs that give young guests an insight into local culture, introduce them to the wider city, and include a wide range of ages from infants to teenagers. There is one ‘Top Du Top’ property in Dubai.
My Two Favourite Resorts in Dubai
Two properties stand above all others: one a Stay Someday ‘Elite’ recommendation, the other an ultimate ‘Top Du Top’ recommendation. These are the Four Seasons Dubai Resort at Jumeirah Beach and the One&Only Royal Mirage. The Four Seasons is a Forbes Five Star resort, opened in 2014, and located on the famous Jumeirah Beachfront. The One&Only Royal Mirage was one of the very first luxury resorts, opened 1999, and is on the Mina Seyahi beachfront at the opening to The Palm Jumeirah development.
Both properties stand out in a city of the very best hotels, as resorts of high standards in design and presentation, the very best service, a world of delicious flavours, significant amenities and services for adult and young guests, as well as dedicated programs for children (KidsOnly at One&Only and Kids for All Seasons at the Four Seasons).
The Four Seasons Dubai Resort Jumeirah Beach
The Four Seasons Dubai Resort Jumeirah Beach is the only Stay Someday ‘Top Du Top’ recommendation and Forbes Five Star property in Dubai. What this Four Seasons does so well is it provides an experience of an exclusive residential resort, with the feel of a comfortable and stylish home away from home. Fine materials and fixtures are combined to comfort with elegance. The grandeur of soaring atriums, marble columns, and intricate craftsmanship provide a sense of place and drama. Here guests enjoy a relaxed and refined atmosphere that is tranquil and enjoyable whether you are at an afternoon tea service in the Mercury Lounge, laying by the shores of the winding resort pools, or participating in a tennis match at the hard courts by the setting sun.
Dining cover all tastes from Italian to Peruvian, Pan-Asian, Turkish, Myconian, and modern plant-based cuisine. There are special dining experiences with themed buffets (a signature of the city’s great hotels), private cabana dining poolside, and even overwater dining on a specially furnished barge.
Where the Four Seasons also excels is through Kids for All Seasons program. This covers education and entertainment in the kids club, special amenities and surprises in-room, and extra special (and rare) services of teen spa offerings, and a teen concierge. It is an added bonus that guests here have privileged access to the Wild Wadi Waterpark, Dubai Aquarium and Underwater Zoo, and Ski Dubai.
This property is also very close to great shopping (Dubai Mall, Mall of the Emirates), and sightseeing (Burj Al Arab, The World, The Palm Jumeirah). Four Seasons Bentley’s are available to chauffeur guests to nearby interests. On top of these benefits, the Four Seasons Dubai Resort Jumeirah Beach also organises cultural outings such as market and souk visits, food tours, and expeditions on the Arabian Gulf.
The One&Only Royal Mirage Resort
One&Only Royal Mirage shares many of the outstanding enticements of the Four Seasons Jumeirah Beach with a few special touches of their own. When it comes to grand multi-room accommodations, it is hard to top the exclusive villas at the One&Only. It is also a testament to design and dedication that although this property opened over 20 years ago, it appears modern, well maintained, and beautiful in every public space and guest accommodation.
Where the Four Seasons is a low rise palace with tropical gardens and pools leading to a private beachfront (14 acres), the One&Only is an incredible estate set over 65 acres of verdant gardens, several accommodations, dining and wellness structures, and an amazing length of private beachfront (1km). This comes with every activity a family could want either poolside, beachside, or in the Arabian Gulf.
The Health and Beauty Institute is dedicated to relaxation and therapies with ESPA products and a variety of excellent grooming salons. There are over 16 dining and drinking establishments with choices from European favourites, to Middle Eastern, Asian, South American, and Moroccan flavours.
The One&Only also includes substantial outdoor and indoor amenities for children such as their kid’s club, playgrounds, water activities, and in-room luxury camping. The KidsOnly is a world-class program that is educational and fun for kids of all ages. This resort excels at catering to kids from infant ages to early teens. Cultural excursions are also a specialty of this resort, and its position at the entrance to the Palm Jumeirah allows quick access to attractions at the connected Atlantis resort with its Aquaventure waterpark and aquarium facilities.
Both the Four Seasons Dubai Resort Jumeirah Beach and One&Only Royal Mirage are stunning examples of the very best in family luxury resorts worldwide. They present every service and amenity a family would want, with a great selection of offerings to both adults and kids of all ages. They present these unforgettable getaways in some of the most beautiful and serene surroundings, connected to the great sights of Dubai city.
The experience, care, and dedication of the staff are present throughout the hotel management all the way to the door staff. Great resorts such as these understand it is in the finest details, the smallest gestures, and every team member, that create memorable and effortless stays for their lucky guests. Every Stay Someday recommendation is an exceptional experience, but these two resorts are the best of the best and represent everything great about Dubai.