Five of the best Dubai hotels
Best Dubai hotels?
I’m as dismissive of the word ‘best’ as Sean Connery was in this NSFW scene from “The Rock”, especially when it comes to anything in Dubai.
My reasons are it’s so subjective, and Dubai is a city where superlatives become cliched.
However, as I’m often asked which are the ‘best hotels in Dubai' I prefer to reframe my answer as my ‘favourite hotels in Dubai', because it’s personal opinion and we all have different criteria.
So here (in no particular order) are my five favourite (or best, if you insist) Dubai hotels …
My five Best/favourite Dubai hotels – and why
Conrad Dubai, located by Dubai World Trade Centre Metro station, is in a wonderful spot for Sheik Zayed Road (and Fibber Magees).
What’s so good about Conrad Dubai?
- It’s part of Hilton Honors, so as Gold member I get lots of benefits inc. upgrade, free internet etc. every time I visit here.
- It’s aimed at business travellers and as Conrad is the top level luxury offering from Hilton Hotels, the rooms are impressive.
- They offer a selection of 3 different luxury brands of amenities in the rooms – just ring the excellent concierge service (or use the app!) to change.
- In-room teas are the from finest luxury tea brand in the world TWG
- Terrific dining, drinking & entertainment venues – such as Purobeach Urban Oasis , Cave, Vesna & VII
Four Points by Sheraton Downtown Dubai
Four Points by Sheraton Downtown Dubai is sometimes confused with their Bur Dubai hotel, as it’s only ‘around the corner’ but a world away in terms of service.
Four Points is a budget offering by Sheraton, but it’s not evident in this hotel as everything is top quality – especially the service.
This hotel is well worth considering as you get a lot of ‘bang for your buck’ given the high service levels yet relatively low room rates, and a great location for exploring ‘Old Dubai’ inc. Deira and Creek, as well as the newer ‘Downtown Dubai’.
What’s so good about Four Points by Sheraton Downtown Dubai?
- As a SPG Platinum I often get upgraded to the hotel apartment suites, as well as having complimentary breakfast or free internet and late checkout.
- Rooms are large, and with kitchens (should you wish to cook)
- A nice, cosy Yesterday Restaurant & Pub where you can watch the football, have a great Happy Hour and enjoy some cheap drinks deals.
- The Eatery Restaurant has a fantastic value evening buffet, with every night a different cuisine (e.g. seafood, Asian, Indian etc.)
Grosvenor House, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Dubai
Grosvenor House was the first hotel in Dubai Marina, and it’s still easily one of the finest.
As a SPG Platinum I often get upgraded to the 3 bedroom apartment suites, as well as having complimentary breakfast, free internet and late checkout.
What’s so good about Grosvenor House?
- Location – situated at the inlet of the Marina at Al Sufouh bridge, just a couple of minutes walk from the beach (although they offer a shuttle bus service).
- An almost Zen-like relaxing and luxurious ambiance everywhere in the hotel. It always smells fantastic and with a tangible chilled, relaxing vibe.
- Fantastic rooms, with Bulgari amenities and butler service.
- Terrific spas, including a branch of the mens grooming salon 1847
- One of the best (and most expensive) rooftop bars in Dubai, bar 44
- Wonderful variety of exceptional dining venues such as Gary Rhodes W1 and Ottomans
- Several stunning clubs and lounges – including Buddha Bar and Siddharta Lounge
- My favourite Dubai brunch – Toro Toro
InterContinental Dubai Marina
Although a relatively new hotel, the InterContinental Dubai Marina opened in mid-2015 but became an instant favourite of mine.
In a city where we are often spoiled by good service, it’s clear everyone working at InterContinental Dubai Marina are focussed on being ‘best in class’.
The Guest Relations Manager, Cara, and her front desk team are a pleasure to deal with and will always do all they can to make your stay memorable – and that’s carried through everywhere in the hotel.
As an InterContinental Ambassador, I often get upgraded including free internet, late checkout etc. but even the standard rooms are fantastic here. Whenever I get my free night vouchers, I always redeem them at InterContinental Dubai Marina.
What’s so good about InterContinental Dubai Marina?
- Easily the best all-round service I’ve experienced in Dubai.
- Great location overlooking the Marina, a lovely outdoor balcony to have one of their amazing breakfasts (with ‘real’ pork bacon!)
- Urban Lounge is a lovely pool deck, with views across the Marina
- Several great bars, including a specialist gin bar Ginter
- Hilarious Wednesday Night Comedy in Ynot hosted by Dubai Laughing, featuring a wide range of international and local comedians.
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai
The JW Marriott Marquis Dubai is the world’s tallest hotel, and is set over two towers in Business Bay.
This hotel has everything you could ever wish for, and once here there is no need to go anywhere else as it’s got a bewildering amount of exceptional restaurants, bars and lounges (14 at last count).
I am only Silver with Marriot Rewards (as this is the only Marriott property I frequent) but with the SPG acquisition it may be that Marriot Rewards becomes a better loyalty program in 2016.
What’s good about JW Marriott Marquis Dubai?
- First and foremost, the dining options are plentiful and truly exceptional. Whichever award-winning restaurant you choose from – including Izakaya (Japanese), Rang Mahal (Indian), Tong Thai (Thai) or Prime 68 (steakhouse) – you will enjoy wonderful food.
- Secondly – and perhaps most importantly – there are Entertainer Travel vouchers that enable a free night (or 20% discount)
- Rooms are large, well appointed and very, very relaxing.
- The view from the glass elevators is amazing.
- Vault (apparently the world’s highest hotel bar) has a great vibe and also one of the best Happy Hours in Dubai (that lasts for 3 hours) – very well recommended to catch up with old friends.
- Square is one of the most popular weekend clubs and Velocity is a really good sports bar with Happy Hour deals.
- Breakfast at Kitchen 6 takes place over such an expanse, you need a map to find your way back to your table.
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I stayed at both the Conrad and Intercontinental recently and agree with what you say about the staff at the Intercon: they were great. Even by Dubai’s high standards staff were very friendly and helpful and I was given a late check out for an evening flight so I could stay till I had to depart for the airport. I can’t say my experience at the Conrad was on a par with yours. I stayed in an executive suite which was great, I loved the bedroom and the view as well as the view from the bath tub. I wasn’t… Read more »
Hey Candice Thankyou for reading and for taking the time to offer feedback, it’s all welcome. I’m surprised about the Conrad as have stayed there several times, and it’s always been exceptional. Something I tend to judge hotels by is if/when things go wrong, how they are resolved and improved. It’s baffling why they didn’t settle the issues, especially as it’s Hilton’s top business brand hotel. Just out of interest, do you have any status in Hilton HHonors? I’ll put it on the list to revisit to check out 😉 Pleased that you rate the Intercontinental, and for the same… Read more »
I would agree with all but the Conrad, the only positive I came away with (Diamond member) was its proximity to the metro. Staff was arrogant, lounge was full of the loudest and most obnoxious conventioneers, dining extremely overpriced. They did provide great free breakfast though.
No comparison to the Intercon Marina (stayed there couple of weeks ago). Rooms are great, staff super and you can walk a short distance to corniche or marina for hundreds of restaurants.
Hi William, thanks for commenting and your valued feedback. It’s strange about the Conrad, as recently I’ve heard similar concerns to yours about consistency. Dubai does struggle at times with consistency, and I think there’s 3 similar ‘top end’ hotels in that area (Conrad, Sheraton Grand and The H) they may perhaps be struggling for occupancy, service and price point collectively. I agree with you about Intercontinental, especially when one can make the most of Ambassador status also and be in a more ‘happening’ area. Keep checking the site as I’m looking to review – and expand the list –… Read more »