Cloaked by an undulating landscape of golden-hued sand dunes lies a tranquil retreat where indulgent luxury is imbued with local inspiration in time-honoured Bedouin tradition.
A world away from the stress of big city life, yet less than an hour’s drive from the UAE capital, Al Wathba, a Luxury Collection Desert Resort & Spa issues an open invitation to breathe in the natural beauty of the Arabian desert. From an architectural aesthetic that honours the Bedouin heritage to the intimate privacy of its traditionally designed accommodation, the resort is both luxurious and delightfully authentic.
Boutique in style and accented with timeless artworks and classic Arabesque motifs, the 99 luxurious guestrooms, suites and villas are spread around the Bedouin-inspired heritage village.
A favourite with families, couples and friends, the sought-after one and two-bedroom suites feature a stunning plunge pool, jacuzzi and private balcony or terrace encircled by luscious greenery and vibrant flowers. As day slips into night, simply move from your poolside sun lounger to the dining table for an evening of great company – and great food from the resort’s award-winning culinary destinations.
Further elevate your desert escape with an unforgettable stay in one of just 13 private villas. Cleverly designed to ensure complete guest privacy, watch the sun rise and set over the dunes beyond your plunge pool, or retreat to the shaded cabana with a good book. And, for those for whom family travels demand space, service and seclusion, the capacious three-bedroom Royal Villa comes complete with a maid’s room and gazebo.
While it’s tempting to while away your stay doing as little as possible, the vast surrounding desert is your on-demand playground. A seemingly endless list of activities ticks all the boxes, whether you’re keen to be at one with nature or looking for new adrenaline thrills.
Explore the desert together with a local expert on a guided walk; take to the saddle for a gentle hack across the rolling dunes partnered with one of the resort’s impressive Arabian horses (or ponies for young explorers); or experience nomadic travel atop a camel for instant cultural immersion into Emirati tradition.
The pace invariably picks up on a Desert Crawler experience. Something of a misnomer, these 4WD Polaris dune buggies tenaciously zip along the cresting dunes for the ultimate in motorised kicks paired with mesmerising vistas of the endless desert sandscape. Two-wheel dune adventures are also on the cards with guided desert bike tours for those eager to get the heart – and legs – pumping.
Infinitely calmer but no less thrilling, an archery lesson is a fantastic way to experience one of the oldest hunting disciplines in the world first-hand, before marvelling at winged hunters in action at the sunset falcon experience.
A swimming pool, the UAE’s only desert resort wave surfing experience, and the award-winning Saray Spa perfectly complement life out on the dunes. And, as night falls, gather around the traditional bonfire to sip on a glass of Arabic tea while sharing the day’s exploits and eagerly planning tomorrow’s new adventures.
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