For the pamper-loving girls
Dubai is awash with sensational spas offering heavenly treatments from hammams to four-hand massages. Get ready to relax.
By Luxury Travel magazine
With a dazzling array of international and home-grown spa brands, in magnificent and luxurious surroundings, you’re truly spoilt for choice when it comes to pampering. Dubai is famous for its ultra-indulgent treatments – 24-carat gold facial, anyone? Its spas are regularly voted the world’s best. Here are some of the city’s stars.
Madinat Jumeirah Dubai
Set among tropical gardens, this Arabian-themed spa has 26 treatment rooms, steam rooms, plunge pools, swanky relaxation rooms and a lovely outdoor pool. There’s a wide collection of facials by Sodashi and Margie Lombard, pampering spa treatments and homeopathic, Ayurvedic and wellness therapies.
Must-try treatment: Margy’s Hyaluron Collagen Facial, an intensive hydration treatment that promises to plump skin in 90 minutes. jumeirah.com
Talise Ottoman Spa
Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, The Palm
At the heart of this spa – the largest and most luxurious in the Middle East – is a spectacular Turkish hammam decorated with mosaics and murals. There are 42 therapy rooms and over 50 treatments, including Dubai’s most expensive: a 24-carat gold facial from skincare expert to the stars, Margie Lombard (Dhs25,000 or A$7,346).
Must-try treatment: The Coffee Peeling Hammam, an hour-long treatment that involves a full body exfoliation, foam massage and peel using Turkish coffee. jumeirah.com
Park Hyatt Dubai, Deira
This Moorish-style gem has an impressive menu of therapies by Natura Bissé, Anne Semonin and Aromatherapy Associates, along with exotic rituals using the powers of sapphires, rubies, emeralds and diamonds to revitalise, detox, relax and energise.
Must-try treatment: The Diamond Enrich Body Scrub, with mineral salts, coffee, frankincense and grapefruit oils, promises to revive dull skin in 45 minutes. dubai.park.hyatt.com
Armani Hotel Dubai, Downtown Dubai
You can’t help but feel good in the super sleek Armani Spa. At this spa, you don’t book a treatment, you book a time, and depending on how you feel on the day, you can choose your method of pampering. As you would expect, the design is understated and beautiful.
Must-try treatment: The ARMANI/SPA Signature treatment combines Japanese Shiatsu, Thai, traditional and acupressure techniques. Hot and cold stones are used (on face, or body) before you’re wrapped in luxurious Armani black silk. dubaiarmanihotels.com
One&Only Private Spa
One&Only The Palm
Surrounded by fountains and courtyards, this plush sanctuary features a hammam, steam rooms, hot tubs and 12 therapy rooms. Face and body treatments to unwind, restore and elevate are by ESPA, plus there’s Bastien Gonzalez hand and foot treatments and a hair salon.
Must-try treatment: Bastien’s Duo Treatment, a 75-minute manicure and pedicure with two therapists working in tandem. thepalm.oneandonlyresorts.com
Raffles Dubai, Oud Metha
This striking pyramid-shaped hotel is one of the city’s best-loved landmarks. The full-service spa has seven treatment rooms, with a good range of beauty and body therapies and spa packages, and a lush tropical garden for chilling out after your treatment.
Must-try treatment: The Signature Caviar Facial, a 90-minute anti-aging ritual that uses antioxidant-rich caviar, glycolics and a peel off masque. raffles.com
Burj Al Arab, Jumeirah
On the 18th floor of Dubai’s iconic hotel are saunas, steam rooms, plunge and infinity pools, plus treatment rooms overlooking the ocean. There’s a comprehensive menu of treatments from top brands including La Prairie and Thémaé, plus grooming services such as eyelash extensions and threading.
Must-try treatment: The 75-minute Signature Massage combines traditional shiatsu, Thai, Swedish and Balinese techniques. jumeirah.com
Waldorf Astoria Spa
Waldorf Astoria Dubai, The Palm
This newcomer to Dubai’s spa scene has herbal steam rooms, saunas, hot tubs, and an ice fountain. On the menu are close to 50 treatments, including hand and feet treats from chiropodist to the stars, Margaret Dabbs.
Must-try treatment: The 40-minute Margaret Dabbs Total Pedicure will leave your feet feeling super-soft and ready for strappy sandals.
Le Royal Meridien Beach Resort & Spa, Dubai Marina
Spread over three floors, this Roman spa complex has a series of hammams, saunas, steam rooms and Jacuzzis. There is a broad range of beauty and body treatments by Elemis and Pevonia, including facials, massage, and reflexology.
Must-try treatment: Moroccan Rassoul Body Wrap, a 75-minute treatment that sees you slathered in warm, mineral-rich Rassoul mud to purify and hydrate skin.
The Spa at the Address
The Address Downtown, Downtown Dubai
This sleek city spa has steam and aroma rooms, an ice-cave and rain-dance shower. It specialises in massages, with an exquisite Oriental Room for Thai and Shiatsu-inspired treatments, plus ten more rooms for face and body treatments such as purifying body wraps and mani-pedis.
Must-try treatment: The hour-long Four Hands Massage uses the hands and techniques of two therapists at once, leaving you ultra-relaxed. theaddress.com
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, Business Bay
One of the city’s newest spas, the Saray Spa is at the heart of the tallest hotel in the world. All products are locally sourced from natural ingredients.
Must-try treatment: The Saray Golden Hammam which combines a traditional Hammam with Gold oil infused with 24-carat gold leaf, followed by a golden clay body wrap. marriott.com
ShuiQi Spa & Fitness
Atlantis, The Palm
Spread over two floors and with 27 treatment rooms, this award-winning spa has face and body treatments from skin care gurus Shiseido and Aromatherapy Associates, foot treatments from Bastien Gonzalez, and medispa services from teeth whitening to botox.
Must-try treatment: The four-hour Japanese Ritual that includes a rose petal foot bath, full body Qi massage, Shiseido facial and scalp massage. atlantisthepalm.com
Sofitel The Palm, Dubai
This huge, ground-floor spa has a wide range of treatments using Hei Poa and Anne Semonin products, and French and Polynesian-themed spa experiences. There are 28 therapy rooms, as well as steam rooms and plunge pool.
Must-try treatment: Shirodhara, a 45-minute Ayurvedic treatment where warmed oil is slowly poured over the forehead to calm and clear the mind. sofitel.com
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Weather to go
The emirate has a sub-tropical desert climate, which means blue skies and beach weather in winter (Dec-Jan) and hot and humid summers (Jun-Aug). The best time to visit is from October to April when temperatures are in the mid-20°Cs to low-30°Cs. July and August are the hottest months as the mercury rarely dips below 40°C, still the city accommodates this with indoor attractions and air-conditioned facilities everywhere.
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