I love vacations ... who doesn't? However, with our busy work schedule, children's schooling and tight budget it may not be possible to go on vacation as often as we want to. But there's a solution ... a staycation perhaps? A convenient escape within our own city without breaking the bank is always a good idea! That's what the husband and I decided to do last weekend. We felt that we deserved a break - he from his office and me from the kitchen! And what better way to spend it than a staycation at Beach Rotana.
We checked into Beach Rotana late on Thursday evening for our two-day staycation. The hotel enjoys a convenient location in the heart of Abu Dhabi and is great for business and pleasure alike. Check-in was a breeze! While we were at the counter, I couldn't help but admire the atrium in the lobby. The design on the ceiling was such an eye-catcher! Even though I have visited Beach Rotana on several occasions, it still fascinates me.
Our room which was big, bright and airy had a lovely partial view of the hotel's private beach. It was a non-smoking room with a king size bed and fluffy pillows. The bathroom was tidy and equipped with necessary toiletries. We had forgotten our toothbrushes at home and the housekeeping were kind enough to provide them to us. All that was left now was a short evening nap.
Later that night, we headed to one of our favourite bars in Abu Dhabi - Trader Vic's to have a few exotic drinks and enjoy some foot-tapping Cuban music.
The following morning we forced ourselves out from our comfy bed only because we did not want to skip breakfast. I'm glad we did. Breakfast was a feast! It included a wide variety of international and local breakfast specialties, buffet style. You had everything from parathas, congee, assorted fruits to smoked salon and grilled beef. There was a live cooking station for eggs and a wide selection of hot beverages. Among everything, mushroom dumplings and the grilled beef were my favourites!
So, what did we do after breakfast? We headed back to our bed! Its not everyday that we get to sleep on soft, bouncy beds ...
Friday brunch at Beach Rotana was a treat for the senses. They had food from three of their best restaurants in addition to a lively band. (Click here to find out more about my brunch experience).
In the afternoon we wanted to explore the hotel's 5-star amenities. The garden at the hotel looked like a tropical oasis with little waterfalls and cactus everywhere. Beach Rotana has its own private beach that stretches along the entire length of the hotel. It was clean and well maintained with a number of umbrellas and sun loungers.
A 2-minute walk from the beach got us right to their amazing pool. And you know what the best part was? It had a bar! If there's one thing I love about any pool, its a pool bar. I love sipping on exotic cocktails while taking a dip. The water temperature was perfect and the pool wasn't too crowded. There was a children's pool right next to ours and a play area as well.
The next morning, we stuck to a light breakfast before checking out from the hotel. It an incredible stay and we were all set to welcome another work week!
On the last night of our staycation, we headed to Trader Vic's yet again for another round of drinks before retiring for the night.
I have tried a number of maid services while living in Dubai. There were some who were really good and some terrible! When I moved to Abu Dhabi, I had trouble finding maids. One company wanted to charge me Dhs 800 for 4 hours to clean an unfurnished house! I was like, "What? Is your mop made of gold?"
Recently, I decided to give maids.ae a shot. I had a choice of two slots - 9 am-1 pm or 2 pm-6 pm. I opted for the morning slot. If I had any specific requirements (like watering the plants, closing the front door at all times because of the cats, etc.) I had to tell them at the time of booking.
My male housemaid Andrew arrived at 8.55 am. Before starting his job, he analysed the house and asked me whether I needed anything in specific to be cleaned. I said "Yes! my balcony"! For the next 4 hours, Andrew worked non-stop to make my house the way it is right now ... "spic n span". There wasn't a table nor window that was left untouched. He had all the dust removed from every corner. Never have I seen my balcony so squeaky clean! If he had any queries in between, he would ask me. This man had a great personality and timed his job quite well. By 1 pm, he was done!
I was very impressed with Andrew's work. It was the 1st time that we had a male housemaid clean our home and although my husband was at work I felt safe in his presence. I highly recommend maids.ae!
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