Staying in Dubai during Ramadan? We’ve rounded up a selection of the very best places to go for iftar
Mövenpick Hotel Ibn Battuta Gate Dubai
Break the fast against the stunning backdrop of Al Bahou’s 88 illuminated Arabic lanterns at this sumptuous iftar buffet, which is inspired by Ibn Battuta’s travels through India, Italy, Morocco and Asia. Enjoy traditional dishes such as lamb ouzi, fatteh and mixed grills to the soothing sounds of an oud player. From sunset to 9pm. Dhs185 per person inclusive of food, water, Ramadan juices and soft drinks.
Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort
Relax to the sounds of live kanoun music (a traditional string instrument) at the iftar at Crescendo. Break the fast with fruit juice and a plump, stuffed date before tucking into a buffet of Arabic and international cuisine, taking your pick from classic dishes such as sambousek jebnih and mutabal, alongside oriental mixed grill and garlic prawns. From Dhs199 per adult and Dhs100 per child (6-12 years old).
Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa
For an authentic Arabian experience, journey to Al Hadheerah outdoor desert restaurant, which is being transformed into a luxurious, fully air-conditioned tent for Ramadan with nine live cooking stations and a mouthwatering buffet. Sample famous Arabic dishes like ouzi makmour while the live oud player entertains you, and then pose for photos with a falcon. From Dhs265 (Sun to Weds) or Dhs295 (Thurs to Sat); half price for ages 5-12; kids up to 4 years old go free.
Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates
The crowd is as diverse as the iftar buffet at Levantine restaurant Olea. The venue is large yet warm and welcoming, with a highly social vibe. The tables are far enough apart to allow for privacy, but close enough together so that you can chat to diners at the next table if you wish, while you munch your way through plates of mezzah, mains like beef oyster and chicken maqlooba, and indulgent desserts. Now until 14 June. Dhs210 per person.
Fried baby marrow with yoghurt tahini, roasted quail with sumac and tender chicken tagine are just some of the dishes on offer at Ewaan Ramadan Tent. If you fancy Argentinean cuisine, however, head to Asado, which has an unlimited set menu for iftar that you can sample while admiring views of The Dubai Fountains and Burj Khalifa. Thiptara is the place to go for Far Eastern fare. All Dhs255 per person; half price for ages 6-11; those under 6 dine free.
The Meydan Hotel
Foodies looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city centre can jump in a taxi to The Meydan Hotel’s Ramadan tent, which is putting on an Arabic-International inspired iftar buffet. Taste Emirati dishes such as lamb foga, or indulge in global fare like butter chicken, grilled salmon and vegetable moussaka. A dedicated kids’ play area will keep little ones amused with face painting, arts and crafts, family movies and a bouncy castle, among other activities. Dhs175 during the first 10 days of Ramadan and Dhs199 thereafter; Dhs99 for ages 5-12; free for those under four.
Palazzo Versace Dubai
Embark on a culinary journey of Italian, Persian and international cuisines curated by executive chef Mansour Memarian at this fashion-inspired hotel. At Enigma you can break the fast with Persian cheese and roasted bread, before selecting a starter, soup, main course and dessert for Dhs230 per person. Jungle-themed international restaurant Giardino is offering a family-friendly Middle Eastern buffet, in a relaxed setting. Dhs230 per person.
W Dubai – Al Habtoor City
For something a bit different, the K-Iftar (Korean themed iftar) at Namu restaurant makes a bold departure for the more traditional buffet-style spreads. It offers a home-style set menu of fine Korean dishes that rotate daily – expect favourites such as galbijjim (soy braised beef short rib), bang eo gui gochujang (marinated yellowtail fish), jijimi (assorted Korean pancake) and, of course, kimchi. Located high-up on the 31st floor, you can soak up panoramic views of Dubai Water Canal, which is illuminated by night, as dishes are served to your table. Dhs155 per person.
JW Marriott Marquis Dubai
Firmly in the charitable spirit, the world’s tallest five-star hotel has a ‘two for one’ offer on iftars during the first week of Ramadan (15-22 May) – simply download your voucher from the website. For variety, it’s hard to beat Al Fanous Lounge (pictured), which features more than 200 dishes by the Arabic speciality chef. Dhs215 per person from sunset to 8:30pm. Or, opt for the international spread at Kitchen6, which has six live cooking stations. Dhs225 per person, from sunset to 8.30pm.
Chef de cuisine Mazen Abdallah’s passion for cooking authentic Arabic cuisine shines through at Azur. There, you can taste everything from mezzeh, to fresh salads, lamb ouzi and Arabic mixed grills, and take your pick from the dedicated shawarma, manakish, soup and carving stations. Sweets include umm ali, kunafa and sticky date pudding. Dhs195 per person; Dhs98 for ages six to 12; those under six years old dine for free (with two paying adults). Available from sunset to 9pm.