If spending more time with loved ones is at the top of your list this year, then it’s high time to feel the family-friendly staycay vibes at Fairmont The Palm
There are two main camps of people when it comes to organising family holidays: those who are open to going with the flow, and those who prefer to precision plan their stays. If you fall into the latter category, you’ll be cursed with a checklist as long as your arm that no doubt has to be carefully cross examined before committing to leaving the house with the little ones in tow. Common points that are non-negotiable include having an entertaining kids’ club, toddler-friendly swimming pool and plenty of space to spread out in. Thankfully, families are blessed with an impressive number of staycation options in the UAE, and Fairmont The Palm is on the radar as a top choice for parents in search of a fuss-free break away.
Tucked along the trunk of Palm Jumeirah, the hotel’s island location lends a fun, vacation vibe – there’s something about feeling the salty sea breeze wash over you that screams “holiday”. Those of you with younger kids will agree that a speedy check-in is worth its weight in gold and the aptly named Fairmont Gold experience is like getting access to a secret hotel within a hotel. With it, you’ll be able to usher the kids straight past the main reception and up to the ninth floor where a private, lounge-style space awaits. Simply collect your key as your kids gulp down fresh juice and get stuck into their activity packs, and you’ll be in your room in a flash.
Fairmont Gold Rooms come with one king bed or two queen beds, with cots available upon request, and interconnecting rooms available for larger broods. If you need more space still, you can upgrade to a suite, the pinnacle of which is the Deluxe Suite, which has a separate living room and dedicated dining space, as well as an adjoining butler’s pantry, large terrace and access to all the signature benefits, such as complimentary breakfast in the lounge and afternoon tea served from 2-4pm.
Adventure in spades
If you’re eager to get out and enjoy the winter sunshine, the swimming pools and beach are enough to keep you busy for hours on end. You’ll find the family pools to the right of the hotel – the first you come across is the shallowest where kids are free to roam, under a watchful eye, without wandering out of their depth (our two-year-old couldn’t touch the bottom near the basketball hoop, but the rest of the pool was perfect for him). Just beyond this is the splash park where vibrant sprinklers invite water babies to play.
The private beach (open from 6.30am to sunset, depending on the season) is reached via a short walkway which opens out to a stretch of soft sand and marked swimming area, with great views towards Dubai Marina and the Ain Dubai Ferris wheel.
There are plenty of watersports available, from kayaking to sailing lessons and there’s also a cool line-up of fitness activities to try, such as PRAMA by Pavigym, which will put a hi-tech spin on your training session as you strive to stay in step with the interactive floor. If you need to occupy the children while you sweat it out, you can drop them at Fairmont Falcons Kids’ Club (for ages 18 months to six years) where they can tackle the climbing wall, get absorbed in arts and crafts, play dress up or kick back with video games in the chillout zone.
Family-friendly dining venues are easy to come by, with Flow Kitchen offering something to suit all tastes – the Friday family lunch is especially popular among guests of all ages. Blowfish does American style ‘grab and go’ dishes such as burgers and crazy shakes by the beach while the vibrant interiors of Little Miss India invite you to taste Indian cuisine. There are children’s menus available at the majority of venues, offering a healthy twist on the usual kid-friendly favourites, but if you don’t feel like leaving your room, the in-room dining is a great option (we’ve never seen our kids devour so much food in one sitting). Order glasses of milk for your pyjama-clad mini-mes so they can settle down to sleep while you sneak out onto the terrace to recount memories of the day.
Inspired to go? Click here for the latest offers