I’ve just come back from a trip to Dubai, where I have been several times, and I must say, it was as delightful as always ☺
It’s in the new and exquisite W Dubai The Palm that I spent a week full of colours, design, and fun.
This chain of hotels, that I particularly like for having visited many, including the W South Beach, the W Maldives, the W Amsterdam and the W Barcelona, is well known for its trendy and relaxed atmosphere as well as its signature ultra-design.
Each building takes its inspiration from historical and social aspects, to give life to the local culture, and tell its stories through subtle items set in carefully decorated areas.
The overall effect is a unique experience for us all !!
The W Dubai The Palm is situated in The Jumeirah, the biggest man-made island in the world. It acts as a peaceful retreat in its luxurious and private isle, close to Dubai downtown and marina.
As soon as I arrived, the exterior of the Resort took my breath away; it was a pure architectural jewel, inspired by the desert dunes. In fact, we can notice the physical elements from the surrounding environment – like the dunes and geometric lines of the skyscrapers – inside the complex; in the shapes of the buildings, the pools, the gardens, and the walls in the rooms.
As I had a truly magic time there, I will now share some of my best experiences and describe my favourite designs at the W Dubai The Palm.
It would be unthinkable not to start with the W monument, majestically standing in the entrance of the hotel! Its motifs depict the patterns of a dried-up river bed in the desert and it is backlighted to highlight the surrounding colours.
The actual entrance of the W Palm Dubai is simply incredible ☺
It is a curved area resembling what they call a ‘Falage’, which is a cavernous river bed, all covered with palm fronds, hence preventing the river water from evaporating.
The floor has motifs depicting Dubai’s skyscrapers, while the spectacular curved ceiling resembles the palm fronds. At night, the latter is lit up with neon lights of different colours for a magical effect! Beautiful mosaic tiles cover the walls, again reflecting the foliage.
Outside, these tiles are a golden colour but, as we step in, past the entrance, they take on colours such as greens, blues, oranges, and reds.
The ‘Citadel’ lobby is a pure delight for the eyes.
On either side, the two walls are scattered with small coloured windows of different colours. The result is astonishing : reminiscent of local fortresses, where soldiers could secretly observe their enemies!
At the centre of this incredible space, there is a gigantic suspension: ‘the W Soundwave’, a visual vector representing the sound wave of the letter W. Made by Lasvit, this superb light installation weighs 6 and a half tons, measures 30 metres long, and has 1200 pieces of glass.
It illuminates in alternating colours and intensities, to the beats of the resident DJ! Truly amazing ☺
These are some other items that drew my attention in the lobby:
- Scattered in many places, the shelving blocks made of brass – each different from one another – really depict, in my view, the different constructions we see throughout Dubai city.
- The rugs on the floor undeniably draw your attention. The wavy patterns are representing Dubai’s surrounding waters, and the motifs reflect the ongoing constructions.
- The incredible ‘Dolorez’ sofa, which you cannot miss, is an amazing 13 meters long. Covered with different fabrics in tones evocative of the earth and the rocks, it resembles a desert mountain range.
- Finally, the end of the lobby leads to an impressive corridor with illuminated lines from floor to ceiling, resulting in a stunning visual effect !
My trip wouldn’t be complete without a culinary experience, so I set off to try some of the restaurants a the W Dubai The Palm ☺
I will start with the Italian ‘Torno Subito’, meaning ‘I’ll be right back’. It is the Massimo Bottura’s (2016 World Best Chef) only restaurant outside of Italy.
I loved its happy and colourful design; a throwback to Bottura’s childhood holidays in the 60’s Italian Riviera.
The food is exquisite… and I particularly liked the Chef’s reimagined desserts ☺
The second restaurant was the SoBE, local appellation for Miami’s South Beach, where I had a very pleasant evening ☺
I adored its design, inspired by the vibrant and eclectic spirit of Miami.
The space is incredible, with impressive ceiling heights, and a mix of an Art Deco style with Street art on the walls. The neon suspension that comes out of the ceiling looks down on furniture that is sometimes streamlined and sometimes neo-classical.
Sa description ne serait pas complète si je ne mentionnais pas sa terrasse extérieure offrant une vue époustouflante sur les gratte ciels de Dubaï et le golfe arabique…
I wouldn’t have fully described the place, had I not included its terrace overlooking the stunning Dubai’s skyscrapers and the Arabian Gulf; definitely an ideal place to enjoy a delicious cocktail ☺
The last one that I tried was the Japanese restaurant ‘Akira Back’; a must for all the fans of Japanese food.
Its design refers to ‘Wabi-Sabi’ art, which looks to find beauty in imperfection and thus accepting the natural cycle of growth, decay and death. Broken pieces are repositioned to find their new use and beauty.
We find impressive concrete walls adorned with colourful mosaics, constructed from pieces of porcelain, thus illustrating the above mentioned precept.
I must admit, the designs are so rich, that on each of my many walks around the different areas of the W Dubai The Palm, new elements caught my eyes ☺
I now come onto the W Lounge, which is split into two areas.
The first one is the Bar, nestled in an incredible brass structure. Isn’t it common knowledge that everything is possible in Dubai ?! ☺
The second is the Fire Pit. Warm colours surrounding it are reminiscent of the Bedouin tribes gathering around a beautiful crackling fire. I mustn’t forget to mention the very pretty suspension installation above.
The bedroom where I stayed, in the ‘Spectacular’ category – many of which are offered at the W Dubai The Palm – was spacious, with beautiful views over the pools, gardens, and the sea.
The entrance was majestic, with its corridor called ‘Runway’, its walls covered in very pretty small glass tiles, reminding me of the colourful mosaics in the entrance of the Resort I described above.
After the runway, we directly enter the bathroom, which is entirely decorated in deep blue hues, echoing the surrounding sea.
One of the corners of my large bedroom was dedicated to relaxation; with a wall adorned with modern graffiti inspired by a song from the Lebanese singer Fairouz: ‘As big as the ocean is how much I love you’. Simply beautiful!
Elsewhere in the W Dubai The Palm, we find a large exterior space called the Wet. The different curvy pools are ringed with vegetation; the references to the surrounding nature and the evolution of Dubai are ever-present.
The sight of the skyscrapers as we walk along the water’s edge is just incredible!
At the end of my stay, I made sure to make the most of a moment of relaxation in the Away Spa of the W Dubai The Palm. Many treatments are offered and they are carried out by a very pleasant and professional team of people.
I must mention the superb suspension above the desk, representing a big drop of water dripping from an oyster shell… So magical!
I had a delightful time at the W Dubai The Palm… This place is a pure design gem ☺
I must highlight the kindness and the professionalism of the whole team, both at the ‘Whatever – Whenever’ desk and the Concierge desk – a special mention for Omar, for his excellent recommendations of restaurants-, in the restaurants, and by the pool.
This Resort is for those who want to experience a design break in a trendy and relaxed atmosphere, in the middle of the vibrant and ever surprising Dubai!