Conveniently centred among Dubai’s popular landmarks including the Burj Khalifa and the famed fountains is The St. Regis Downtown, Dubai. Georgie Bentley-Buckle checked into one of the Deluxe Guest Rooms to see how this new St Regis property celebrates the vibrant city.
Hotel Review: The St. Regis Downtown, Dubai
Throw yourself into Dubai’s urban playground at The St. Regis Downtown, the newest property from the brand that opened in October last year. Sat on the arch of the sweeping canal, and among the city’s towering buildings, the hotel’s 233 guest rooms and 65 suites have excellent views of the surrounding metropolis, allowing the heartbeat of the city to channel through the high-energy hotel.
Views of downtown Dubai come to life once the sun has sunken below the arid horizon and the city sparkles. This is best seen from one of the rooms, each of which feature generous floor to ceiling windows, open bathrooms, walk-in wardrobes and coral inspired wall sculptures. We checked into one of the 60 square metre Deluxe Guest Rooms with a canal view. This large room led from a walk-in wardrobe onto a plush open plan bathroom (sectioned off by sliding doors), and a bedroom with a king bed and a sofa. Finished with rich woods and fabrics, this almost had enough credentials for a suite with the signature St. Regis round-the-clock butler service.
Close to the city’s design hub, the Dubai Design District, The St. Regis Downtown is a retail dream, located just steps from the world’s largest shopping centre. Whilst the nearby Burj Khalifa – which is home to the world’s highest restaurant – dishes up a taste of the ‘tallest’ fine-dining experience at its restaurant Atmosphere.
Back at the hotel, the modest and contemporary pool has a bar with a handful of loungers that line its perimeter and front onto the canal. The St. Regis Spa, meanwhile, has six treatment suites. Book a Flotation Therapy session – which takes place in the hotel’s flotation pod – or the indulgent 24-karat gold age-defying facial, followed by a sensory experience in one of the in-suite infused steam and sauna rooms, or the spa’s traditional Arabian Hammam.
The newest part of the hotel is its Astor Ballroom. A brightly lit event space with natural daylight, this elegant ballroom serves up a slice of the skyscrapers with an outdoor terrace and bar with a lounge and open fireplace. This also makes The St. Regis Downtown, Dubai a fantastic contender for destination weddings and events conveniently located in the centre of the city.
The St. Regis Downtown has two restaurants that guests can choose from throughout the week: the Italian ‘BASTA!’ or French-inspired Bleu Blanc. On canal level and open to the local footfall is where BASTA! can be found and where breakfast is served (the majority of the time). A menu of traditional Italian dishes with a contemporary twist is reflective of its glitzy city setting, combining the feel of an Italian steakhouse with a Neapolitan pizzeria. As the dining hub of the five-star hotel, this bustling restaurant didn’t reflect the five-star feel we expected of the St Regis property; however, a lovely waterfront setting with brilliant dishes (such as thin crispy pizzas and an impressive veal escalope) makes it a popular dinner spot.
Upstairs on the mezzanine floor at Bleu Blanc guests can enjoy a slower-paced, fine-dining experience. Endeavouring to offer ‘authentic’ French flavours in the centre of the Emirati city, recline in a Mediterranean-style setting of delicate whitewashed wood furnishings highlighted by warm, soft lighting. The generous menu stretches across starters, wood-fired, land & sea and grilled meat cuts: notably including Japanese and Australian striploin Wagyu. True to the nature of its concept, classic French favourites feature. Choose from an aged beef steak tartare with smoked aubergine and garlic aioli, crispy duck confit with smoked baby gems and sauce a l’orange, or foie gras with cherries and brioche bread.
A signature of the St Regis brand is its afternoon tea. At The St. Regis Downtown, Dubai this is served in The Library, brewing a locally inspired take on the ritual. For something a little stronger, head to the St. Regis Bar where they’ll pour you a modern take on a Bloody Mary (a nod to the fact it was first created at The St. Regis New York’s King Cole Bar in 1934). Drawing on the heritage of the destination, the bar features a mirrored mural depicting the stars of the Arabian Desert, embellished by starry lights that stretch across its ceiling.
The St. Regis Downtown, Dubai includes 233 rooms and 65 suites overlooking local landmarks such as the Dubai Water Canal and the Burj Khalifa. Book online at marriott.com