Cosmopolitan Dubai has an
ever-increasingt range of bars and pubs to suit all tastes and
place to place, as do ladies' nights. Check out Mumtazz or the
monthly entertainment mags for details.
This smart wine bar is one
of the most popular and a favourite after-work spot, for good
reason. There's an extensive list of Old and New World wines, a
good range of quality wines by the glass, themed tasting
selections (Dh75 for four wines), and a variety of tasty snacks
and 'wine teasers'. Try the chicken liver pSte with apricot
chutney (Dh30), basil-marinated Gorgonzola and Roma tomatoes
(Dh28), marinated Manchega cheese with garlic-cured olives
(Dh28), fried squid and chips with alioli (Dh24) or the cheese
Although it's better known
as a sophisticated fine-dining restaurant, the Apartment
consists of several luxuriously furnished rooms, one of which
resembles a comfortable living room while another is more like a
cellar bar. If you have a dinner booking, go early for the
complementary wine and cheese, otherwise enjoy a quiet glass of
champagne before the beautiful people hit the bar around 1am.
There's no better place to
unwind than the vast veranda of this colonial Arabian-style bar,
complete with comfy sofas, Persian carpets and candlelight.
From the balcony of the Bahri Bar you can sip a chilled glass of
white, eat Arabian tapas, enjoy the balmy breeze and take in
breathtaking views of the harbour and sea. Or you can admire the
best architecture Dubai has to offer with the magnificent Burj
Al Arab in front of you and the magical Mina A'Salam all around
you. The interior of the bar is equally atmospheric.
In one of the most elegant
and tastefully styled hotels in the city, you can enjoy coffee,
cigars and cognac in a dark-wood designer bar.
Every night is ladies'
night in Dubai. It's just a matter of choosing the right bar or
club for cheap or free drinks... Here's a sampler.
▪ Saturday - at Harry Ghatto's (below) the girls get 40% off the bill
▪ Sunday - free cocktails
at Tangerine or two free drinks at Oxygen
▪ Tuesday - a big night in
Dubai - two-for-one cocktails before 10pm at Ginseng , two free
drinks at Zinc between 6pm and 11 pm, or, better yet, free
flowing champagne at Boudoir
▪ Wednesday - women get two free drinks from 8.30pm to 11.30pm
at Long's and two free drinks before lam at Planetarium
▪ Friday - Seville's
offers two free drinks between 6pm and 8pm, free paella at
Spectrum on One, Fairmont,
Sheikh ZayedRd; 7pm-1am
In addition to an array of
dining areas and interactive kitchens, there's a stylish bar at
the back of Spectrum on One, overlooking Sheikh Zayed Rd. With a
long bar, moody wood, a few comfortable seating areas, an
enormous glassed-in wine cellar and an innovative cocktail menu
(try the Bikini Martini), this is a bar for people who take
their drinking seriously.
Emirates Towers, Sheikh Zayed Rd; 6.30pm-lam
This very dusky but
fashionable bar, just off the hotel lobby, has changed its
identity a few times. Adjoining the Rib Room, it's the perfect
place for a pre- or postdinner drink. If the TV inside is too
annoying, take up a position on the voguish white leather seats
out front and enjoy the people-watching.
399 3333; Le Meridien Mina
Seyahi Resort; 6pm-2am
This laid-back outdoor
restaurant and seaside bar is the spot to sip a drink and watch
the sun go down on a balmy afternoon. The big night here is
Friday, when a DJ pulls in a funky young crowd for the Mina Moon
Beach Party. On other nights of the week it's more of a peaceful
place to watch the waves roll in.
BOLLYWOOD CAFE Regal Plaza
Hotel, Bur Dubai; 7pm-3am
The Bollywood Cafe is most definitely
a bars not a cafe, and can be rather sleazy at that. 1 is the
place to go for the bizarre experiefl of seeing a live Bollywood
performance beautiful Indian women miming to the mo hits. You
probably won't want to stay too lor) especially if you're a
single woman, as the la shows can get spicier than the curries.
CARBON LOUNGE Hilton Dubai
A sleek setting, superb
cocktails and slight views of Dubai Creek make this a perfect
spot for a Bellini before dining at Glasshouse or Verre.
Dubai Marine Beach Resort &
Spa, Jumeirah; 7.30pm-3am
Cuban-inspired food is served in this graffiti-walled interior -
inspired by Hav-ana's favourite bar the Bodeguita del Media - El
Malecon is better known for its live Cuban and Latino music,
cocktails and salsa danc-ing. The place hots up around midnight
when you'd think you were at Carnivale. Pens are available so
you can add your autograph to the walls and salsa lessons are
offered some nights.
Wafi City, Bur Dubai; 7pm-2am Fri-Wed, 7pm-3am
Sip the best caiporinhas
(drinks made with trad itional Brazilian sugar cane cachaca) in
town at this funky East-meets-West bar while admir ing the
contemporary orange, red and beige interior and giant wall
mirrors. Spicy Asian tapas are on the menu while DJ
Stickyfingeis. serves up very cool grooves. Saturday's special
is a dozen dim sum and bottle of wine in disounted rates.
Tokyo @ the Towers,
Emirates Towers Shopping Boulevard, Sheikh Zayed Rd; 7.30pm-3 am
At the back of Tokyo @ the
Towers, this intimate karaoke bar is popular with the after work
crowd and gets packed on a Wednesday night after the sake has
ISSIMO COCKTAIL BAR
Hilton Dubai Creek, Deira;
cafe by day, cocktail bar
by night, late Wednes-day night is the best time to go to
Issimo, when it transforms into Jazz Clinic. Sink into the black
leather sofas and unwind to the smooth sounds of jazz and
trip-hop, or sit yourself on a stool and mingle with the mel-how
yet sociable crowd.
Le Meridien Dubai,
Al-Garhoud; 11-3 am
This, American-themed bar
has a resident Filipino band and a menu featuring Cajun, Lex-
Mex and Filipino food. It attracts a mixed crowd, gay and
straight - Filipino expats. Gulf Arabs and businesswomen from
the former Soviet Union - Dubai nightlife in a nutshell.
If this his dark groovy bar
with contemporary Afrocool interiors isn't intimate enough,
there are tiny secluded corners made all the more cosy by velvet
curtains. Get comfy with some cock-tails and your friends, and
the slick music will ensure you stay settled for the night.
Shangri-La, Sheikh Zayed
Rd; 1-3pm, 7.30pnv1am
More of a restaurant than a
bar, but the staff will let you stick to drinks and mezzes and
watch the lively performance by the magnificent three-piece
traditional Moroccan band. In between sets sit back and enjoy
the authentic Moroccan surroundings to the trickle of the
One&Only Royal Mirage,
Chill out for a while on
the cushion-covered banquettes of this exotic The Thousand and
One Nigts-styled bar and you'll be heading to the souq the next
day to recreate this oriental fantasy palace back home. From the
moment you climb the candle-lit stairs, to your first glimpse of
the rooftop decked out with Persian carpets and Moroccan
lanterns, you won't want to leave. Just wait till you get
settled in with a glass of wine to watch the sun set over the
sea. During the hot summer months, the inside bar is equally
Wafi City, Bur Dubai; noon-2am Sat-Wed, noon-3am
This popular Spanish
bar-cum-restaurant has the best sangria and tastiest tapas in
town, During the cooler months you can settle on the outdoor
terrace overlooking an amazing swimming pool and allow the
Spanish guitarists to entertain you.
Dubai Marine Beach Resort &
7.30pm-12.30am Sat-Wed, 7.30pm-2.30am Thu-Fri
The interior of this glossy
sushi bar (with in-house DJ) is way sharp - futuristic white
eather chairs, neon-blue light and fish tanks in the walls.
During the winter months, the bar swells to an outdoor deck
where you can enjoy the balmy beach breezes and music -from 1
Opm to 2am kick back to deep house on Wednesday and Thursday,
tribal and progressive house on Friday.
Burj Al Arab, Jumeirah;
The boldly coloured
ceilings and carpets and over-the-top decor may make your
stomach churn, but the head-turning views of Dubai make it all
worthwhile. Phone ahead to make sure the hotel isn't at full
capacity, then pay Dh200 at the security entrance, which can be
redeemed at any of the outlets inside. Unfortunately for most,
who can only afford to stay for the one quick drink, saying
you've been to the world's first seven-star hotel is what it's
all about. The wines are superb, the complete mentary snacks are
continually replenished and the hors d'oeuvre are rather
delicious, so ask for a window seat and settle in for some time.
UP ON THE TENTH
Intercontinental Dubai; noon-3am Not as sophisticated as we all
once thought when it was one of the few upmarket bars in the
city, but the floor to ceiling windows of this five-star piano
bar still provide superb views of Dubai Creek. There's good
champagne and live jazz some nights.
24th fl, Jumeirah Beach
Hotel, Jumeirah Rd; . 7pm-2am
Sit inside in this elegant
bar or outside the terrace - from either position you'll vour
spectacular views of the turquoise the magnificent Burj Al Arab
and the sublin sandy coast towards the centre of Dubai.
VINTAGE Map Wafi City, Bur
Dubai; 6pm-1.30 am
Wine aficionados nor only
love the awesome wine list, sophisticated atmosphere and wide
range of grape by the glass, the delicious cheese selections
also tempt the tasters in Particularly popular is the Monday and
Friday promotion - cheese fondue for two with a bottle of wine.
51st fl, Emirates Towers,
Sheikh Zayed Rd; 6 pm, am
At 220m above Dubai, Vu's
has amazing vievs over the city. Most of the drinks also have
equally amazing prices, although there are some delicious and
more reasonably priced wines by the glass. The super stylish
decor starry sky and views down Sheikh Zayed Rd will compensate.
Top Ye Old Pubs
The old English-style pubs
in Dubai were the lifeblood of the expat, an informal social
club where one could meet others who shared a love of bad food
and warm beer. Given the expat scene today where no-one talks to
people outside their clique unless they've been sampling a
two-for-one vodka promotion, the pubs are still a good place to
meet for conversation and a few ales.
So, for your drinking and
socialising pleasure, here are some of the better ones. But
don't blame us if you get stuck talking to an oil engineer who's
been in the Gulf on and off since the 70s and is reminiscing
through his beer goggles...
• Aussie Legends Bar (Rydges
Plaza Hotel, Satwa; 3pm-3am Fri-Wed, noon-3am Thu) The pride and
joy of Dubai's first Aussie bar is the telly pumping out footy
• Carters (Pyramids, Wafi
City; noon-2am) This kitsch pub and restaurant is a Dubai
institution. Overlook, or find humour in, the colonial Egyptian
theme, or head to the outdoor terrace instead.
• Dubliners ( behind Le
Meridien Dubai, Al-Garhoud; 11-3am) This smoky, boozy Irish bar
serves pub grub and stays open late.
▪ Irish Village (Aviation
Club, Dubai Tennis Stadium, off Al-Garhoud Rd, Deira; 11-1.15am)
Popular with British expats, this casual watering hole, with its
large outdoor area, is the best of the Irish pubs.
• Long's Bar (Tower
Rotana Hotel, Sheikh Zayed Rd; noon-3am) This American-style pub
is renowned for having the longest bar, live bands and staying
open late. On Friday happy hour lasts all day with drinks.
• Rock Bottom Cafe
(Regent Palace Hotel, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Rd, Bur Dubai;
10-3am) Another Dubai institution, this is the pub/pick-up joint
people end up at when common sense should tell them to go home.
Eat free fish and chips from 3pm to 7pm on Sunday.