I start to stir and wonder where I am...
What is that light, why is it so bright?
yes, holiday !!!
I slowly and quietly get out of bed and peek through the open curtains. WOW! The sky is bright blue, the sea is blue/green, I can see the rest of the palm and the pool is visible below me. Being 11 floors up has its advantages....
I try to be quiet and take a drink and accidentally wake up mini Doobs. "daddy, do you have to do that" as I take a deep drink from the bottle and the plastic pops as I suck on the small opening at the top. "Sorry mate" I say and proceed to get back in bed after checking the time. 6am...great, that's 3am in the uk....sheesh.
We all start to wake up and we are all starving. I suggest we get up, get dressed and head out for breakfast then start exploring the hotel. The rest of the Doobs family agree and we head down for food.
The hotel has 2 main buffet style restaurants, one under each tower. We are in the West Tower, with an Asian buffet called Saffron beneath us. We head down and walk into the restaurant. We are greeted professionally, and are ushered to our seats. We then all get up and start looking at the food on offer.
All of our our jaws drop. There is standard continental, English fry up, Indian, Asian, Chinese....you name it. This place is massive, with really great food. We quickly grab some food to our liking. I grab a fry up, (I don't often have them, so was a treat for me). Mrs D had some museli, yoghurt and fruit and Mini D had some porridge and some bagels. Mrs D got us some green apple juice, which was simply yummy.
We take our fill, with Mini D and myself have second breakfasts....nom nom nom....
We wonder out and head to the main reception, to ask if there is free wifi in the hotel, to which I am told, no you have to pay sir. It's 95aed per day! That's like £15 a day.... So we are going to hold off and do it every other day or every three days.
We continue to walk through the hotel, passing very few people, and then we see it. The fish tank. But no, it's not like your one at home....imagine a wall of sea. 30plus foot up and 100 foot wide, minimum. It is full, and I mean full, of fish. From Angel fish, to sharks, to marine coloured fish darting in and out. You name it, it's there. There was even a scuba diver cleaning the bottom. It really is something to behold. If you get a chance to stay here, you won't miss the aquarium in the East Wing. Breath taking.
So we continue our walk down to the avenue. The is like a mini rodeo drive! Watches, clothes, jewellery, etc. are here for those of us with extra funds. Although we are not interested today, we are interested in checking out the water park. We wonder through the hotel. It is so large, I haven't been in such a large hotel before. It is like 2 or 3 hotels joined together. The west block, east block and the water parks....
We arrive at the water park. As a hotel member, we are informed that it opens at 9:45 and for us, it's free entry...yay. We take a price list and outside to see the beach and sea outside the front of the hotel. That's when the heat hits us....Bang! It must be 37 or 38 degrees already (pre 9am) and its hot. Not humid, just baking hot.
We walk along the sea and its beautiful. You can see the rest of Dubai in the distance, the heat giving the city a funny haze over the city. We stop and look back at the hotel, which you realise how big it is from down here!
We head along, observing the boats, loungers on the beach and walk up to one of the main pools. Simply lovely, I stop and Mrs D says, this has changed my mind, it's amazing here. Yes it's Ramadan, which you can embrace, but remember you are based in a hotel where everything is available. We are going to go outside of the hotel tomorrow, into the city and will let you know how that goes.
We head back to the room and get changed, agree to pay for a reusable drink bottle, 3 dinners at the water park and a locker. We take enough money and head for the water park and head back out again.
The waterpark is really cool, you get a wrist band which you can add money on to. Then when you want a drink or food, they scan the wrist band and take the money off of it. St the end of your stay, you hand in the wrist band and they give you the remaining cash. Neat huh.
We get changed and Mrs D has the locker, programmed into her wrist band too. She puts our t-shirts, factor 50 suntan cream and our bits and pieces in the locker and we head into the water park. It's empty!!! Brilliant. 10 slides, lazy rivers, loads (and I mean loads) of staff around, life guards every 100 metres or so and a large play park to have fun in!
We grab a couple of rings and head down the lazy river....I won't spoil all the rides for you, but do ALL of the slides. They are great fun, just one word of advice. Keep ya bum up! It will make sense when you go down some slides.....
Anyway, Mrs D gets really hot, even after drinking loads, so she sits down outside the shark tank, and Mini D and I head off up to a double ring ride.
I suggest on the way about doing the leap of faith....he foolishly agrees and we head up and up and up and up stairs until we reach the top of the Coba style pyramid (read our other blogs). It's high and you can see all of Dubai from here.
Mini D and I queue behind a lady, who looks very nervous.....when I say very, I mean it. In front of her is a slide, that disappears in front of her in the next 10feet. She sits down and the life guards tell her what to do. She says she can't.....they keep encouraging her, in a nice way and eventually she pushes slowly over and disappears!!!! Screaming as she went down the leap of faith, it doesn't boade well for mini D and I.
Mini D is not fussed...l he stands there, I tell him the cross his legs and remind him that when he lets go of the bar, the cross his arms over his chest. He does it without abandon and then pushes off. I hear my boy scream as he goes over the edge,...GULP....I check out the monitor and see a picture of him going down and he is safe ! Phew.... Now my turn!!!
I'll be honest, I was poo'ing my pants. I grabbed the bar, crossed the legs and ease'd myself over the edge....holy Sh.......I.......t...aarrrggghhhhhhhh
I see the water and the tunnel and at the end of Mini D.....yaaayyyyyyyyy
I get up and pull the shorts from the crack of my bum and say to Mini D, that was amazing!!! You we so brave (I was a very proud father at that point).... :)
We end up having lunch in the park, and it was fine. We had a chicken Schwarmer..yes, I wondered too....apparently that's what the avengers go for at the end if the first film. It's yummy.... We drink a huge Mountain Dew and then finish the rest of the day in the water park.
We head back to the room and take a shower, we get dressed and head down to Saffron for dinner. We checked the other restaurants, but just wanted a buffet tonight. We wonder down and it was heaving! Note: remember to book the restaurants! The people who had booked, walked straight past...doh!
We grab a seat, after about 20mins and the we go and get a load of various foods. The food is just as good as the breakfast......we eat and eat and eat. I say to Mrs D, that I will be one of those rubber rings in the pool tomorrow! We then laugh and day, that with her and me, we will be a double one! Note, do not come here if you want to lose weight!!!
Mini D locates some sweets in the desert area and we chomp those down. I then suggest to him to take some back to the room. After a major sugar rush, and feeling that we have eaten way too much, we head back to the room.
I am sitting here writing this, whilst the rest of the family are taking some down time, watching national geo on tv. I will upload this, with Day 1 tomorrow.
Then I'll write day 3..... Ramadan and Dubai...a real life experience....