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“Absolutely Amazing Resort for Families with Young Children”
Review of Atlantis, The Palm

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Atlantis, The Palm
Ranked #106 of 550 Hotels in Dubai
Certificate of Excellence
Paris, France
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
“Absolutely Amazing Resort for Families with Young Children”
Reviewed February 27, 2010

I really do not understand the negative reviews. My kids have traveled all over the world and called the Atlantis "the best hotel ever." I have two children aged 7 and 4 and they are telling us they want us to book next year already. Yes, the prices are high, but this should not be surprise anyone. We booked the half-board through Virgin Holidays (flying from Paris to London first as the package was at an unbeatable price). I also have seen that some reviewers have said that the hotel is "over-the-top." Dubai is over-the-top as it is all new so I do not understand the criticism -- it iis what you expect when you come to Dubai. Bottom-line, we will be back next year to the Atlantis.

I am going to let my 7 year old write the following paragraph and then I will jump back in -- here we go. The Atlantis Hotel is set up for kids. Every person there is nice to kids. For example, we had a great tour guide at the acquarium who answered all of our questions and told us a lot about fish. My brother and I loved the water park so much that we went 4 or 5 days and want to come back again next year. The food is great, it tastes like the food from other countries as they have many different foods to eat. At the Lebanese restaurant, the food was great and they even had a belly-dancer which I really enjoyed. All the employees say hello to kids and greet you when come out or in the hotel door. The dolphin bay when we swam with dolphins was one of my favorite things and we sawm with Alice. Finally, we went to the kids club for one night when my parents went to Nobu. I loved the kids club so much because they had everything that you would ever wnat to do at a kids club like an art room, a computer room, etc. This is the best kids club I have ever went to. My brother and I want to visit next year!

Back to the adult assessment. We checked-in at 9:30am and were quickly given our room as requested with 2 queen beds and non-smoking. Yes, the hotel is a tourist attraction so the lobby is busy along with the acquarium and the avenues. The hotel is the cleanest I have ever stayed at and they keep it up well. They even had painters walking around the hotel touching up scratches and smudges on the walls. We went to the pools and the water park every day. It was not too crowded and the entire family enjoyed them (the water park was free for hotel guests). They had things to do at the water park for all ages and the whole family really loved this. The service was great as we do not put our towels on our chairs all week as the attendants did this for us. The restaurants were great. We ate at Nobu, the lebanese, the italian, two buffet eateries, and sharkbites. They were excellent, particularly Nobu and the lebanese place. The only negative was that on Fridays and Saturdays (weekend in Dubai), they were busy and service was not as flawless as it was on the other 5 days of the week (it was still very good though). We were on half-board (which gave us free at the buffets or 405 dhm credit for any restaurant for dinner). I I lived in Dubai, I would go to the restaurants here as they were excellent.

We went to the acquarium about every day and guides like Roshan were very knowledgeable. My kids liked the "fish feedings" and asking questions. It is truly amazing to walk by the acquarium every day as we did. We splurged for the dolphin bay and it was worth it, the kids told us this was their favorite thing.

If you are a family wiht children, I cannot reccomend the Atlantis Dubai highly enough. It was an amazing resort that had something for everyone from the shops and Nobu for the adults to the waterpark and kids club for the children. They service was outstanding and the staff treated my children fantastically.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
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3 Thank parisoh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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yorkshire
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2010

Just got back from spending a week at the Atlantis and what can I say other than WOW!!! What an amazing holiday. I always said I would never go back to the same place twice as there are too many places in the world to see but I am definately going back to the Atlantis... The hotel is very grand and the staff cannot do enough for you. They love kids and always make a fuss of the little ones. We didnt open a door, press a lift button or put a towel on a sunbed the whole week we were there, they really look after their guests. I travelled with my teenage daughter and toddler and there was plenty to do...Club Rush a definate for the teenagers and a great place to meet new friends ( adults not allowed!!!) and complimentary internet, Plenty to do for the little ones too. Free access to Aquaventure for guests and the kids loved it, also free access to the lost chambers. Plenty of shops on the avenues and an ice cream bar!!!! The hotel has 16 restaurants altogether and we were still finding them into day 5...food was absolutely brilliant whichever restaurant you choose to go to. I read a few reviews before I went about how expensive it was to eat and drink but come on...its a 5 star luxury hotel you are not going to eat out at 3 star prices are you be realistic!!!! If you do want something cheaper they always have Subway, KFC, Pizza Hut etc in the Malls. Also went swimming with the dolphins whilst we were there which is a must, what an experience and my 2 year old loved it in fact I was more apprehensive than him! Definately worth the money. The rooms are lovely and the beds are really comfortable you have a bath and seperate shower, flat screen tv and you have tea and coffee making facilities with complimentary water in your room every day. Someone comes round every evening and tops your tea, milk and coffee up. I could go on and on but you are just going to have to see for yourself you will not be dissappointed we cant wait to go back.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
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Helpful?
6 Thank topcat21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belfast, ireland
Level 5 Contributor
92 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 162 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2010

I agree with other reviewers who describe the Atlantic in glowing terms...but at a cost!

We stayed for five nights and enjoyed a wonderful trip. Our one bedroom suite was superbly presented and serviced throughout our stay, and we have nothing but praise for the excellent staff throughout the hotel, especially the many Sri Lankans who work around the pool and pool restaurant areas. They can't do enough to be of service. Both concierge and reception staff are also very friendly and efficient.

The Aquaventure Park is clean, well run and really good fun for kids and adults alike and we also recommend splashing out on the Dolphin Experience....by far the best of three we've tried (the other two were at Atlantis Bahamas and on Tortola).

The hotel's top line restaurants (we tried Seafire, Nobu & Ronda Locatelli) are all very good, but by no means cheap. In retrospect, it might have been worth shopping around for restaurants in other Dubai hotels.

Wine and drinks are particularly expensive, especially in the restaurants, as is the room minibar. Take the advice of others and grab a few bottles of your choice in the duty free shop just after passport control when you fly in....a major saving.

That aside, this is a superb hotel....it still feels new, it is extremely well managed, surprisingly friendly and with some of the best staff we've ever come across.

Just make sure your credit card is well charged up.....!

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank businesseye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level 4 Contributor
19 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed February 26, 2010

We travelled as two single mums and three teenage boys. It was a 'treat' holiday for UK half term week break. We booked independently, flying out with BA (£600 pp round trip, booked just after Xmas) and staying via Virgin (because the cheaper Deluxe rooms were no longer available by indy booking)(the cost for accommodation via Virgin ended up being the same as it would have been had we booked independently the next grade of room up - with Virgin we got breakfast 'thrown in' as well! - at £30 a head!!!! ). Accommodation costs per room for two occupants was £3000 for seven nights (eek!).

We arrived at midnight, and were slightly worried about transfers, but the Atlantis hotel desk at the airport recommended a normal city taxi. They are easy to find, and seem well organised re pick up just outside the hotel. The taxis are very good, and it was a relief. They are City Corporation taxis, with a meter, and v. clean and reliable. For five people we needed two taxis because of our luggage (we ended up taking far too much!). The fare to the hotel came to around 80 AED and we tipped 20 AED so the total was about £20 (we were getting just over five AED to the pound in exchange). Journey took about half an hour.

The Atlantis reception was open - I believe it's open 24 hours - and we checked in pretty painlessly. They did us communicating rooms which was great. The good thing about the Deluxe (cheapest) rooms is that they are on the lower floors - the next grade up is exactly teh same room quality, but higher up. We preferred lower floors becuase of fire risk etc etc. On the second floor, we ended up with huge balconies overlooking the Gulf and the entrance to the hotel (which is round the back of the Palm)(the beach is inward facing across the Palm lagoon).

Rooms were very comfortable. Hilariously (to the teenagers!) the bathroom has extra doors, that look like a wardrobe, that can be opened from the bedroom to reveal the person having a bath. My, what a laugh that would be....ha ha not..(we stuck to showers....) (seems a pretty daft feature, I have to say - maybe it lets you watch the telly from the bath?) The bathroom has a nice walk in shower and a separate lockable loo with bidet, which is good for privacy (given the feature above!).

Beds were fine - queen size. Lots of pillows. Duvet a bit draggy.

We found the air con a bit low - as in, not very strong, even on max. Probably because for Dubai it's winter and already cold outside!

Daytime air temp was idyllic at around 30 with a light breeze.

The hotel is famed for its bling, and I was initially critical, but it does seem to work out there. It's huge and vast and glittering and shiny, and people take photos of the atrium etc etc. The vastness is good because lots of space and facilities, but you get exercise just walking from one end to the otehr!

The gardens to the front, by the beach, are beautiful. Two large pools, and loads of loungers, each with an adjustable shade which works very well. Beach is very accessible. Coral sand is rough (softer sand out in the desert - import it?!). Water chilly. Probably not that clean, but seemed Ok for a quick dip. We stuck to the pools mostly.

The water park is fantastic. Guests get free access ,and our teen boys ran back and forth merrily all day, while we lounged by the pool. Strangely, we did not want to do the Leap of Faith, though our boys did it countless times!!! The lazy river was more our style. The loungers in the water park were also good, but a little more crowded. Go to the far end, by the dolphin house, and there is more space and more peace and quite. As usual, the surrounding piped musak added only irritation. Why hotels think people want to listen to their rubbish music I don't know. If I want music I'll take my own! But that was the only real irritation. The landscaping in the waterpark is beautiful, almost as good as at the hotel. Lots of easy beach access too, and loads of loungers there. Good VFM for a day trip from another hotel.

As expected, food at the Atlantis is not cheap. We avoided the most expensive restaurants, and did our best to fill up at breakfast. Breakfast is fantastic – two restaurant choices, Kaleidoscope and Saffron. The former in the waterpark end, the latter at the further end (long walk between!). Both are very noisy, especially Saffron, and outside is nicer, as it is poolside. Breakfast is a vast buffet of just about anything you could think of – pork products, sausages and bacon – are available slightly separated from everything else. Saffron specialises in Asian food – dim sum etc – but also has a lot of western food as well. It also has – wait for it! – a chocolate fountain! Don’t know why Kaleidoscope doesn’t, as once the children discover a chocolate fountain they won’t eat anywhere else!

There are two restaurants poolside, at either end of the main pool. They are outdoors, both sheltered by an open roof, and out in the sun/moonshine. One is Mexican, the other Italian in theme. Pizzas (about £12) are OK but nothing wonderful. Food is pricey. To be honest, I recommend the kiddy-menu! It was half the price of the adult one, and very good VFM. Do NOT have the Caesar Salad – I paid £12 for a plate of lettuce, half a boiled egg, one anchovy and some invisible bits of turkey bacon and parmesan. Utter rip off. Dreadful. Good puds for £8.

The Mexican one does a happy hour till 8, when cocktails (alas, not mocktails) are half price so about a fiver each, great for that location.

We also ate at the internal Italian restaurant in the inner mall, which was a lot more expensive.

Very belatedly, we found a fabulous ice-cream parlour, Coldstone, at the far end of a mall, where they have a lot of icecream choices for not a great deal more than it would be in London (about four pounds I think it was.) Recommended.

Coffee by the pool was about a fiver, I think – they bring it to you. V. nice!

The rooms also have a kettle, tea and coffee (not much milk, but the cappochino coffee sachet includes the froth!), and free water and fruit. Don’t touch the minibar! If you take something out, it charges automatically! We took a bottle of wine from duty free to the hotel, and kept it in the fridge for a nightcap.

Bathrobe in the bathroom was cotton, and very small! I’m not that fat, and my son is not that tall, but it was tiny for both of us! They don’t encourage you to reuse towels, which they should, and kept replacing towels used only once. Water is fine to drink.

Overall, it was a memorable holiday. The waterpark makes the hotel, and if your children are old enough to be let loose unsupervised, that makes for a wonderfully relaxing adult holiday! The hotel pool stayed open till eight – well dark! – which is also good. Waterpark closes round about 6 – dusk. Hotel guests don’t get any special priveleges there, other than not having to hire towels, which is good.

Because of the vast size of the hotel, there are buggies driven along the front path from one end to the other, and along the side of the waterpark to the dolphins, which is good for tired feet! Watch out – they are full up from the dolphin onwards at the end of the day, so you are better off walking back to the hotel!

The paths would be ideal for Segways, but the hotel won’t have them there apparently, so they are only at the Jumeirah beach hotel.

Football on the beach at 5 each afternoon was very popular. There are some pedalos and kayaks for hire, but far more could be made of the water frontage on the Palm lagoon. The wind picked up quite nicely during the day, and by late afternoon you could have got a not bad dinghy sail or windsurf (non-planing probably unless you had a large sail!). The hotel could do more in that respect. There isn’t any info about day trips, things to do outside the hotel, other than desert trips – again, hotel could do more. There are tennis courts and a basket ball hoop, and pingpong tables for hotel guests.

We checked out the gym which is free and beautiful, and fine for teens to use

Teens enjoyed the teen club in the evening (one free entrance then it’s something like £11 pp per night – the big draw seems to be the Xboxes etc (withdrawal symptoms!). No adults allowed in. No alcohol is served.

Photos from the water park cost £17! Nice quality though.

When you check in, they put 3,000 AED on your cc, the balance of which is then refunded after you’ve paid for what you’ve put down on the room.

I didn’t do the aquarium, though it was included in the hotel price like the aquapark, but apparently it’s huge, but with insufficient information about the fish. You can see one wall from the outside without going in – very impressive, though I don’t like to see animals in captivity, even fish.

Overall, if you want to be in Dubai, but away from the City, the Atlantis is beautiful. Compared with the hotels on the shore - eg, Jumaeriah Beach - it is much more spacious and much more 'away' from the City. Being on the Palm makes journeying into the city longer, but it was about 20 minutes to the Jumeirah Beach hotel, 20 minutes to the malls. The hotel has free shuttles, but we kept missing them. I would say the Atlantis is better 'wow factor' than Jumeirah beach hotel (where we went for the Segways) and the latter seemed very small and cramped in comparison.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Marion055
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
coxhoe
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed February 24, 2010

We have just returned from the atlantis palm where we stayed for two days following a seven day royal caribbean cruise (which was also fab...) the hotel is wonderful very grand and very large, the rooms are lovely very clean and well equiped . We were lucky as we had booked a half board package but at £30 per person for breakfast and more for dinner depending on were you eat it worked out a great deal. The food was very good and on that package you can still use 6 of the restaurants so you arn't limited too much, there was plenty of choice for us. If you like a tipple at £25 for the cheapest bottle of wine and £9 for a g and t its not cheap, but you'd expect that anyway. The water park is really great fun and free to guests, beware of the Leap of Faith not for the faint hearted. We did the shallow water dolphin interaction which is discounted for guests and well worth the money. The hotel is a little bit away from the action however there are shuttle buses to the local malls and the taxis are readily available and not too expensive to travel around they should be metered dont use it if it isn't. If you like a tipple or two it can be expensive around £9 for a gin and tonic but still worth a visit. All in all a great holiday, heres to the next time.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank coxhoemax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed February 24, 2010

Hubby and I took off to the Atlantis for a four night break from the little ones. Emirates filghts excellent, flew economy and were impressed by food, leg room, service and entertainment. Hotel was spectacular. Stayed in a standard room on 6th floor. Have stayed in five star hotels all over world in suites etc from Sydney to Barbados and cannot understand the negative reviews on the rooms at all. Takes all sorts I guess. Hotel staff very helpful, Nasimi beach bar great fun, the Lebanese restaurant and bar are a MUST. And the aquarium, well, that really is a wonder. And it's beamed into the rooms via a webcam. Beach is not bounty bar, but what can we expect from reclaimed land? I would recommend the hotel and will probs go back. But not in the height of summer. I prefer the temp just as it was in Feb - mid 20s is good for me.

Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank BeffaB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doncaster
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 24, 2010

I have just returned from a week at The Atlantis with my husband and 3 children (ages 8, 5 and 3) and we can not wait to return. This hotel is a must if you have children although there is plently to do as couples. I had read a lot of reviews on here and must admit was put off but my daughter had been desparate to stay here.
The moment I walked into the impressive lobby I was worried - the lobby areas are so busy not what I expecyted from a 5 star hotel but you have to remember the hotel itself is a tourist attraction. We were taken to the Imperial Club lounge quickly and were very impressed. We arrived at 10 am and knew our rooms would not be ready but that didn't matter. we had a peaceful breakfast -admired the views and got ready for the water park!

During our stay we ate at Nobu, Rostang, Seafire, Locatelli, The Shore, The Edge and Nasimi Beach. Couldn't fault any of them. They are all expensive especially the wine but this is Dubai. Before we went we did the half board option and this is so worth it -especially with my children!

Staying at the hotel you get free access to the water park and this in itself is worth it. In the park you can charge everything to your room so you don't have to worry about having cash with you.
We had a baby sitter who was brilliant and would recommend.Imperial Club rooms are well worth it too.
All in all brilliant plus the fact the weather was fantastic.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank 0114sarah1974
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Atlantis, The Palm

Property: Atlantis, The Palm
Address: Crescent Road | The Palm, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Phone Number:
Location: United Arab Emirates > Emirate of Dubai > Dubai
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#22 Business Hotel in Dubai
#31 On the Beach Hotel in Dubai
#42 Romantic Hotel in Dubai
#43 Family Hotel in Dubai
#65 Spa Hotel in Dubai
#96 Luxury Hotel in Dubai
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Atlantis, The Palm 5*
Number of rooms: 1539
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Atlantis is the majestic resort in Dubai situated on The Palm, a man-made island that has captured the world’s imagination with its magnificent scale and ingenuity. From the moment you arrive, you will be immersed in a dazzling world of imagination, pleasure and 5 star luxury. The resort offers relaxation and thrills for couples and families alike, including a landmark hotel, unique marine habitats, an exhilarating water park, pristine white beaches, world-class cuisine, indulgent spa and cosmopolitan boutiques. To stay or visit is to live out your dreams amidst warm Arabian seas. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Atlantis The Palm Dubai
Atlantis The Palm Hotel Dubai

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