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“Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa”

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Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa
Ranked #47 of 545 Hotels in Dubai
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
1 review
“Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa”
Reviewed June 25, 2013

It is very rare that I come onto Trip Advisor however, the four days my family and I spent at Bab Al Shams was simply one of the most extraordinary experiences and provided us with the sort of service that you would expect at The Burj Al Arab, the so called “7 star hotel” !!

I am fortunate that I travel to the USA as part of my job in the Insurance industry, so I am used to a certain high level of service from established hotels but quite honestly, I cannot recall ever getting the sort of customer care that we got from Mohab Aly, the Front Office manager and Osman the manager in one of the many outstanding restaurants within the hotel. The care shown to my children was fanastic (all the lifeguards went out of their way to get to know Ollie my 7 year old), the bedrooms were beautifully decorated, spotlessly clean, very cool given the temperature outside; the food was nicely varied and very tasty, the swimming pools were amazing and if the intention of the hotel was to transport us to some sort of Arabian wonderland, then they achieved 100% success.

When we arrived after a long flight and there was a small problem with our rooms, where someone hadn’t checked out after a big convention, so I was both appreciative and astonished at the speed and efficiency in which Mohab handled the problem and got everything sorted out, even to the point of actually personally escorting us to the rooms himself. Things
like that are not forgetten. This attitude and level of service has made my wife and I tell EVERYONE we know about Bab Al Shams and we are already looking at returning to your hotel next May and I am sure that others will be exquiring as well.

The hotel simply made our first trip to Dubai, the most incredible and memorable holiday ever and we can’t wait to return next year.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Thank Jonny H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed June 25, 2013

During the recent bank holiday weekend in May'13, I was surprised by my partner with a one night stay in Bab Al Shams Resort.
It is a nice easy drive from Abu Dhabi and on arrival at the resort the check in was swift and welcome drinks were provided. We were escorted to our rooms which were lovely, the shower/bath was especially large. We were on the ground floor and I have two small criticisms of this: 1) There was no view apart from a white wall in the terrace area (although it was large enough for a small table and chairs) 2) As the rooms are on the ground floor and hence are the main walkways for staff, the peacefulness of the room was often disrupted by the noisy rumble of the housekeeping carts or room service carts going backwards and forth!
The pool area itself is lovely, although the pool could do with a good scrub as lots of black pieces of muck have started to grow on the marble walls of the pool and this flakes off into the pool and does not look very nice!
I would highly recommend the Arabic restaurant which is a golf cart ride away from the main hotel. It is set up like an Arabic Market, where you can go to different 'vendors' and try different food. It is quite expensive (same as a brunch 500AED pp) however they provide a show at the same time, from belly dancing to falcon show. So its definitely worth it.
Comparatively to a resort such as Qasr Al Sarab which is also a desert resort, I would say that Bab Al Shams is not quite as good as Qasr, (the desert views and general standard is just better in Qasr). Nethertheless Bab Al Shams is still an excellent retreat away from the city and a welcome relaxing break.

Room Tip: If you can afford it go for a Upstairs terrace room as they have the views of the desert, many of th...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Charlie1000_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kolkata (Calcutta), India
Level Contributor
42 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed June 24, 2013

Had a short stay in Bab Al Sham Resort in April. The resort is far away from locality, makes you enjoy the reality of being in mid dessert. The food is awesome. Wide breakfast spread. The chef cooking the omelettes (sorry I forgot his name, but I think he is from Nepal) and the hostess from Mumbai was spot on. Liked the crispness in the service style. Thanks to Mirna - (the front office manager). She was very helpful. Loved the pool, huge & nice. My wife surely had her first freehand swim in there. Overall a beautiful experience . Oh yes, how can I forget the fantastic sheesha and the Oud music in the roof top bar, tremendously good. Surely would recommend to any one. Thanks...

Room Tip: Pool view rooms are nice.
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank sazybanjo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed June 23, 2013

Living in Dubai, we often need to get away and recharge our batteries. Bab Al Shams is our favourite getaway resort. We have just had another great weekend there. The staff here are fantastic, from the pool attendants, to the waiters, shisha guy, they all remember not just who we are, but what we like (took us to our favourite loungers without even asking, brought our sparkling water, remembered our shisha preference). I don't know how they do it!

Check in is efficient, we were offered some cold lemon mint drinks and a cold towel. We were early so that we could take advantage of the whole day, and luckily our room was ready. We also had a late check out till 4pm.

The pool is fantastic, especially the water jets. A small point - it needs a bit of extra cleaning on the sides. The small pool was closed this weekend for renovations, but it was all covered up and not a problem.

Al Forsan restaurant, range of food very good and high quality. Its a shame that the Indian restaurant is closed although you can get the Indian menu in Al Forsan. The lamb speciality is fantastic. Breakfast again a good range of items, love the honey dripping from the honeycomb!

The Rooftop bar is our favourite for after dinner drinks and shisha. There is a musician/singer who adds perfectly to the Arabian nights feel.

We have also gone to Al Hadeerah in the past for the Arabic experience. Definitely recommend it if you have visitors or are a first time guest.

The rooms are great, we had a deluxe room on the ground floor which had a small outdoor terrace. We have also had the superior rooms on top floor, they are the same, just no outdoor area. Finally, they have replaced the old, big TV's with flat panels! There is a USB port in the room but no Wi-Fi. There is free Wi-Fi by the pool, restaurant and reception.

Meydan Hotels now run the hotel, taking over from Jumeirah. If anything the resort is better than ever. Cant wait till our next visit!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Desertdaisie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Level Contributor
15 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed June 22, 2013

Bab Al Shams is an outstanding place to stay. We booked for my wife's birthday. The staff was amazing and helped to make this a perfect stay. We will definitely be staying again. I can’t find any faults with this place. Thank you.

Room Tip: The upgrades are cheap to do and worth every penny. :)
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank fR1tz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UAE
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed June 22, 2013

Based on our experience in BAS three years ago we decided to choose this hotel to celebrate two unique for us occasions .Our 5th wedding anniversary and my husband’s birthday with our 11month old daughter. Also we encouraged another couple with the two kids to come and stay at the same hotel and celebrate his birthday too at BAS since we had a very good experience three years ago.
I personally have contacted the hotel reservations 6 weeks in advance to ensure that they knew the occasions and that we would have two king size bed rooms next to each other with our friends so we can hang around in the evening after the kids sleep in the evening to celebrate the occasions. I sent several emails back and forth as well as speaking to the phone with the reservations and everything was confirmed as well as early check in and late check out and free room upgrade subject to availability.
Only to find out in the reception that none of our requests were taken into consideration ,no provision was made for the rooms to be next to each other and they couldn’t even guarantee us that they would do it for us . Early check in as requested and confirmed by mail was out of the question so we had to hang around in the reception from 11-13.30pm with our 11month old daughter trying to entertain her,feed her put her to sleep at the lobby area.. The behavior and the response of the Duty Manager was totally rude and unacceptable ,treating us and talking to us very arrogantly ,saying they cant give us anything that we confirmed because the hotel was fully booked!!! (of course once checked in we could see that there was plenty of rooms vacant next to us only ,even online was giving plenty of rooms available for the same nights)
When we finally got the room key close to 14.00pm we find out that we have to go three narrow flights of stairs up with the buggy and baby  and!!! That the 5star resort room that they allocated to us after all these requests had NO BALCONY!!!! By this stage our happy mood and intention of enjoying out celebratory weekend was totally ruined ,I was ready to come back to Abu Dhabi and just forget about this place. But we decided to give them another chance.
So I go and find the same arrogant ,rude and totally unhelpful Duty manager to ask to change rooms because this is not what we expected and was described in their website. Finally after waiting another 45min he did us the favor to put us to a room with a terrace overlooking the beautiful car park of the hotel and with a terrace full of bird poo that you couldn’t even sit outside at a nice upgrade price (with a view of the car park!!!) of 170dh on the top of the total package (even it was saying on our offer that free upgrade is included). Our friends got a room three rooms down and he decided (what a good manager!!) to give us the one room with no charge, although the description of the room on their websites are all with balcony or terrace.

On the top of that the family pool and pool bar were under construction and no one mentioned anything on the time of the booking. The indian restaurant was closed too. The hotel rooms looked very worn out. The baby cot that we got in the room looked that it was from the 70s. The bumper pillows the same. No complimentary cool water around the pool.

On the checkout I called them up saying we will checkout at 13.30pm .The operator said that we cant and that we should have checked out at 12pm but she can give us until 13pm.I explained that it was almost one pm and thatteh baby is asleep so when she wakes up we will go .She said that she has to talk to the manager cause our room had been reserved and we had to empty the room.

The housekeeping staff and other staff around the hotel were very nice and helpful .I feel sorry for them with the management that they have. Totally worst experience for us. We are so sorry we chose this hotel for our anniversary while there are soo many nice hotels around the area where we had great experiences such as Park Hayatt and St Regis Saadiyat beach. Also the dream dessert resort Qasr Al Sarab and Al maha dessert resort.

Please don’t choose this hotel again and save yourselves the disappointment. I think since the management changed from Jumeirah to Maydan the hotel has gone down a lot.

PS .We did get a piece of cake with Happy anniversary written on it with one set of cutlery 

Room Tip: Dont choose ths hotel .Much better options around that will make you feel special and not like they...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Safari21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peyia, Cyprus
Level Contributor
134 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed June 22, 2013

We stayed at Bab al Shams during the week. I enjoyed it so much that i wished i could have stayed longer. The check in was done well and we checked in a hour early without any problems. A welcome drink and cold towel would have been nice - we were not offered any.

The room was nice - liked the arabian style decor and the block out curtains ensured a sleep in. Amenities are good quality - Bloom dead sea products. The bathroom is amazing. Fresh fruit was available in the room.

Lying at the swimming pool guests are treated with cold towels, ice lollies and fruit kebabs - nice touch. Overnight the one swimming pool was drained for maintenance. We had fish and chips from the pool restaurant and the fish was nice but too oily. Cocktails were nice and cold.

We had dinner at the rooftop - Al Sarab - restaurant and enjoyed the entertainment and the food. Finger food very well prepared. Breakfast was at Al Forsan with a very good variety of dishes to choose from. We also had some chicken briyani at Al Forsan As the Indian restaurant was closed for the summer. It was well prepared and tasty.

Staff were friendly and we enjoyed the camel ride as well as the falcon show.

I would definitely come back and hopefully for a longer stay.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Boetie1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa

Property: Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa
Address: International Endurance City, 308th Rd, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Phone Number:
Location: United Arab Emirates > Emirate of Dubai > Dubai
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Top resorts Hotel in Dubai
#35 Spa Hotel in Dubai
#40 Business Hotel in Dubai
#43 Luxury Hotel in Dubai
#47 Family Hotel in Dubai
#53 Romantic Hotel in Dubai
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 113
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Translated from Arabic as "Gateway to the sun", the *award-winning 5-star Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa is designed to resemble a fortified rural Arab village amidst the desert landscape. Featuring low-rise architecture, this sandy coloured style fort boasts the main tower with Reception area and lobby and clusters of two-storey buildings housing guest accommodation, restaurants, spa and meeting facilities interconnected by seemingly endless little walkways. The charm of Arabia is personified in every corner of the property with small lanes running through the hotel, scattered around ponds and secluded seating areas, shaded courtyards, water fountains and trickling streams bestowing the feel of cool tranquillity. The abundance of green garden areas and manicured lawns adds to the quiet and soothing environment of the resort. The rustic Arabian theme of exterior design continues to flow in the carefully selected interior decorations and settings featuring uncovered natural stone floors, bare plastered walls, dark wood and iron fixtures, warm dimmed lighting and an abundance of artefacts showcased throughout the property. The resort boasts 113 rooms and suites offering cosy accommodation in an authentic Arabian style with majority of the rooms having a private terrace. All guest rooms and public areas have complimentary Wi-Fi access. *World's Leading Desert Resort, World Travel Awards. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bab Al Shams Desert Hotel Dubai
Bab Al Shams Desert Resort And Spa

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