Nestled within the glistening golden dunes of the desert on the outskirts of Dubai, the iconic Bab Al Shams Desert Resort opens under the Rare Finds vertical of Kerzner International, welcoming guests from 10 February 2023.
The resort, a cathartic narration of the Middle Eastern culture radiant with life, adventure, and joyful human connection, is the original immersive desert experience in Dubai. Arabic for “Gateway to the Sun,” Bab Al Shams’ architecture and interior design inspired by the earthly tones of the desert throughout the day, illuminated by the sun and the moon. The resort blends seamlessly in the surroundings with 115 lavish rooms and suites housed in 16 two-storey buildings. A modern oasis, the resort is reimagined as a relaxing haven with a subtly Moorish accent.
Presenting guests with one-of-a-kind vibrant experiences, including theatrical dining, holistic wellness treatments and therapies, and nomadic desert adventures, combined with an exceptional hospitality experience, the highly anticipated Bab Al Shams Desert Resort enters a new era.
“The reimagined Bab Al Shams is a legacy project that we are proud and passionate to present,” says Gilles Soheir, General Manager of Bab Al Shams. “The team and I are thrilled to bring forward the essence and stories of this sanctuary to bring an authentic Bedouin experience alight.”
To celebrate the opening, the resort invites guests to experience the ‘Mystique of Arabia’ package, offering a journey of authentic experiences to explore the reimagined resort. A unique selection of adventures awaits; from a guided nature walk among the desert dunes to camel rides and discovering the ancient sports of falconry and archery. With daily Mediterranean breakfast and a complimentary cocktail by the pool, there is no perfect time to indulge in the wonders of this Dubai icon.
ENTERTAINMENT FOR ALL SENSES
Elevating a modern-retro appeal, Bab Al Shams serves one-of-a-kind theatrical and aromatic fine dining experiences. Championing local producers and using responsibly sourced ingredients, every outlet highlights the best of each cuisine, adding to the city’s vibrant culinary scene. Al Hadheerah is an unmatched multi-sensory dining and live entertainment experience rooted in ancient, diverse Arabic heritage. The outlet is a bridge linking the past to the future under the desert stars, complete with a living souk, live-cooked authentic cuisine, dancers, musicians, falconers, and camel riders.
The resort’s signature dining, Zala, meaning ‘canopy’, resembles the architectural details of the resort and transports guests to a contemporary Ottoman and Greek-inspired eatery with theatrical kitchens and a vibrant ambience. The resort is also home to Ya Hala, a hideaway cigar and residents’ speakeasy-style lounge with the charm of an old-world club and Anwā Sunset Lounge, which blends diverse culinary traditions from the far East and South-East Asia. With a panoramic setting of the desert, the lounge calls on guests to look up and take in the stars above as an appreciation for the night sky as a way of navigation.
THE BEDOUIN’S JOURNEY
Captivating destination experiences and vibrant entertainment are at the beating heart of the reborn resort, spreading intangible energy to every stay and imprinting everlasting memories. Narrating the long-held secrets and stories of its people and the Arabian spirit of adventure, Bab Al Shams has carefully curated signature experiences and activities catering to every guest’s preference and needs. Through the resort’s range of thrilling and exciting activities, guests will uncover the fascinating Arabian history hidden underneath the glittering dunes of the Emirati desert.
Follow the nomads of old to discover desert adventures, such as horse-riding, camelback trekking, falconry, off-road desert drives and nature tours to Al Marmoom Desert Conservation Reserve. Adventurous guests can also experience desert fat biking or rent bicycles to traverse the 86 km cycle track at Al Qudra and more. For those looking for a unique perspective, the resort offers a serene sunrise floating experience over the desert with onboard breakfast in a private hot-air balloon.
The resort tends to families with several break-out spaces and activities, beginning with a dedicated experience lounge, Kid’s Club housing a selection of board games, movies, and an outdoor sand adventure playground featuring children’s zip line, offering a multi-generational resort experience. Bab Al Shams will also provide a dreamy setting for weddings, events, celebrations, corporate meetings and incentive retreats, with indoor and outdoor event spaces that can host up to 500 guests.
A HOLISTIC STILLNESS
Focused on holistic well-being, Bab Al Shams is designed to be a tranquil cocoon of self-care. The resort offers the luxury of choosing peaceful stillness or veins of adventure through rich experiences catering to every guest’s need. The Desert Spa features rejuvenating treatments and mindful therapies inspired by diverse world traditions and contemporary techniques, inviting guests to step into a calming mirage.
At the heart of the resort, the much-loved desert infinity pool makes a return, offering guests the opportunity to escape from city life and enjoy hedonistic, calm surroundings from plush sun loungers and private cabanas alongside the swim-up pool bar and family pool.
As part of the Kerzner Rare Finds collection, a series of hospitality addresses bringing forward the essence of a place and promising soulful experiences, the Bab Al Shams resort preserves its legacy as the longest-running desert escape in the UAE.