Was Dubai (Jumeirah Beach Hotel) Your Best Ever Family Holiday?

(56 Posts)
ChickenSpring Mon 25-Mar-13 20:59:57

Looking to book a holiday at Jumeirah Beach hotel for a special birthday. Was really excited, until the prices started going up and up... So frustrated that we could have got the same holiday for £3-400 less just a couple of weeks ago. Now faced with either researching other holidays, or just booking at the higher price. Very keen to hear from anyone who has been with young children (ours are 5 and 2). We would be booking the dine around half board package which I understand is valid at all the Jumeirah hotels. Would we really enjoy fine dining with young children though? Oh and very nervous about drink costs too.

Mondrian Tue 02-Apr-13 07:44:26

If you are getting it for 300/night then you get 300/night crowd not 600/night crowd.
We liked JBH but that was some 10-15 years ago, we stopped going there around yr 2001 as it started heading downhill. Last time we went to Dubai was in 2006 with our toddler and stayed at Medinat hotel which was far better that JBH with more things to do and better selection of cuisine (same group). We always bought drinks at duty free and stored in room bar, that way we only topped up when we went out. I agree that now a days its just an expensive concrete resort and will get far better value if you change location.

SizzleSazz Tue 02-Apr-13 07:57:48

I hated Dubai when I went. One big building site with Indian workers shuffling round in blue sackcloths. Although obviously you can't see them from inside the luxury resorts, so that's ok then hmm

Personally I would head for Turkey or Morrocco for heat and not too long a flight.

ChickenSpring Tue 02-Apr-13 09:19:31

Well I've been to Vegas and I hated it! Not my think at all. Although that was more about the gambling and prostitution. We stayed in a nice hotel on the strip and I did enjoy our suite, which is perhaps why Dubai appeals due to the luxury accommodation.

I will have a look at Mauritius today as an alternative as I've still been unable to book the Dubai holiday at a price we are willing to pay, so thank you for the recommendations!

Givemeaclue, yes I am concerned about that. We probably wouldn't hang out there all day, but I am hoping that we could spend an hour or so there, maybe late afternoon when the sun is less intense. We would obviously do all we can to keep safe in the sun. Although you've got me thinking now that maybe the sand will be too hot for them to walk/play on? Hadn't considered that.

givemeaclue Tue 02-Apr-13 09:25:24

If the kids are inside in the air con all day its not much of a holiday is it

givemeaclue Tue 02-Apr-13 09:33:00

Turkey good idea, some luxury hotels there

Or have you thought about Abu Dhabi? The city is a bit more family friendly.

[[http://www.shangri-la.com/abudhabi/shangrila/ The Shangri-la is nice]

Though I suspect the Emirates Palace May be out of your price range.

Mutley77 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:38:15

Haven't been to Dubai so perhaps I'm not going to be overly helpful but have a couple of close friends who regularly go (and love it!).

However from what you are saying I'm not quite sure what it is about Dubai that is attracting you. You can get luxury accommodation and good food in many places - June is a great time of year in terms of options as Europe is wide open to you in view of the weather. Dubai will be v v hot in June and therefore you may not get the benefits of a holiday that you would enjoy elsewhere (ie kids and you being outside around pool / at beach) without worrying about getting too hot or sunburned the whole time you are there. Having just emigrated to Australia the heat is fast losing its appeal to me - haven't had any trouble with sun safety it is just not overly pleasant to be out in high 30s all day!

Have you looked at somewhere like Martinhal in Portugal - ok I'm sure the height of luxury isn't at quite the same level as Dubai but the food was lovely (on and off the resort), the accommodation was beautiful - and the self-catering townhouses gave extra flexibility over a hotel room. The childcare was also excellent.

I personally would reconsider your options.

Mutley77 Wed 03-Apr-13 14:42:51

PS - when I say childcare I mean both the kids club, which my children asked to go to after meeting other kids who were going (they only went 2 hours per day but it was soooooooooo relaxing for DH and I having a break from watching our then 2 year old in the pool for 2 hours), and a lovely girl from the kids club then babysat in the evening while we went to the restaurant which wasn't child suitable / friendly a couple of evenings. The other restaurants were well geared up for kids and there was children's entertainment within our view so that they could enjoy themselves while we ate more leisurely.

Cosmostocupcakes Wed 03-Apr-13 20:55:39

Well I love it - then I would as I have lived there for 10 years - when are you planning on going? Its great for family holidays, lots to do - buy the entertainer book for discount vouchers - drinks are not cheap but similar to other hotels around the world - most evening buffets include drinks.

Children are adored here!

But some will love it and some will hate it!

Doesn't every country have human rights issues? shock

So much hate..... sad or just envy

Cosmostocupcakes Wed 03-Apr-13 21:10:10

There are nicer hotels the JBH though!

I see you want to come in June - it will be warm but so will Turkey etc...

Morgan Wed 03-Apr-13 21:15:32

I too lived in Dubai and would say that it will be hot in June - hot sand and surfaces around the pool . Nice when in the water but hot and sweaty otherwise .

I loved Dar al Masyaf though - good choice ! Nicer than JBH but still access to Wild Wadi etc and all the restaurants .

Can also second Oman if you fancy that .

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 03-Apr-13 22:28:33

Chicken there are direct flights to Oman both with BA and Oman air.

ChickenSpring Thu 04-Apr-13 14:09:20

Thank you everyone. We still haven't booked our holiday. I was so disappointed when our booking fell through again last week (rooms not available at price quoted) that I've decided to have a few days rest from looking. I am starting to have a few doubts about Dubai as well, mainly the weather (too hot in June!) but also the love it or hate it thing. I am going to look into some of the alternative holidays you have suggested so will keep you posted.

givemeaclue Thu 04-Apr-13 15:48:21

Op if you didn't love Vegas I think youre right not to do Dubai

Well I'm glad the weather is putting you off and not the very valid points people have made about the human rights violations hmm

Cosmostocupcakes 'Doesn't every country have human rights issues? '

No, they don't, which is kind of the point. Indian workers in Dubai are often slaves, in the very real sense of the word. Or have you not noticed the roadside shacks they live in? Were you not aware that they have their passports confiscated and are forced to work 7 days a week building roads?

carlajean Thu 04-Apr-13 22:26:46

I agree totally with lulubellarama how people would want to holiday somewhere built on slave lab our, which is ongoing, is beyond me

PoppyWearer Thu 04-Apr-13 22:31:06

We had a superb holiday at the JBH ten years ago, when Dubai wasn't exactly unspoilt, but it was possible to move.

We went back about six years ago and it was awful. Rude Russians everywhere, prices had gone through the roof, getting a restaurant reservation was a nightmare and traffic was hell. Everywhere was a building site. To top it all off, it rained!

JBH was still great, but markedly less great than previous experience and we didn't enjoy being elbowed out of the way by rich Russians every five minutes.

Not hurrying back.

Kelleewhy Thu 04-Apr-13 22:49:33

Went to the JBH for my honeymoon 11 years ago, before they created that little island for the celebrities to live on and definitely before the England football team stayed in the Burj! It was lovely and quiet then but from the sounds of some of your comments, it's taken a turn for the worse??

It's best to go in December. We went at a ridiculous time of year - September - and it was so hot that our camcorder lens kept steaming up! Even at 10.30pm! All in all we had a wonderful time at the JBH - great service, not many Brits though.

My worst holiday EVER was when we took our DCs to Egypt!! Never again!

Wallison Fri 05-Apr-13 00:00:34

"Our camcorder lens steamed up in Dubai" is a sentence that has so many first-world problems jammed into it that I could hardly begin to unravel them

Also very amused at disapproving of gambling but thinking slavery is ok.

MintyyAeroEgg Fri 05-Apr-13 00:10:41

Op, I am also seriously puzzled as to why you would want to holiday in Dubai. Or why anyone would want to, for that matter.

If you have a large budget then there are some amazingly beautiful countries to visit in Europe all of which will have wonderful luxury hotel options.

I sincerely cannot understand the appeal of Dubai at all confused.

HolidayArmadillo Fri 05-Apr-13 00:18:07

I like Dubai. Sorry.

We stayed at the Jebel Ali Golf resort. And latterly with friends. But June would be far too hot. Latest we've been is April and earliest October. Both still far too hot.

mixedmamameansbusiness Fri 05-Apr-13 15:21:09

I haven't been with children but we went for honeymoon and stayed at the burj al Arab and a hotel in the desert that I can't remember. I enjoyed it but it was air conditioned car,air conditioned hotel, air conditioned shopping centre and for me it really lacked character, but if I went with DC perhaps chilling out by the pool would be more the order anyway, but there are other places I would rather go to for that personally so don't be too disappointed. I

ChickenSpring Fri 05-Apr-13 17:58:22

Minty, it's not so much about wanting to stay in Dubai, but more about staying in a luxury, family friendly resort, short-ish flight, good food. Regarding budget, we set out wanting to spend £4.2k, this has now risen to £4.5k (+£1k drinks/other budget eek!). We can get 10 days half board, ocean views, refurbished room in JBH for this price. I've tried to find alternative luxury holidays in Europe in budget and I'm struggling. I really liked Martinhal in Portugal that Mutley kindly recommended, but couldn't get it on budget including food.
I'm coming to the conclusion we need to find out for ourselves whether we love or hate Dubai as opinions differ so wildly! My concern about the weather is growing, but we have friends who have stayed over the summer and they seemed to think it was fine. I have never stayed anywhere that hot before, it's really hard to imagine how we will adjust to it and how limiting it may be.

Barbie1 Fri 05-Apr-13 18:05:16

I lived in Dubai for four years and was very sad to leave.

I however wouldn't recommend going in the middle of summer, it's so very hot and wouldn't be at all pleasant especially with children

tass1960 Fri 05-Apr-13 18:13:49

Agree re DAM - been for the last three years taking advantage of the summer flavours deal - going again in September - lots of fantastic restaurants to choose from so it's not like half board deal in a hotel with only one restaurant. Always book early though and get great deals

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