By Naushad Khan
Dubai is one of my favourite destinations and after my 6th visit to this Emirate this past week, I am convinced that I will someday live in this city. It has an energy that just keeps on going no matter what.
I remember my very first 96 hour VISA stop way back in 2008. The harmonious blend of east and west that exists in Dubai is magical. Modern architecture; glass adorned skyscrapers; a local and large expat community – this would be what living in a future world will be like, surely.
Today Dubai has a total population in excess of 2.1 million people, 85% of which are expats living and working in this part of the UAE (United Arab Emirates). And this figure is set to rise as Dubai continues its expansion into becoming a modern and world class city and proud host of World Expo 2020.
This trip was extra special though as I was part of a global media delegation that attended the first Dubai Food Festival, a 23-day event that started on February 21 and will end on March 15. Our home for the week was the tallest hotel in the world, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, located 20 minutes from Dubai International Airport in the heart of the city on the buzzing Sheikh Zayed Road, close to Downtown Burj Khalifa and Business Bay.
Dubai must have some of the finest 5 star properties in the Middle East, if not the world and the JW Marriott Marquis certainly makes one stand up and notice the high quality of luxury accommodation that is available in Dubai.
The Marriot name is globally associated with luxury and style and the JW Marriot Marquis Dubai has certainly staked its claim as one of Dubai’s finest.
Like all new developments in Dubai, the JW Marriott Marquis is an architectural masterpiece with two iconic towers offering 1608 luxury rooms and suites, exceptional event and business facilities, an enticing array of bars and restaurants and the world class Saray Spa and Health Club.
My room on the 45th floor was tastefully decorated with ultra modern furnishings that included:
• High speed internet connectivity
• Two–line telephone
• Individual controlled air-conditioning
• Interactive TV system
• Luxury bedding
• International TV Channels
• In-room safe
• Iron & ironing board
• High quality bathroom amenities, including a bathrobe and hair dryer
• 24 hour room service
The JW Marriott Marquis Dubai has become one of the trendiest spots and a must for local socialites. With a choice of some of the best restaurants, bars and recently named the number one night spot in Dubai for the VIP Room, one is truly spoilt for choice at this property.
We had the pleasure of sampling some of the cuisine at the various fine dining restaurants including Prime68, Rang Mahal by Atul Kochhar, Positano, Tong Thai and Izakaya. Each one offers a unique experience from decor to taste, but true to the Marriott brand, the service across all these was worthy of a gold medal.
I will follow this article with another one about my food experience on this trip.
Fun facts about the JW Marriott Marqius:
• At a height of 355 metres, the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai is the tallest hotel in the world. It is just 26 metres shorter than the Empire State Building in New York and 35 metres taller than the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
• The shape of the two towers was inspired by a date palm tree, an indigenous desert plant.
• Combined, the hotel’s 15 food and beverage outlets can seat 2743 people.
• If you want to really relax in the pool, why not listen to some music? The JW Marriott Marquis swimming pool has underwater speakers so you don’t miss a beat.
• To reflect the 24 hour, 7 days opening hours of La Farine Boulangerie, the restaurant has 247 mirrors.
• Rang Mahal by Atul Kochhar, the hotel’s Indian fine dining restaurant, is home to the world’s first Michelin starred Indian chef – Atul Kochhar.
• If you’re feeling romantic in the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, or simply want to really relax, switch your bathroom lighting to ‘Spa Mood’. The room will glow with a soft pink haze, and help you unwind after a busy day.
• All the knives, forks and crockery in the hotel would stretch across the length of 5000 Rolls Royce limousines.
• In the Dubai Ballroom, lighting concepts for the chandeliers and LED lights can be selected from a choice of 1000 colours.
• The hotel’s Japanese outlet, Izakaya, is one of the few restaurants in the Middle East where the Head Chef has a license to serve Blowfish, a poisonous delicacy.
• The JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai will be the only hotel in the Middle East where up to 1000 people can meet, sleep and dine under one roof, in one location.
• There is a bottle of vodka for sale in The Vault for 23000 aed (the local currency – converted to Rand that comes to almost R80000!)
• In the magnificent Tong Thai restauraunt, the entire team from Head Chef to Servers and Bar Staff are female.
• The diamond shaped LED light systems that glisten atop the two JW Marriott Marquis Dubai towers were designed by Janaka Wijayawardana of Emirates. A new landmark in the night sky!
• If stacked, all the glasses in the hotel would reach a height of 13 kilometres – that’s 15 times higher than the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest structure!
• The Dubai Ballroom in the JW Marriott Marquis has the largest LED screen in the UAE.
• Three tones of Dead Sea salt have been shipped into the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai in order to service the hotel’s indulgent Saray Spa and its signature Dead Sea Floatation Pool.
• The JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai has enough banqueting chairs to seat passengers travelling on five A380 aircrafts.
• There are 89 public toilets in the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai. You won’t ever have to wait.
• There are 1326 rainbow coloured bottles in a stunning display in the Lounge, but none contain alcohol.
• In the contemporary and funky Japanese restaurant, Isakaya, guests order their food using an Ipad.
• There are 22 fully functional kitchens in the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai and the main kitchen is the same size as the ballroom.