After staying at several Rotana hotels here in the UAE, we expect nothing but the best with The Cove Rotana Resort in Ras Al Khaimah when it comes to admirable hospitality, five star facilities, offerings and services. Last weekend, we got to experience the resort for a 2 night staycation. Everything was of the same outstanding level but we have to admit, the resort overall look is something that we saw for the first time here in the UAE! It’s similar to Santorini, Venice without the gondola rides and Maldives. Let us take you to our stay experience at the Mediterranean island like – UAE’s heavenly oasis in Ras Al Khaimah.
Being situated in Ras Al Khaimah – the 4th emirate, you can expect a tranquil stay away from the buzzing Dubai though it’s only a more than an hour drive from the city. It’s actually our first time in this Emirate and we’ve been itching to stay at a beach resort to experience what people are talking about. To be honest, I thought this emirate would be a very rural area but I was wrong! There are malls, restaurants, pubs and bars, establishments, supermarkets which we even passed by because I left my husband’s slippers 🙂 and many more. If only we knew earlier that there’s Beyond the Beach shop at the property, we could’ve just drive straight to the resort and save time.
Arrived late evening yet we’re not the only guest in the lobby. The place was actually busy but still our check-in was swift. The day after we learned that there’s a separate check in for those who are staying in a Villa. The receptionist explained all the inclusions in our stay and mentioned that we’ll be staying in a Lagoon Villa. In no time, we’re inside a minivan on our way to one of the resort’s 78 villas. Buggies are also available making it more like in the Maldives islands. If it isn’t windy on the day we stayed here, we could’ve just walk all the time and explore this piece of paradise – talk about the lush green landscapes, swaying palm trees, unspoiled beach, the breeze of waves, fine sand, clear blue skies, sunrises and sunsets.
As soon as we entered the villa, we’re in great awe! It was spacious and totally different from the rest of the hotels we stayed in. Designs we’re very Nubian – high rounded brick ceilings, lights and wall frames depict the same. A living area with a bar complete with hanged lights, high seating, refrigerator and a sink are separated with the master bedroom. The bedroom was completely furnished with a large comfortable bed. It was like of a celebrity room as the walk-in closet was so huge with plenty of cabinets. Also the roomy bathroom with two sinks, toiletries from L’occitane and of course my husband’s favorite – the bathtub that even without everything, he’d be happy with this alone.
Amenities in any 5 star Rotana property surely made our stay more comfortable – mini bar, in room safe, LCD TV, multilingual satellite TV channels including music channels, bathrobes, slippers, hairdryer, walk in shower, IDD telephone, iron & iron board, tea & coffee facilities and of course the fast WI-FI connection.
My favorite would be the terrace private plunge pool with the lagoon/sea view accessible through the bedroom and living room. Right after seeing it, I imagined ourselves spending most of our time in the 2 sunbeds or having a cup of coffee and hot chocolate in the separate table set provided. But the unforeseen weather the next day did not allow us to enjoy these things. Now, we have the first reason to return at The Cove anytime soon 🙂
Things like of the fresh rose in the bathroom, the cute camel gift from Rotana, personalized name on the phone and the prepared snacks from the Breeze Bar & Terrace which was really good are simple touches that this brand always got us every time. But the best thing about this Villa was it’s designed to be family-friendly or can be perfect for group of friends. Our villa has a second floor where we imagined our future kids staying here 🙂 There are 2 or 3 bedroom villas that can cater for bigger groups and 204 rooms with the same luxury and comfort.
The Santorini/Venice Feels at The Cove Rotana
Before the rainfall in the morning, we have a bit of time to experience some sunshine which was enough to see the resort. The cascading look of the resort villas under the moonlight already leaves an interesting impression when we arrived at night. And when the morning came, I’m completely blown away! It looks so beautiful and unique. Forgive me if i felt like we’re in a Mediterranean island rather than the Middle East. The striking white architecture and maze of narrow alleyways are very Santorini while the water lagoon under the bridges is Venice like.
Buffet Breakfast at Cinnamon – All Day Dining Restaurant
The resort has 6 restaurants/bar and we’ve tried two of it. The first restaurant where we had our breakfast and Friday brunch was at Cinnamon, The Cove Rotana’s all day dining restaurant. Common breakfast staple like the egg station, sausages, hash brown, veal bacon, salads, bread are present. What made it excel from the rest were the extensive offerings of each section, crepe/ waffle live station, eggs benedict, a gluten free corner and many healthy options. Apart from the fresh salads, fruits smoothies are also available. My husband’s favorite was also present – corned beef with potatoes 🙂 We thought we’re already on the brunch as the menu options are many.
With the popular Friday brunch, probably one of the best we had in the UAE. I have to make a separate blog post as the options are too many and I wanted to show you guys all their menu options. I assure you that it can be your sole reason of visiting the resort, worth the drive from Dubai.
Things To Do at The Cove Rotana Resort
There are many things to do at the resort that you can spend more days here to relax, unwind, have a culinary experience or be adventurous as you wish. One staff even told us that there are guests who spend more than 2 weeks at the resort.
1. Relax at 2 Infinity Swimming Pools or by the Beach
We haven’t really used their two huge infinity swimming pools despite that it’s both temperature-controlled because of the cold weather, 13 to 16 degrees during our time of visit in February. Believe it or not, the UAE – a Middle East country can get really cold! I suggest you to experience it on your own as the views were spectacular! The second reason why we need to return here when the weather was bearable was this 🙂 Late March up to month of May is the perfect summer weather here.
For families with kids, there’s a pool dedicated for them or if you can drop them in the resort’s Flippers Kids Club room where your children can enjoy playtime. The club also has a safe fenced outdoor area.
You can also opt to relax at the 600m pristine beach of the resort. I saw photos from the web overlooking the Arabian Gulf with clear blue water! I bet it really is as this area of the UAE is unspoiled. While we didn’t swim by the beach, watching the sunset here was truly unforgettable.
2. Experience Culinary Treats at 6 Restaurants/Bars
With its 6 signature restaurants and bar, any foodie or those who just love to eat like us can enjoy the resort. These are (1) the Cinnamon International All Day Dining restaurant (2) Basilico Mediterranean Restaurant (3) Breeze Bar & Lobby Lounge Café (4) Laguna Bay Pool Side Café & bar (5) Sunset Pool Bar and (6) Breakers on the Beach Bar. As you can see, each of their pools has a bar making it more convenient for guests. Now if you got hungry in the middle of the night and don’t want to go out, ring their 24-hour in room dining service. The property’s brunch and breakfast options cater for the little ones too.
As I’ve mentioned above, we had breakfast and brunch at Cinnamon, while we spend a romantic dinner at their famous upscale bistro – Basilico Mediterranean Restaurant. The restaurant offers a mix of traditional and modern dishes and a variety of choices from all over the Mediterranean with an Italian highlights. Again, let us share our dinner experience in my upcoming post 🙂
3. Be fit and Pampered at Bodylines Fitness & Wellness Club
The original plan is to have a massage by the beach in one of the resort’s private cabana but unfortunately the weather did not permit us. Not that it stopped us to pamper ourselves. We still had our Swedish massage in one of their couple rooms. It was so relaxing that it’s hard to control not to fall asleep! 🙂 Thanks to the 2 female therapists, Leka and RC. We enjoyed some tea time right after the massage. Other selection of massage treatments were Balinese, Thai and more.
And if you feel like detoxifying your body, they have a steam, sauna, Jacuzzi available in their fully equipped gym where fitness classes, cardiovascular and weight training are conducted.
4. Be Adventurous with Water Sports Activities
Water Sports Activities like diving and snorkeling or offsite activities include sightseeing trips, desert trips, fishing trips are available upon requests. There are a lot of things to do in this Emirate such as sea cruises, seaplane adventure, hiking at Jebel Jais (the highest mountain peak in the UAE), explore the Hajar Mountains, visit the museums and old forts, desert camping, horse/camel riding, or simply experience the authentic Ras al Khaimah food and culture.
The Staff and Service
Like the previous Rotana hotels we stayed in, top thing that is admirable about their properties is the highly commendable hospitality and professionalism of the staff. All staff that we met along during our stay was incredibly friendly and warm but if favouritism is allowed, after Ms. Rowena (THANK YOU!) it would be Elsa at the Basilico, Adelle at the reception and all the mini-van/buggies drivers. Kudos to these hardworking guys! Despite the cold and rainy weather, they did their job very well. We’d like to extend our warmest appreciation to all the staff who made our stay a comfortable and unforgettable one. Hope to see you guys again very soon 🙂
We can genuinely say that The Cove Rotana is now one of our favorite resorts in the UAE. With its uniquely designed concept, European feels with Arabian touch, extensive and delectable cuisines, outstanding recreational facilities, 5 star services and the hospitality of the staff – one can simply stay here to have a perfect and relaxing getaway.
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*We were invited by The Cove Rotana. However, all opinions are our own.