Waiting for our yearly vacation aka anniversary trip can sometimes be tedious. Especially when everyone is sharing their holiday photos on social media, it made us more longing to rest and travel! So it’s really an added bonus that the UAE has a lot of vacation spots where you don’t need to leave and pay for expensive airline tickets. Our desire ended when we visited the capital last weekend. Let us take you to a perfect staycation treat in one of the most prestigious hotel in Abu Dhabi – the Crowne Plaza, Yas Island.
Getting to the Crowne Plaza Yas Island
The hotel is about 12 minutes’ drive from Abu Dhabi International Airport and a little more than an hour drive from Al Ain or Dubai International airport. If you’re from Dubai like us, you need to drive for less than 2 hours. It isn’t a problem anyway as the roads in the UAE are superbly fine. With its locality Yas Island, you can expect that the hotel is situated in a prominent and luxurious surrounding. Yas Waterpark and Ferrari World are about 10 minutes’ drive from Crowne Plaza. Other nearby attractions are Yas Links Abu Dhabi, Yas Marina Circuit, Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, Yas Beach and Yas Mall.
Reception and Lobby Lounge
Bright patterns, cool decors, snazzy carpeting and fancy chairs in a very spacious lobby are the noticeable features of the grand reception. It was so grand and attractive that anyone will find hard not to be impressed! It certainly sets a bright yet warm mood of every guest checking in. Having to arrive late in the evening after work, doing errands and the journey from Dubai, we felt really exhausted that night but the warm greetings from the front desk wiped it easily. The place was bustling last weekend and to prove you we were booked in the residences of the hotel, the Staybridge Suites as the main hotel was fully booked. We were informed that most of the time this property is running out of rooms for guests!
Aside from the lobby, the hotel has a funky and colorful lounge, the “Views Lobby Lounge” with large seating space and colorful furniture. It guarantees that one won’t be out of a seat if ever one needs to wait for check-in. With light snacks and beverages like coffee and tea, it’s a perfect spot for those who are waiting for their business partners or just want to have a good read. It’s a breath of fresh air from the stuffy fixtures that one usually finds in most hotel chains.
The Room in StayBridge Suites
The security level in Crowne Plaza was highly commendable. In the apartment, you cannot access the elevator if your card is not activated from the reception. Heading to our apartment-like suite, the feeling of excitement boost upon seeing the inside! Homey and inviting – this one bedroom suite featured a kitchen area equipped with modern facilities – a conventional oven, a two door fridge, electric stove top, a sink with a quirky designed faucet, complete with kitchen utensils. The kitchen is actually functional and can be used, some other hotel have the same facilities but not really works. The work desk can be used as a dining table too since it is strategically placed near the kitchen area. A lounge chair with two chairs and a coffee table was another option.
The double bed was so comfortable that we had a good night sleep. Thanks also to the effective curtains blocking any light coming in. If not because of the alarm the next day, you’d probably didn’t see any update on our Instagram stories! With the bathroom, it has a bathtub and a shelf made of wood where once can easily place the clothes without getting splash by the water. The housekeeping did a good job when they placed another set of toiletries in the bathtub. Walk-in closet was small but enough for us as we’re staying over a weekend only.
Rooms in Crowne Plaza Main Building
And if you want to see the room in the actual hotel, the Crowne plaza team provided the photos below. Click photo to enlarge or check their official website to see more.
Buffet Breakfast at Jing Asia Restaurant
Waking up the next morning feeling refreshed, we went to have our breakfast in the hotels’ all day dining restaurant – Jing Asia. Adorned with rattan chairs and quirky designed ceilings, filled with many seating and a widespread selection of international and Middle Eastern cuisine, it was how a breakfast setting should be. You can also choose to dine in inside or outside terrace where you can gaze at the beautiful view while dining.
Live stations, gluten free corner, cold cuts and salad section, bread, soups, cheese, desserts corner, Indian dishes, Arabic cuisines and western favorites – there was so many to choose from that made us feel we’re actually having a brunch rather than a breakfast! My favorite would be the cold cuts of smoked salmon, smoked trout and peppered mackerel as it was very tasty. The husband of course opts for Western favorites such as baked beans, hash brown potatoes, sausages, bacons and pancakes.
There were a total of 6 dining options in Crowne Plaza that one would rather stay in the hotel and try different cuisines and dining experience. Apart from Jing Asia restaurant and the Views Lobby Lounge, they had a bar and restaurant Stills European Bar & Brasserie which has the longest bar I’ve seen in the UAE. The gastropub serves European food, international draught beer, an extensive whiskey range and more spirits. Every Thursday, Stills had a ladies night. Last weekend, the restaurant was celebrating St. Patrick’s Day so the place which is a usual full black color was decorated with green and guests wear green clothes too, how lovely!
The hotel and resort’s pool bar named Sundowner is certainly a cool and favorite spot for those who spend more time sunbathing and swimming. They served light beverages and snacks during lunch and dinner from 11:00 am to 8:00 pm. But if you feel lazy to go to the pool, you can opt to order in their 24 hour in-room dining. Another restaurant located in the lower ground floor was the Barouk restaurant which serves Lebanese and Middle Eastern cuisines. We attended a media brunch in the same and you can find the full experience in this post.
- Outdoor Pool Area for Kids and Adults – From 7am to 9pm, one can simply enjoy the partly shaded temperature controlled swimming pool surrounded by many sun loungers. Your kids can also enjoy the dedicated pool area for them.
- Kids Club – Or if they want to play you can leave them with trained staff at the hotel’s Kids Club where they can play inside or in the outside playground.
- Fitness Center – The fitness center located in the lower ground floor is fully equipped with latest training gears, complete with sauna, steam rooms, a squash court.
- Spa Treatments – For a full body relaxation, you can book one from their signature massages and treatments.
- Wi-Fi Services – Though most luxury hotels have a free WIFI included in the room rate, it is worth to mention that the WIFI connection in this hotel and resorts works very fast anywhere in the hotel!
- Meeting Rooms and Events – The Crowne Plaza has a total of 9 meeting rooms equipped with state-of-the art facilities and a large ballroom perfect for weddings or other events.
- Tours and Activities – The property can also arranged several tours and activities according to your preference, just ask the helpful staff from the reception.
Staff and Service
From the swift check-in and great assistance from the front desk, alert opening of doors, quick attending of our needs from the housekeeping and of course the Chefs, restaurant managers, wait staff who quickly removed our plates and changed, everyone who we bumped in and smile or ask how’s our stay so far and the lovely marketing team of Crowne Plaza – thank you so much for making us feel very at home. We hope everyone to keep the same level of service and kindness as these should be the characteristics of a luxury hotel. The beautiful, high end facilities, complete amenities and delicious food are vital but the great service still prevails when it comes to judging a stay experience.
As first time visitors of Crowne Plaza Yas Island, we must say that it sets our expectations with other branches as well – great service, kind staff, smartly designed and modern facilities and delectable offerings. The property is a perfect spot for those who are visiting the capital for the first time and wanted to explore the city or to have a pleasurable vacation retreat. Business travelers can find it appealing too because of its prime location and facilities designed for business professionals. It was indeed a short but sweet staycation treat that will surely remember and keep for the rest of our lives.
Crowne Plaza Abu Dhabi – Yas Island
Address: Yas Island Golf Plaza PO Box 41880, Abu Dhabi – 41880, United Arab Emirates
Tel: 971-2-6563 000 Fax: 971-2-6563001
Social Media: Facebook, Instagram
*Thanks to the amazing team of Crowne Plaza for hosting us, opinions as always are entirely our own.