Thailand’s Minor Hotels Group, operator of the Anantara, Avani, Elewana and Oaks hotel brands, is set to open its first Anantara-branded hotel in Dubai on The Palm Jumeirah on September 15.
Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort and Spa, owned by Dubai-based Seven Tides Hospitality and formerly known as Royal Amwaj, was originally slated to open back in 2010 under the Movenpick Hotels & Resorts brand.
Anantara was announced as the operator in January this year, although MHG CEO Dillip Rajakarier told Hotelier Middle East the firm had been involved in the project for several years.
The Asian-style resort comprises 293 guest rooms and suites clustered in units of four to eight, with 130 rooms featuring direct access to 11,000 sq m of lagoon pools, 12 beach villas, 18 over-water villas — the first of their kind in the Middle East — and three Royal Beach Villas.
Facilities include a private beach, three natural lagoons, a shoreline infinity pool, Anantara Spa, two tennis courts and a ballroom accommodating 300 people next to the private beach.
Six themed restaurants and bars include Crescendo, an all-day dining restaurant serving classic Middle Eastern and international cuisine; Bushman’s Australian Grill, offering Australian-inspired cuisine; Mekong, featuring Thai, Vietnamese and Chinese dishes; Beach House, a beachfront Mediterranean restaurant; The Lotus Lounge with a dedicated shisha deck; and Mai Bar offering poolside refreshments.
Rajakarier said in comments published by Hotelier Middle East: “We’ve been working on that project for a long time, our contact with Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem (chairman of Dubai World) has been really important for us. We were involved going back a few years where we have talked about the brand and how we can get involved in the Middle East.
"At a principle level we have always been in contact. When you look at it and the hotel it’s a true Anantara — it looks like an Anantara and feels like an Anantara and everything speak for the brand."
Seven Tides CEO Abdulla Bin Sulayem, son of Sultan, said Anantara’s vision for the property matched that of the owners.
“Anantara was chosen after a lengthy selection process involving a number of international management companies. We found that Anantara’s brand DNA was a perfect match with our aspirations for this luxurious property, not just through its Asian design-led proposition, but beyond to encompass the complete guest experience,” he said.