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Wed 31 Jan 2018 07:57 PM

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Review: Is this Dubai's swankiest rooftop lounge?

The Penthouse at Five Palm Jumeirah is a day club in the morning and a posh bar at night

Review: Is this Dubai's swankiest rooftop lounge?

If you have not heard of The Penthouse, chances are you will soon. Dubai’s newest gem is not located in Al Quoz or the back of Sheikh Zayed Road, but in the contemporary 5-star hotel Five Palm Jumeirah. It opened a month ago, but it is already gathering an elite crowd, and fast.

Situated on the 16th floor, it operates as a day club in the morning and a restaurant and bar at night. Designed in swanky white interiors, glass-lined swimming pools and chic loungers, it overlooks stunning views of the Dubai skyline on one side and the Arabian Gulf on the other.

The adults-only venue is vastly spacious, but has a cosy feel thanks to its narrow, corridor-style structure. It serves a Japanese-style cuisine, with a mix of international dishes.

Having arrived hungry and ready to dig in, we started off with small dishes including the spicy tuna tartar, served on crispy nori crackers, and shirashi served on taco nori. Both were exceptional; fresh, rich in taste and easy to gobble up. We especially relished the dash of truffle on the tuna tartar.

We ordered a number of other dishes, and were told they would be served as soon as they were ready. It did not take long, however, and we were impressed by the speed of service.

The staff at Penthouse are friendly and accommodating. You will not find rude service here. Sameer, the manager, was particularly helpful when choosing dishes. He recommended the (rather delightful) chicken and shrimp gyozas, which we were happy to devour immediately once served - as one does a perfectly steamed gyoza. Next, we had the deep fried baby squid, seamlessly cooked for a pleasant mix of crunchy and squishy.

For dessert, we tried a selection of Japanese ice cream mochi, paired with fresh fruits and berries. The mochi is very good, served at the right temperature; not too cold and not too sweet.

The Penthouse is surprisingly affordable for a 5-star venue, with small dishes starting a low-priced $10.

One of the best things about it is its food service, which operates until 12am on weekdays and 1am on weekends. The place itself is open until 2am on weekdays and 3am on weekends.

Day passes are available to non-hotel guests at AED250, with an AED150 food and drink voucher.

It currently offers an AED400 pass, valid on weekdays, that includes pool access, an AED250 food and drink voucher and a 45-minute massage.

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