We get away from the city noise to a place that takes our breath away
Living in Dubai can feel like a never-ending vacation for those of us fortunate enough to enjoy the heavenly sand strips and glistening blue waters, but step onto the vast Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai property and you'll likely feel that you've been missing out.
The sand is just a little bit softer, the sea is a brighter blue and the bustling sounds of the city seem to quickly fade away (despite the celebrated Nikki Beach Club being just a few steps away).
It's not that Dubai isn't filled with five-star beach resorts that take our breath away, it's that even the air at this particular location feels fresher than ever. And it is without doubt due largely to its secluded spot on the remote Pearl Jumeirah. But credit must be given where credit is due, and it is primarily thanks to the The Nikki Beach brand that the experience truly stands out.
The famous Miami-style concept is known for its simplicity which features an abundance of white interiors complemented by earthy tones and eco-centric elements. Launched by Jack Penrod in 1998 in the US, it aims to combine entertainment, dining and music in a luxury beach offering. The idea comes full circle, as most rooms (we stayed at the Ocean Luux Suite) overlook tranquil sea views from spacious living rooms, bedrooms and balconies. Gone are the traditional luxurious interiors that often act as distractions – even if unconsciously – such as blinding chandeliers, heavily embroidered carpets and gold-gilded furnishings. Rather, there's an airy, soothing feel about the easy-going style of the modern property. It revolves around you, the guest, as the simplicity of it all relaxes the mind enough to wash away the daily nuisances that amount to intensified city stress.
Even the staff seem to roam around stress-free, even though the service is remarkable. Then again, it's hard not to relax when your surroundings involve the sounds of beach waves and views of delightful palm trees. The resort's numbers speak for themselves, as it does exceptionally well in Dubai. Hanna Azi, general manager, tells us the property is experiencing steady two-digit annual growth in spite of all the noise in the arguably saturated hospitality market. In the summer, the average occupancy remains higher than 80 percent, according to Azi.
This is partly due to the glamorous Nikki Beach Club, where the motto is 'Celebrating Life'. It's difficult to think of anything other than celebrations when at the getaway. It is tucked away from the city after all. All factors come together, however, as the food at the beach club is very much above average. We order a large sushi boat with various fish that are as fresh as they come. We didn't expect less from a beachfront resort. Drinks flow and orders are served quickly, even on a busy day. And as the numbers show, the beach club is usually busy.
Azi says it is 'outperforming' others as it concentrates on a niche segment. We are unsurprised to find out that it includes many a millennials. While some hoteliers target younger generations seeking affordable accomodation, Nikki Beach believes many millennials are willing to pay for a premium stay they enjoy.
As we look around at the faces relishing in the carefree vibe, we realise we are one of them.