By Lubna Hamdan
It's unassuming, understated, unpretentious and unbelievably good: it's the beach club that has kept us coming back for more
Just when I thought I had seen it all, a flash mob, well, flashes before my eyes. It was 8pm on a Friday night and I had been under the sun for at least six hours when I thought – naturally – that I was hallucinating.
It didn’t help that I was puffing away on a shisha either, but right there in front of me was, indeed, a flash mod performing to a classic 90s R&B hit. I can’t for the life of me remember what the song was – blame it on the heat stroke - but I do remember having a strange feeling that I hadn’t felt in a very, very long time.
Was it nausea from my lemon mint shisha? Was it that third beef slider I definitely shouldn’t have had? No. This was a good feeling; a warm, fuzzy, delightfully blissful sensation: nostalgia. And in Dubai, it has an address: ladies and gentlemen – you can thank me later by taking me back there - that address is Cove Beach.
Mind you, this isn’t the same dull beach club that sat forgotten in the Jumeirah Beach Hotel, this is the new and strikingly improved version located at a stunning seafront in the illustrious Caesar’s Palace Bluewaters.
Forget the tiny swimming pool that made you feel claustrophobic – this beach club has all the space you need: three sizeable contemporary marble swimming pools that will make you wish you had one in your backyard.
Say goodbye to the headache inducing techno tunes and reminisce on less pretentious times with old school tunes that will have you swaying and singing along – rather embarrassingly in my case.
I’m a regular and tried everything from the sunbeds (AED300 minimum spend) to the cabanas with a private Jacuzzi and your very own dedicated attendant. They're worth the splurge because you’ll probably spend the entire day and night at Cove Beach. Seriously, you will not want to leave, and let me give you the main reason why. Besides the refreshing, unassuming atmosphere, it’s the food that will keep you coming back for more.
If you’ve lived in Dubai for as long as I have (my entire life) you’ll know that it’s nearly impossible to come across a beach club with good food. I’m not talking about mediocre, average poolside dishes – the two.0 restaurant at Cove Beach has better food than some of the Michelin-starred restaurants we’ve tried around the world.
I don’t know who the chef is but they better hold onto him. He even introduced a massive oyster dish for $33 (AED120); that’s pretty affordable for oysters in my opinion.
While you can’t go wrong with any dish on the menu – unless you’ve got allergies of course - my favourites are the classic sushi rolls like the California as the seafood is fresh, fresh, fresh and the mouth-watering sautée prawns with garlic, lemon and chilli are just superb. I’m not a foodie but there’s just something about outstanding food that gets me excited. Don’t forget to try the beef sliders, of which I ate three too many.
If you want to leave the pools and crowd behind, head down to the beach for some peace and quiet. It’s not as secluded as Nikki Beach’s but you can still leave your worries behind while enjoying a view of the enormous Dubai Eye and backdrop of the Dubai Marina.
Finally, end your beach day with a healthy ginger and mint sorbet. I wasn’t sold on the idea at first either, but it’s actually quite refreshing and tastes surprisingly delicious. I don’t see myself ditching the calorie heavy desserts just yet but I’d say ginger sorbets are a good start…
And when I said end your beach day, I meant move to the Cove Beach lounge – it’s where the flash mobs happen and Friday is the best day to go for the all-day Fresh party when the old school hits play until late.
Don’t let the cold weather stop you from heading down there because it’s one of the loveliest locations during the winter when the heaters come out and you can enjoy a glass of grape with the chilly wind blowing through your hair. Just remember when you’re enjoying your time, swaying from side to side, you’re not hallucinating, you’re just at Cove Beach Dubai.
Didn't I tell you that you can thank me later?