Introduction: A Hop to the Maldives
Review: Park Hyatt New York
Review: Emirates Lounge JFK
Review: Emirates First Class A380 JFK-DXB
Review: Park Hyatt Dubai
Review: Emirates First Class Lounge Dubai
Review: Emirates First Class 777 DXB-MLE
Getting to the Park Hyatt Hadahaa
Review: Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa
Review: Etihad Business A330 MLE-AUH
Review: Etihad First Class Lounge
Review: Etihad First Class A380 AUH-JFK
Review: American Business A321T JFK-LAX
Alaska Airlines allows for a free stopover on award travel, so we took advantage of the opportunity and scheduled a three day visit to Dubai on our way to the Maldives. As part of our triathlon of Park Hyatt visits on this vacation, we stayed at the Park Hyatt Dubai while in the Emirates.
I had never been in the heart of Arabia prior to this trip, and was super excited to see what this desert nation is like. I had heard so many competing narratives about Dubai that I really had no expectations going in other than:
1. It would be hot.
2. There would be a lot of sand.
3. The Burj Khalifa is really tall.
I was one for three.
The Park Hyatt Dubai is very close to Dubai International Airport – only a 10 minute drive, and only even that long because of absurd traffic patterns that require you to pass the hotel as many as three times before turning in to it.
That is one thing I learned about Dubai quickly. It seems that development has happened so quickly there, and that there is so much money for construction projects – including roads – that little thought was ever put in to how to route traffic as efficiently as possible. Need to get somewhere else? Let’s build a road for that.
So dedicated traffic lanes criss cross, bisect and looptiloop each other, sending you often in circles to do as little as cross the intersection. Good times.
You should know that Dubai is divided up into roughly three sectors:
The North, where the Dubai Creek, the Old Souk and government buildings are located is the heart of Old Dubai and where the oldest development can be found.
The Center is Downtown Dubai and the business district. Development here surrounds the Burj Khalifa and the Dubai Mall.
The South surrounds the Jameira properties, the Burj al Arab, Atlantis and the Palm Islands, and is the newest section of the city.
Each area of Dubai is only a 10 minute’s drive from the next (without traffic) and cabs are cheap and plentiful throughout the city. From our hotel in the north to the Souk at Jameira in the south, we paid about 100 AED, which is roughly $25.
The Park Hyatt is located within the Dubai Creek, in the north of the city. It’s important to realize that this means that you’re 5-10 miles away from some of the more famous aspects of Dubai. I didn’t find this limiting, and really enjoyed our location, but if you’re going to Dubai so that you can wake up in the shadow of the Burj Khalifa or to look out on the sea shore, don’t stay at the Park Hyatt.
The property is part of a development that includes dozens of residential villas as well as a massive golf course. There’s even mini golf there as well, built on actual grass with sand traps, but we didn’t have time to check that out.
The architecture of the Park Hyatt is stunning, and its design resembles an amalgamation one part Turkish mosque, one part safari chic.
Inside the lobby, in addition to the front desk was a concierge desk with incredibly helpful staff. They were on call and ready for us at all times of the day with restaurant recommendations and touring ideas, and had a car for us at a moment’s notice every time we walked toward the front entrance.
We booked the reservation as Cash + Points, so it cost $125 per night (plus tax) and 10,000 Hyatt points. I then applied one of my Diamond Suite Upgrades to the reservation. Upon check in, I learned that they had upgraded my upgrade from a standard suite to a terrace suite. Sweet!
The property is massive. I mean, seriously huge. We were in building four, and because we were in a terrace suite, our room was at the very end of the building. The walk from our room to the lobby was easily 5 minutes or more, and we got lost along the way many a time. If you’re visiting the Park Hyatt Dubai, I would recommend requesting a room in buildings 2 or 3 to minimize schlepping.
Our terrace suite was stunning, spacious and comfortable. Inside the door, there was a small entryway looking out to the living room.
The living room, looking out on the Dubai Creek and all its sail boats, had a sofa, two sitting chairs, as well as a desk and a mini bar with Nespresso machine. The entire mini bar is complementary for guests staying in a suite like ours at this property. On the coffee table, a bottle of wine and massive fruit display were there to welcome our arrival. I did not select this welcome amenity when we checked in – I almost always choose points instead – but they sent it anyway.
The bedroom and bathroom were to the right of the entry, and opened up to second terrace overlooking the dock.
The bedroom had a king bed, a sitting chair and ottoman, side tables and a dresser – nothing out of the ordinary. A window/pass-through connected the bedroom with the bathroom, though the shutters could be closed to provide more privacy.
The bathroom was decked out with double sinks, a separate toilet room, a large soaking tub and a massive walk-in shower with rain shower head. The shower was absolutely blissful, though a step down from the shower at the Park Hyatt New York.
The grounds of the Park Hyatt Dubai are as beautiful as inside the buildings. The pool area in particular was awesome, though we didn’t use it at all, and I never saw anyone else there for that matter.
We received complementary breakfast each day, of course, as Hyatt Gold Passport Diamonds. The breakfast buffet was plentiful, with standard options like eggs, meats, cheeses and the like, along with a Middle Eastern spread that would be familiar to anyone who’s enjoyed breakfast at an Israeli kibbutz: cucumbers, tomatoes, yogurts, hummus and the like.
In addition to the buffet, they offered many made-to-order dishes. One day, Danielle ordered the shakshuka, which was delicious. I twice ordered a ful dish, essentially stewed fava beans, which was divine.
The Park Hyatt Dubai is a beautiful property, with easy access to Dubai International Airport, that is a destination un to itself with serene grounds for relaxing and enjoying the Emirati sun. The hotel staff are incredibly helpful and attentive.
As a category 5 Hyatt, the Park Hyatt Dubai represents a fantastic redemption value. I could not be more happy to have stayed there, and the hotel’s staff made our first visit to Dubai – a very foreign city that we knew almost nothing about – super easy and comfortable.
The hotel’s location on the Dubai Creek, though slightly removed from Dubai’s hottest attractions, provided awesome sunset views and a very relaxing environment. I can’t wait to go back!