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Top 10 places in the Middle East to take your loved one this Valentine’s

Often overlooked as a holiday destination, the Middle East is home to some of the most luxurious hotels in the world. Whether you are looking for an urban getaway to celebrate Valentine’s Day or simply wish to relax in the tranquillity of the desert, here’s a varied of selection of places to stay that’ll help make your romantic break that little bit more special. One&Only Royal Mirage, Dubai, UAE Between the timeless desert and the cosmopolitan charms of the coast, rise majestic palms reflected in cool oasis waters. This is One&Only Royal Mirage, a stylish Dubai hotel of intricate arches, domes, towers and courtyards. In a thriving world-class city renowned for its soaring skyscrapers, One&Only Royal Mirage recalls the romance of Old Arabia, with 65 acres of lush green lawns and immaculate flower beds set along a kilometre of private beachfront. Kempinski Ciragan Palace, Istanbul, Turkey Spoil your loved one this Valentine’s Day in the luxury and glamour of a genuine Ottoman Palace. You’ll lose yourselves in a weekend of pure indulgence, extreme comfort and heavenly delights at Kempinski Ciragan Palace in Istanbul. With a heated infinity pool and tailor-made spa treatments, the Ciragan Palace is the perfect setting for your Valentine’s break. From just 900.00 EUR you and your partner can enjoy accommodation in a Grand Deluxe Bopshorus View Room, special St. Valentine’s Day amenities in the room upon arrival, an opulent buffet breakfast for two in Laledan Restaurant, a romantic St. Valentine’s Dinner in Laledan Restaurant (5-course gourmet menu excluding beverages). Eastern Mangroves Hotel & Spa, Abu Dhabi, UAE One of Anantara’s most recent openings, Eastern Mangroves is an inspired Arabian and Colonial styled fusion hotel and forms part of an integrated hotel, marina, retail and residential zone, set away from the city life of central Abu Dhabi and its Corniche. Here you’ll find an invigorating spa, expansive infinity pool, retail shops and an intimate Thai restaurant serving the finest Asian cuisine. Chedi Muscat Oman, Oman This five-star boutique hotel boasts award-winning contemporary décor, together with the most romantic of locations. You’ll find it nestled between the serene waters of the Gulf of Oman and the majestic Al Hajar Mountains. The elegant architecture, relaxed atmosphere and guaranteed sunshine make it the ideal place to indulge in some serious R’n’R. The Chedi Muscat Oman is perfect for those seeking privacy, space and the kind of discreet service Asia does so well. There are 21 acres of elegantly landscaped gardens to wander, or you can head to the newly opened 13-suite spa – the biggest in Muscat. Here you can take your pick from treatments including Ayurvedic massage, a Balinese bathing ceremony and REN bespoke facial. There are three swimming pools, including the stunning 103-metre Long Pool, as well as a state-of-the-art 400-square-metre gym. And when it’s time to eat, you can choose from the six restaurants, or simply enjoy a relaxed lunch down on the beach. You’ll find plenty to do in the surrounding area, too. This unique country offers up some once-in-a-lifetime opportunities: you can take a 4×4 through its vast deserts and sand dunes, watch the turtles at Ras al-Jinz, or explore the souks, scented with coffee and frankincense. Either way, you’ll be guaranteed a memorable break. Banyan Tree Al Wadi, UAE Amid stretches of desert sand in tranquil Wadi Khadeja, an oasis of peace awaits at Banyan Tree Al Wadi. A sanctuary surrounded by the evergreen ghaf tree, a luxury desert resort in the United Arab Emirates to offer all-pool villas. Experience magical Arabian nights and the romance of living like the nomads of yore, complete with Asian-inspired hydrotherapy spa facilities, a dedicated nature reserve, and private beach access at Banyan Tree Ras Al Khaimah Beach. More than just a sanctuary for the senses, Banyan Tree Al Wadi is the perfect destination to celebrate your love. Whether you are looking for a romantic weekend, a vacation of a lifetime or the perfect wedding and honeymoon you will find the most enchanting and captivating experiences waiting for you at Banyan Tree Al Wadi. Follow the alluring scent of romance for a dinner adventure in the wild heart of the Al Wadi desert. Ascend to the dramatic Saffron Tower where a personal chef and butler orchestrate your dinner amidst soft sand dunes and the resort’s Bedouin tented villas. A symphony of oriental flavours will please your palate, while you enjoy complete privacy for the most intimate of tête-à-têtes. Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi, UAE Escape the Hustle and Bustle and enjoy a romantic Valentine’s Day at the prestigious Emirates Palace. Begin your celebrations with a romantic dinner for two in their contemporary Sayad brasserie including a welcome drink and a bottle of Laurent Perrier Rosé. Afterwards, enjoy the luxury of a five star room or suite. A delicious Valentine’s breakfast will be served to your room. For those who wish to venture out of their room, there is 1.3km of white pristine beach to explore, as well as two lavish pool areas, two gyms and a spa. Amanruya, Bodrum, Turkey There are few places in the world which offer classical history and natural beauty in equal measure. The Aegean region of Turkey is one such place. This fabled coastline is where Homer’s heroes were born, where the ancient Greeks consulted their oracles and the Romans built magnificent temples to honour their gods. Everywhere are reminders of this glorious past, vying for attention with spectacular natural scenery including ancient pine forests and scalloped bays. One such bay on the Bodrum Peninsula is home to Amanruya, a tranquil all-season resort. Named after the Sanskrit word for peace, ‘aman’, and the Turkish word for dream, Amanruya is set on a peaceful hillside, offering breathtaking views of the sea and a winding pathway leading to a sheltered pebble beach. Madinat Jumeirah, Dubai, UAE Head for the romantic Arabian Summerhouses of Dar al Masyaf in the three-winged resort of Madinat Jumeirah. These represent this luxury beachfront resort’s premium accommodation, tucked away between lush gardens and tranquil waterways. You can reach a range of romantic restaurants via chauffeured authentic Abra boat or there’s also the excellent Talise Spa for out-of-this-world spa and wellness experiences to make your Valentine’s break extra special. Four Seasons, Doha, Qatar This resort-like waterfront city hotel offers luxury touches that echo the essence of what you want on a romantic break: comfort, service and beauty for all five senses. Cool off in their grotto pools or enjoy a day at the Spa and Wellness Centre which offers a complete range of beauty and aromatherapy treatments. And for Valentine’s, why not share your spa experience in a luxurious private spa suite for couples? Atlantis the Palm, Dubai, UAE At Atlantis, they take romance seriously and know that when it comes to Valentine’s Day, everything must be just right. Nothing beats al fresco dining under the stars, and there’s no better way to say “I love you” than with a Valentine’s dinner on the beach. Complete a perfect evening with a bottle of Champagne, a five course set menu and a little romantic stargazing.

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Editor of A Luxury Travel Blog and has worked in the travel industry for more than 30 years. He is Winner of the Innovations in Travel ‘Best Travel Influencer’ Award from WIRED magazine. In addition to other awards, the blog has also been voted “one of the world’s best travel blogs” and “best for luxury” by The Daily Telegraph.

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One Comment

  1. Great share! Middle east is considered one of the best holiday destinations in the whole world. And I love traveling to many of its tourist spots. Will be heading to Dubai by the end of the month and can’t wait to visit One&Only Royal Mirage.

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