Blog Post | J Barter Travel |

Experience the unique blend of the modern and historic with a trip to Dubai.  


One of our travel experts, Linda O'Donovan, has shared all of her expert opinions on accommodation in Dubai following her most recent visit. If you are considering a trip to the Middle-East, why not read this travel blog post, to discover the best tips for travelling to Dubai, as part of a family holiday or as a couples retreat. 




I was lucky enough to get upgraded to Business Class on both journeys; however I have just something for you to keep in mind if booking business class. The aircraft I travelled on was a 747, and for business class, Emirates offer a lie back bed. However, if the person travelling next to you has their bed fully assembled, you need to climb over them to get out! I personally don’t think this would be good enough for a paying Business Class Client!  Other than that, I could not fault the airline in anyway; the service and food are excellent.


The Airport


The plane was waiting for clearance to land for over 40 mins in DXB due to the sheer scale of traffic; and the courtesy bus from the aircraft to the terminal took another 20 mins. Passing through customs and collecting bags took a further 45 mins, so don’t make immediate plans based on your landing time!

Checking in for the return journey was a very simple process, I would advise anybody travelling from DXB to familiarise themselves with their departure gate first before exploring duty-free or the food courts as there is quite distance between both.




Jumeriah Beach Hotel

This hotel was one of the first open on Jumeriah Beach, in 1997. I had the privilege of staying here for 2 nights, and my immediate impression when I entered the lobby area was; WOW! Welcome to Dubai! The check in process was completely seamless. I was given a room on the 10th Floor (OCEAN CLUB EXECUTIVE ROOM,) which is filled with tasteful style and décor. The room was also very spacious (50sq m), and had a fantastic full sea view, overlooking the Burj Al Arab and the Jumeriah Marina / Beach. However I had no balcony in my room, which is something that would have been nice! The hotel does offer balconies on their lower floor rooms, which is something to consider when booking if it is of importance. The Breakfast at this hotel was by far the best I have had, with such a large variety of choices, and all nationalities catered for. I was granted the opportunity to visit other hotel rooms, (ocean superior with or without balconies) and these rooms were also beautifully furnished. In my opinion, this hotel is well suited to families, as it offers an array of facilities including ‘Wild Wadi Water Park’ (complimentary), tennis/squash courts, a sport’s Club and a hotel run Kids Club Sinbad’s.’


Bonnington Jumeriah Lakes Towers

This hotel is located in the Jumeriah Beach Residence Area, which is within walking distance of the new Marina and to ‘The Walk.’ This hotel has over 40 floors and an Irish Bar called ‘McGettigan’s.

This hotel is recommended if you want to be close to the marina, beach, and mall of the Emirates while avoiding the very high prices of the marina and beach hotels. 



Sofitel Dubai Jumeirah Beach Hotel

The Hotel is located on ‘The Walk’ with a great variety of shops and restaurants in the surrounding area. This hotel is across the road from the Public Jumeriah Beach, which is an opulent area and a great choice for couples or honeymooners.


JA Ocean View Hotel

This hotel is also located on the ‘The Walk’ this is one of the only 4* hotels in the area.  I was so impressed by the location, style and quality of this hotel and you can get fantastic prices on this hotel, so it is definitely one to consider. 


Marina View Apartments

After visiting the all of the above hotels and the glamour of Dubai, this was a let-down, it’s rated a 4* but I would say a good 3* the rooms are quite large and comfortable, can sleep up to 6 people but the décor was not very appealing, furnished with very dark wood with lots of orange and lime green. The big selling point would be the location. It is near to the Dubai Marina area and is just a 5 minute walk from the Dubai Mall, 5 minutes from the Metro and about 15 minutes to the beach. 


Atlantis the Palm

This hotel is definitely designed with kids in mind, complete with an entertainment centre, an amusement park, an Aqua Venture waterpark, a shopping mall and the famous ‘The Lost Chambers Aquarium.’ I had lunch in this hotel also and the food was superb! It was an excellent choice, and the quality of this hotel, while not to my personal taste as it is so big you would need a map to find one end of the hotel to the next; you cannot take away from the fact that this hotel is impressive. This hotel is almost a tourist attraction, and is very busy with hundreds of people milling around all the time. The hotel lobby is like an airport!


Waldorf Astoria Dubai Palm Jumeriah

This hotel only opened in March 2015 and is the height of with extremely comfortable and well-positioned bedrooms overlooking the BURJ on one side and the beach the other. I would recommend this hotel for relaxation or honeymooners, but bear in mind, there is quite a distance from the city, and it can take between 45-90 minutes to get into downtown Dubai depending on traffic. This part of the Palm is still under development and as a result, there is a lot of construction and noise in the general still. 


The Hyatt Regency Dubai

I also stayed in this hotel which is located in Deira. The building from the outside is not as aesthetically pleasing as others, but check in was swift. The rooms were small but well-laid out. I would recommend this as a good business hotel, and the cruise port is not too far so it would also be a great base for a night pre/post cruise. 


The Hyatt Regency Creek Hotel

This stunning new five star Dubai hotel is conveniently located in Medi City between downtown and the old city (Deira.) The bedroom was extremely modern complete with complimentary Wi-Fi and motion activated night lamps are very practical!


Grand Hyatt Dubai

Situated near Sheikh Zayed Road, the Grand Hyatt Dubai offers beautifully landscaped grounds, complete with outdoor and indoor pools and 13 dining and entertainment venues. All of the rooms are decorated in a classical style with Arabic touches; for example, the hotel lobby has an indoor rainforest with multiple water features.




The Arabian Adventure Sundowner 

This was an unforgettable experience. I was picked up from my hotel late afternoon and we headed on to the desert, which was approximately a 40 minute drive outside of Dubai. After deflating the tyres, we went straight into dune bashing. It was intense and not for the faint hearted! The first stop was a falcon show, which was incredible. The second one was a spot where you can take beautiful pictures of the sun setting on the horizon, and finally we reached the Bedouin campsite. Shisha and camel ride options were available, and an entertaining Belly Dance show was also on offer. They switched off the lights for stargazing. This was fantastic to experience, and is a great tour that I highly recommend! An evening costs approximately €55 pp , which includes pick up/drop off , the Jeep Safari , food and entertainment.



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