Every year we spent a few staycations away from home but this would be a special one. Simply because we were spending a joyful staycation in a 528 sqm designer luxury villa hidden inside a 160 acre estate of Desert Palm Per Aquum consisting of unbelievable lush green fields, Horse farms, Polo fields, lawns, stables, Horses, Palm trees, villa residences and activities that set a perfect stage for a gateway like no other. You would want to live inside this man made Arabian heaven forever.
We landed at Desert Palm Per Aquum Estate in the afternoon on a hot day which was only a 20 mins drive from Deira, Dubai. At the reception of the hotel you find a horse sculpture purely depicting that the whole estate is revolving around horses and surely can be called a polo estate. As you can see in the above picture, the climate was so hot that I just couldn’t pose long enough sitting on the fancy rocking chair as those seats were burning hot. Nevertheless we got inside and like as if they heard us we were immediately invited inside the hotel with a nice tasting fresh juice and wet towels. It was also during this time they found out that it was my Birthday on this day as I handed over my Emirates ID during checkin, and they as a kind gesture planned a special delivery for me in our private villa at the estate.
The Desert Palm was inaugurated by her Highness Princess Haya Bint Al Hussain(wife of his Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai) in 2008. Funny for 8 years I didn’t realize this estate ever existed. It surely is a hidden gem in the desert. The main reception is also connected to one of the main Polo fields where most of you will end up watching a polo game if you were to avail their afternoon tea package which currently is not available for the summer.
After a successful check-in at the reception we were then taken to our Private Pool residence villa. Ofcourse, we had no clue where to find our villa inside the 160 acre estate and so surely we were driven in a buggy to our new staycation villa which also had a private parking that could accommodate 2 cars. Talking about private, the villa also came with a private pool as well as a private garden with 2 Entrances from either sides of the villa.
In the living room was our surprise waiting. A long platter of colorful desserts from little muffins, eclairs, tarts, pastries. There was also a treasure box next to it filled with Turkish delights. As we were rejoicing the scrumptious treat in comes a door bell and it turned out to be a generous surprise birthday cake presented to us by the Hotel. It was an opera cake surrounded by Macaroons and candle ready to light. It was an overwhelming warm welcome into our stay and we were just enjoying every bit of our moment.
The pool residence villa at Desert Palm is a 2 bedroom villa with an additional study room which could also be converted to a third bedroom, there was a private pool, private garden, a fully fitted kitchen, ensuite bathroom, Living and dining room. A boutique 528sqm villa with modern luxury amenities and a high tech experience. So much that we just loved from the first minute we stepped in and never wanted to step out of this luxury.
It’s amazing to see they’ve not compromised on quality and have purchased the best possible brands for their villas. The villa had phones in every room including all the bathrooms and all of them were Bang & Olufsen. Their sound system and multimedia players such as DVD were all Bang & Olufsen. This was a proof of their commitment to serving the best quality products, service and a true class to luxury with no compromise. The dish washer, fridge and the oven were all from a reputed brand.
The kitchen was fully loaded which included a fridge, dish washer, cooking range, coffee machine with complimentary capsules good enough to last for many days. They had plenty of glasses and plates in the cabinets. The Fridge was loaded with all kinds of drinks and the non alcoholic drinks were absolutely free as a party of daily refreshments.
The master bed was as luxurious as possible, a super king and a leather bed. The quilt was really thick and comfy that we just found it too comfortable to come out of it in the morning. The carpet around the bed was the only carpet found inside the villa to sooth your bare feet from the cold marble flooring. There was a SONY LCD for you to watch entertainment from the master bed. All rooms had balconies which was connected to the garden, so you open the balcony and you land in your private garden. Dine in menu is available. You can order anything and they deliver to your doorstep.
Swimming in your private pool was special. You could have your own privacy and the best part was it had everything which included a sundeck, rainshower, gazebo. The hotel was kind enough to provide us swimming tubes of all shapes and sizes and kids loved them. One point I’d like to highlight that it wasn’t kids friendly swimming pool. This wasn’t a public swimming pool so there wasn’t any life guard either and you had to be the lifeguard for your family 🙂 In the night the pool is well lit to enjoy a swim.
The bathrooms were as elegant as it can get. The attached bathroom inside the Master bedroom even though it was glass wall had covered curtains for privacy when needed. The rain shower inside the master bathroom was also pretty cool with a very high ceiling where natural light pours in the morning from top of the shower room. The wash basins in the guest and secondary room were really fancy. There were lot of ready to use towels already arranged in the bathrooms.
In the evening around 05:00pm a buggy came to pick us up at our villa to give us a show around of the estate. By the way, we traveled from our villa to anywhere in the estate with the help of buggy service. Every time we needed to go anywhere we would call the reception and the buggy would be sent to transport us. When you are in an estate filled with trees, horses, peacocks an open ride such as a buggy is always enjoyable. So the buggy ride was a fun ride for us and the kids.
The Desert Palm has five to six massive polo fields. Lot of watering is required. I could see these green fields being watered religiously during the night as well. During the summer, the horses are let out in open fields after 04:00pm only for them to run around and flex their muscles. Polo games are currently not happening this season due to the souring heat. It’s good time to be here after the summers when horses spent more time outside.
If the horses are not in the green fields then they should be in their stables. They were plenty of stables inside the estate belonging to different groups. Some of their stables also had air condition for cooling. Some of the fans blowing to the horses had water connected to them which blow out cool air to the horses. They do everything to take good care of the horses. Flies are one of the biggest irritation to the horses when in their stables especially when they stick next to their eyes. Hence to overcome this some horses were seen wearing a netted mask. Horses in their stables could be seen getting groomed, fed etc. We also had the opportunity to pat the horses and for additional 20 dhs you also get to ride the horses.
By the way, this resort is also home to residences. Many villas are residence villas who live here all year and some of them have their own horses. Not all horses you see belong to the resort. Some of them are owned by private owners. We found many private owners lazing around the estate with their horses. It should be fantastic to be on a horse here. Many top Polo players also bring their own horses and have their special stables and preparation for the sport. This is an ideal destination for those who own a horse or even love a horse. They also have their own Polo riding school which gives you private lessons on world class horses by world class trainers. You can read more about the Desert Palm Riding school here.
It’s interesting on our way we not just find horses but also peacocks and peahens. Sometimes lot of birds just stretched across their wide lush green fields. The plantation architect behind some of their plants is from India so naturally I saw many familiar trees grown in India.
By the time we were done given a show around of the estate we had passed sunset hungry for dinner. Epicure is their all day dining restaurant. Probably the master kitchen of Desert Palm. It’s international, they do have good set of dishes to offer. Infact we were very much impressed by the food offered at Epicure. The only one area they need to improve would be their smoothies, it was no where close to what we expected.
The dishes like you see in the picture has been mesmerizing. Kudos to Epicure for being able to be bring out the best flavours from all their different dishes. If you are at Epicure I highly recommend to try their homemade burgers. We tried the mini sliders and it was just mouth watering from the minute it was placed on our table beginning with the presentation and it was pure joy having each one of those different kind of mini burgers(crab, lamb, chicken). The fries were just thick and fresh like how we loved it. The pan fried salmon was yummy. From the hot arabic starters I just loved those hot mezzeh with stuffed cheese like the cheese rolls and cheese sambousek. The thick 120 day aged steak was juicy and irresistible. Kofta was the best from the Arabic mixed grill.
My wife insisted that we try their Eton Mess from the desserts menu. We haven’t come across Eton Mess very often. I am so glad we did and we fought for our share of the beautiful dessert. It was very pretty and deadly at the same time. The hot chocolate fondant was similar to other fondants we’ve eaten. It was good but nothing different. The usual combination of hot chocolate and cold ice cream can only win. Over all our dinner has been outstanding at Epicure, we definitely would come back to the resort just to have a bite once again. Click here to download their dinner menu.
In the morning, I took a buggy from our villa to the gym. They had a line up of complimentary bikes of different sizes. The only problem being the temperature as it was a little hot in the morning that I could not ride as much as I wanted. Although I enjoyed exploring the estate along with my son who was also given a helmet for safety, had to eventually come back to quickly to save ourselves from the heat. The bicycles were of good quality and enjoyed cycling them. The gymnasium faces the big green polo field with a stretch of Tread mills that also has entertainment like video/radio, LED with TV channels, ipod docking stations connected to the each equipment. They had an interesting equipment which would show what type of exercise needs to be done to develop a muscle at a particular area of your body. They also had group classes for 70 AED. One class in the morning and one class in the evening. Click here to know more about their fitness Center.
Besides horse activities, this would be an ideal place for that special occasion like a wedding or engagement party. They have all kinds of arrangement for such events, they have planned it so well that everything feels natural. You would never feel like you are spending your time in the desert. They have put an outstanding effort to convert the desert into a green nature to such an extent even by importing 300 year old Olive trees just to make the occasions feel special. Even though the climate doesn’t allow any olives to grow on them, it stays tall a living Olive tree. Click here to know more about Wedding and Meeting facilities.
Lime Spa is where you pamper yourself at Desert Palm Per Aquum. They have a long list of massages and other services. This was the first time I was given a gelato before the start of a massage.They prepped me really well with a nice feet massage even before the actual massage started. I remember salt and lime being used during my feet massage. I can’t forget the comfort and relaxation during my hour at Lime Spa. Lima spa customers have access to all their facilities which includes sauna, steam, an ice room etc. Click here to know more about Lime Spa.
We surely had a delightful breakfast at Desert Palm. The special complimentary drink which was from their menu called antioxidants – a mix punch of carrot, orange, pineapple, beetroot,ginger was so good that I had to ask for another glass. The Desert Palm coffee will have your eyes wide open the moment you see it on your table as it is one hell of a good looking coffee.
Desert Palm have some promising items on their breakfast menu. The Egg en cocotte was one of a kind, probably the best egg dish I’ve had for breakfast in a long time. Something really different and full of flavour. The second best favourite would be their mind blowing Granola that came along with their continental breakfast. The hash brown which was just a side was crispy, hot and tasted fresh from the oven. Although the french toast was the prettiest looking item for breakfast on our table, it didn’t have the bells and whistles to win over other breakfast dishes. On an honest note, I think they need to re look into their recipe for French toast. The homemade croissants were fresh, crispy, light and just perfect to give it an A+. Click here to download their breakfast menu.
I think I’ve written enough on our Desert Palm staycation experience. Maybe it’s time you have a first hand look at them. You can start by visiting their website. Click here to visit the official page of Desert Palm Per Aquum. Click pictures to see them in full screen view: