Al Maha

DSCF0271_7085 (2) (1024x368)1) the view from our suite with its lovely plunge pool

After spending a few days in Dubai, we decided to wrap up the month touring with a three day visit to the stunning Al Maha. Al Maha is about an hour drive outside of Dubai set in United Arab Emirates first National Park, the Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve. It is tricky to get to so my advice would be to use the car service provided by the resort or have your driver call to get directions. After passing security at the entrance to the reserve you’ll drive over dunes amid oryx and gazelles for about 20 minutes before arriving at the resort and its 42 private suites, which are essentially permanent Bedouin tents each with its own plunge pool and complete with Bedouin artefacts.  Everything is included at Al Maha: your room; three meals a day which can be taken at its lovely restaurant or brought up to your tent suite; and a choice of 2 desert activities each day of your stay. We opted for the sundown camel trek each night (which includes champagne) and the falconry display each morning, which was really neat.

Al Maha is opulence defined and is utterly worth a visit should you find yourself in Dubai. In fact, I’d urge a direct trip to the resort and skip Dubai city altogether.  It is a perfect place to unwind, idle away hours reading or watching the wildlife poke around the watering hole or amid the resort pathways, and enjoy a spa or three. Service is discreet and exceptional and some guests even arrived by helicopter! Such is life in Dubai!

DSCN3053_7398 (2) (1024x768)2) arriving at Al Maha

DSCN2879_7059 (2) (1024x687)3) the lobby

DSCN2979_7231 (2) (1024x768)4) here’s our wee home during our stay

DSCN3014_7265 (2) (768x1024)5) complete with real keys

DSCN2816_6996 (2) (1024x765)6) the lounge

DSCN2817_6997 (2) (768x1024)7) the bathroom

DSCN2820_7000 (2) (1024x768)8) the work area with all sorts of greetings from their team

IMG_4155 (2) (1024x1024)9) fresh fruit awaited our arrival

DSCN2824_7004 (2) (1024x768)10) as did fresh goodies (including those Bateel dates on top left side which are OMG fabulous

DSC_0105_7106 (2) (1024x685)11) our room at night

DSCN2822_7002 (1024x768)12) and during the day

DSCN2825_7005 (2) (1024x768)13) G enjoys lunch with a view

DSC_0108_7109 (2) (1024x685)14) time for an evening skinny-dip?!

DSCN2989_7241 (2) (1024x768)15) with clothes though in the daylight

DSCN3051_7297 (2) (768x1024)16) champagne, but of course, pool side

DSCF0284_7110 (2) (1024x768)17) here is the Indian spread the team brought to the tent one evening

DSC_0112_7301 (2) (1024x685)18) what lovely moments at dawn

DSC_0124_7313 (2) (685x1024)19) and the sun starting to peek up over the mountains

DSC_0125_7314 (2) (1024x685)20) dawn!

DSC_0118_7307 (2) (1024x685)21) in lower right is the falconry area

DSC_0132_7321 (2) (1024x685)22) G heads down to watch the birds

DSC_0117_7306 (2) (1024x685)23) three await

DSC_0181_7370 (2) (1024x685)24) he looks hungry eh

DSC_0179_7368 (2) (1024x685)25) caught this one in flight

DSCN2921_7174 (2) (1024x768)26) so pretty!

DSCN2928_7181 (2) (1024x768)27) here is one coming in for the lure which has a wee bit of quail on it (with feathers)

DSC_0151_7340 (2) (1024x685)28) she got it!

DSC_0173_7362 (2) (1024x685)29) she did too!

DSCN2926_7179 (2) (1024x768)30) stunning!

DSC_0188_7377 (2) (1024x685)31) gosh, no prey could survive those talons eh!

DSC_0203_7392 (2) (685x1024)32) we got a chance to hold the birds too

DSCN2971_7223 (2) (1024x768)33) G heads to the main pool

DSCN2972_7224 (2) (1024x768)34) time for a swim

DSCN2978_7230 (2) (1024x768)35) one of the many flowers in the compound

DSC_0205_7394 (2) (1024x685)36) and here you can see a gazelle wandering right on the path we walked down to get to main lobby

DSCN2974_7226 (2) (1024x768)37) and here is an Arabian oryx outside the front of our tent

DSCN3016_7267 (2) (728x1024)38) the restaurant

DSCN3017_7268 (2) (1024x768)39) served some damn fine food, for sure!

DSCN3018_7269 (2) (1024x768)40) I had a salad

DSC_0104_7105 (2) (1024x685)41) a camel trek heads out

DSCF0296_7122 (2) (1024x768)42) meet my camel

DSCN2844_7024 (2) (768x1024)43) I seem excited … this was my first camel ride ever

IMG_4157 (1024x765)44) the camel cam!

DSCN3034_7285 (2) (1024x768)45) we watched the sunset into the sand … it was SO magnificent

DSCN2851_7031 (2) (1024x768)46) G with champagne enjoys the sunset on one of the evenings

IMG_4156 (2) (1024x768)47) so breath-taking

DSCN3039_7290 (2) (1024x768)48) on our last evening (I love this photo)

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