Dubai’s hotel scene has undergone a seismic shift over the last decade. Where once there was only five-star opulence or a characterless Ibis, with very little in between, now there is a growing segment of not only affordable hotels but also all-inclusive options, including the new four-star Riu Dubai, committed to offering pocket-friendly family holidays in redeveloped Deira. Fun facilities include water parks, spas for both big and little guests, and a bounty of colourful restaurants sure to sate even the fussiest of diners, with cuisines ranging from Thai to Lebanese.
Elsewhere, you’ll find an all-inclusive Rixos on one of Dubai’s most sought-after tourist hubs, Palm Jumeirah; here the highlights are a trip to the authentically Turkish hammam and sundowners with Arabian Sea views. And if it is opulence you desire, there are few more decadent escapes than Al Maha, nestled in Dubai’s majestic dunes. Here are the best all-inclusive hotels in Dubai.
JA Palm Tree Court
A stylish all-suite resort set on a pristine beach with lush gardens, multiple restaurants and a raft of activities. It manages to be both family-friendly and quiet enough for couples, thanks to an adults-only pool and spacious lawn by the beach. It’s an all-encompassing resort with four pools, squash and badminton courts, beach volleyball, a shooting range, horse riding stables, mini-golf and exceptional coaches at both its nine-hole golf course with driving range and four-court tennis academy, plus a fantastic watersports and dive centre. The spa is also excellent, with skilled therapists, wet areas and hammam.
Read the full review: JA Palm Tree Court
• The best hotels in Dubai
JA Beach Hotel
This family-friendly resort feels a world away from the hubbub of Dubai, yet it’s just 20 minutes’ drive to malls and theme parks. Still, with private beach, pools and activities galore, it’s better suited to a seaside break than a base for exploring the city. There are endless things to do – many of them free – including tennis, squash, badminton and table tennis, as well as a Wibit inflatable water park and fantastic watersports centre with experienced staff offering sailing, SUP, water-skiing and more. There are 12 bars and restaurants to choose from too.
Read the full review: JA Jebel Ali Beach Hotel
Hotel Riu Dubai
Deira Islands beachfront is a new development near ‘Old Dubai’, a neighbourhood by Dubai Creek, cherished for its historical treasures, including old wooden abra boat taxis that ferry visitors between Deira and Bur Dubai, and for its fabulously affordable, authentic, family-run restaurants established by the emirate’s early settlers. Four-star, 750-room Hotel Riu Dubai – the region’s first outpost of Mallorca-founded hospitality brand – brings an additional nine restaurants and bars to Deira Islands, including two swim-up watering holes. While grown-ups can kick back in the spa, gym and a choice of three pools, young guests are catered for with their own pool, a kids’ club, a playground and Splash Water World water park.
Rixos The Palm Dubai Hotel & Suites
This is one of the best all-inclusive hotels in Dubai – set amid mature gardens on a secluded spot of Palm Jumeirah – the resort scores big for its fabulous kids’ club, authentic Turkish hammam and great restaurants. It’s well-suited to both families and couples. Among the four pools, there’s one exclusively for adults and a separate kids’ pool, The wealth of facilities includes a water sports centre with motorised and non-motorised water sports, plus basketball and tennis courts. There are three restaurants and half a dozen bars and lounges. Make a beeline for Toro Loco for steak, L’Olivo for pasta and Aqua & More for seafood. Here, crab thermidor is covered under the all-inclusive deal.
Read the full review: Rixos The Palm Dubai Hotel & Suites
Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa
Al Maha was the UAE’s first desert escape and while there are now a handful of heavenly retreats set amidst the dunes, this romantic eco-friendly resort still remains its most seductive. It is best suited to honeymooners or those looking for alone time, along with very close friends. The resort has one restaurant Al Diwaan and operates on an all-inclusive basis, which includes a buffet and à la carte breakfast, a three-course lunch and a five-course dinner, or you can order from the room service menu to your villa. Guests can also help themselves to coffee and afternoon tea treats such as scones, pastries and macarons at Hajar Terrace Bar from 3pm to 5pm.
Read the full review: Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa
Frequently asked questions
What is the most romantic all-inclusive hotel in Dubai?
There are plenty of romantic hotels in Dubai, but one of the most seductive all-inclusive properties is probably the Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa, take a look at our description of it in this article or read the full review.
Is it better to go full board or all-inclusive in Dubai?
Most all-inclusive hotels also offer full-board, which is a notch down and typically means that your breakfast, lunch and dinner are wrapped up in the cost of your room rate (the all-inclusive packages usually include all soft drinks and alcoholic bevarages plus other extras that vary from property to property). Certainly, if you don’t drink alcohol then a full board package would probably be more cost effective. There are local areas where very good value food and drink can be found – compared to the more expensive five-star hotels. The Pointe (a marina located on The Palm) is a great option for eating and drinking.
Contributions by Sarah Hedley Hymers, Lara Brunt & Jenny Johnson
Rates above are guide prices per person per night, please note that all-inclusive packages can differ across hotels. Please check the hotel’s websites for further information on what’s included.