I do not know who said about our Gulf countries,”It’s a barren desert, but it’s our desert.”I think the thought to change the perception of this extended desert came from this statement. There is a breathtaking beauty in the desert: its color, the flat land, and silky sand dunes.
Six Senses Zighy Bay
My first experience with desert resorts wasin the city of Musandam, located between Oman and the UAE;specifically,at Six Senses Zighy Baywhich is one of the jewels of desert tourism. It is located on the banks of Zighy Bay which was occupied by the Omani village a long time ago. The resort is protected from the back by a series of great red mountains bounded by the sea from the front which give an overwhelming sense of isolation and total immersion in the desert with privacy and beauty. The design philosophy of the resort relieson the surrounding nature such as sand, wood, stone, and pottery. The reader would think it’s an abstinent luxury. Not at all;it’s seven-star luxury: rooms, luxury bathrobes, best cottonbed sheets, swimming pool in each villa and a bathtub made of one-piece engraved stone.
Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa
There are two resorts in Dubai that can be called as “middle of nothing” on the map. One of them is Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spalocated about an hour from Dubai International Airport; situated in the heart of the desert and nestled in the dunes of Dubai. Bab Al Shams offers guests one of its kind traditional desert experience, offering seven-star service and first class luxury.
Banyan Tree Al Wadi
The second resort is Banyan Tree Al Wadi located in the middle of nowhere; just an hour’s drive between Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah. It deserves the title of the first desert resort and spa to offer an all-pool villa concept with integrated facilities comprising Asian-inspired hydrotherapy spa facilities, and a dedicated nature reserve where visitors can interact with Arabian Gazelles and Oryx. It’s a jewel amidst the endless sandscape. The resort is set against the magnificent Al Hajjar Mountains, offering a surreal aura of desert romance.
Degrees of luxury accommodation in Banyan Tree Al Wadi range from comfortable rooms with a stunning design, to high-end villas made of wood with the exterior designed to mimic a luxury tent.The villas are completely separated from the reception yard. Each guest has a small villa, bathroom and a private swimming pool. The resort features an infinity swimming pool overlooking the red desert and sand dunes.
The Rainforest is a complete hydrothermal experience, with a trail of 16 state-of-the-art hydrothermal therapies and facilities, each designed to soothe and revitalize different parts of the body. The guest starts with varied rain shower experiences designed to increase or reduce body temperature. Then one walks to aromatic steam chambers and Bucket Drench Shower, then rub fresh ice on the body. After all the stations one reaches a pool that consists of six different acupressure jet stations. It received the World Spa & Wellness Awards 2014 for Destination Spa of the Year (Middle East & Africa).
The resort also offers barbecue evenings that take diners to another world, with a starry sky, Arabic music, and the finest fresh meat and appetizers.
Out of the Box
Usually the residents of the Gulf region and the Arab desert countries head to Europe, East Asia, and America to enjoy nature and beautiful surroundings. There is a justified belief that the desert cannot give us anything! But Six Senses Zighy Bay, Bab Al Shams, and Banyan Tree Al Wadi prove that there is unmatched beauty in the desert.