This new kid on the block looks set to shake up Dubai’s hospitality scene.
The first-ever 25hours Hotel in the Middle East (and the first outside of Europe) is now open in Dubai, offering a curated list of things for guests to see and do. Overlooking the soon-to-open Museum of the Future and situated a stone’s throw away from DIFC, 25hours Hotel One Central houses 434 rooms and suites that seamlessly blend nomadic yet contemporary design elements. Here, guests can experience unparalleled gastronomy and eclectic experiences, with the ancient traditions of Bedouins carried into modern-day Dubai for a stay like no other.
Guests enter into the lobby beneath a neon sign that reads “come as you are” and are soon greeted by the ‘Fountain of Tales’, an extensive library with seating and cascading bookshelves featuring over 5,000 books. Looking upwards, we’re immediately taken aback by a stunning piece of art titled ‘Under the Same Sky’ inspired by the constellations and interpreted them from a humorous, light-hearted point of view.
All rooms and suites at the property serve as a relaxing oasis for urban nomads following a long day of exploring Dubai. Each sanctuary draws on local influences, featuring quirky design elements such as analogue telephones, typewriters and UE Boom Bluetooth speakers.
Our abode during our stay is the Farmstay Suite. Clocking in at a more than generous 50SQM, it’s the ideal choice for young families or those looking for something super spacious. The suite promotes a boho-chic feeling with a hammock and views over The Museum Of The Future. In comparison, the decor draws inspiration from the local culture, including floor tiles inlaid in the design of Arabic carpets, ornate wooden storage chests and shelves littered with trinkets such as binoculars and old postcards.
Bathrooms are separated from the living area by tasselled curtains that resemble the fabric of a traditional Bedouin tent. This approach is less claustrophobic and provides freedom to the room, which is excellent for couples but may cause issues for friends or colleagues who may be sharing the accommodation. A free-standing tub is complemented by an elongated sink that stretches the entire length of the bathroom ending with two rainfall showers with glorious copper finishings round out the bathroom facilities.
Elsewhere, pillows are embroidered with fun phrases such as “let’s spend the night together” while the verbiage on door hangers includes “sometimes it’s better not to know…” and “the love birds have finally left, leaning into the playfulness that a stay at 25hours Hotel One Central is so keen to promote.
Those looking for fresh culinary concepts close to DIFC need to look no further. Nomad Day Bar, a partnership with Dubai-based Nightjar Coffee Roasters, offers cold brew on draught and the ideal co-working space for young professionals and digital nomads. Tucked away on a raised dais in the lobby, the area also features a calligraphy area where you can practice your penmanship or use one of the typewriters.
Tandoor Tina, the frivolous younger sister of London hotspot Tandoor Chop House, effortlessly fuses British and Northern Indian cuisine with dishes such as battered bhaji onion rings, bone marrow butter naan, Coronation chicken chaat and saag aloo “shepherds pie.” It’s fun, frivolous and their newly launched Saturday brunch is second to naan (see what we did there)!
Inspired by the German flagship that looks onto the monkey enclosures at Berlin zoo, Monkey Bar on the hotel’s sixth floor forgoes wildlife for striking views over The Museum of The Future. A place for drinking, dining and (post-covid) dancing, this rooftop bar completes the opening line-up, with Ernst Biergarten next on the agenda.
While 25hours Hotel One Central may appear to be a city hotel, the facilities belie expectations and lean more towards the leisure market, nomadic travellers, and those searching for fun. A rooftop swimming pool with cascading water jets is flanked by cosy cabanas and provides an urban sanctuary anchored around relaxation. Close by is the state-if-the-start fitness centre, a ladies’ salon by renowned celebrity hairdresser Wassim Steve and The Extra Hour Spa for bespoke wellness treatments.
On the first floor, guests have free rein of the central library, calligraphy stations, and Analogue Circus, where they can listen to a selection of vinyl records or watch old video cassettes. While down in the lobby, bulbous swinging chairs provide the perfect spot for an Instagram snap, an exchange counter lets you swap personal items, and a retail area sells 25Hours memorabilia such as coffee cups emblazoned with the words “khallas” or “yallah.”
Most remarkable is 25hours Hotel One Central’s ability to prioritise a feeling of inclusivity and adventure across an expectation-defying property that is anything but normal. The hotel embraces, celebrates and respectfully embeds itself in the local culture, from dioramas in the lifts reflecting desert scenes to the championing of homegrown establishments such as Nightjar Coffee and Cinema Akil, which will soon open its second independent cinema inside the hotel.
As the name suggests, there are not enough hours in one day to experience everything that this effortlessly cool abode has to offer. So for a truly unique stay in the thick of it, look no further.
GO: Visit www.25hours-hotels.com for more information.