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Staycation Spotlight: The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort

Are you searching for timeless beachfront luxury in Abu Dhabi? Look no further than The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort for a five-star summer staycay.

Saadiyat Island is arguably the jewel in the crown of the UAE capital and it’s amazing how a quick drive out of the city centre leads to this stunning island which feels like you’re a world away from the busy city streets. The island has also become the cultural heart of Abu Dhabi, with The Louvre now open and plans for more museums, including the Guggenheim and Sheikh Zayed National Museum. But there is one idyllic place on the island that’s always been there and keeps people coming back for more, of course, we’re talking about the pristine white sand beach sitting right in front of The. St Regis Saadiyat Island Resort. 

This popular Abu Dhabi hotel has become a true favourite whether you’re visiting for a weekend staycation, Friday brunch, spa day or one of the many dining options available.

The St. Regis Saadiyat

The hotel is what you would expect from the St. Regis brand – elegant, eternal and super luxurious. It has an impressive resort feel that continues to wow you even on repeat visits. The hotel represents care-free resort living at its very best and features 377 tastefully designed rooms and suites, overlooking either the beautiful beach or the Saadiyat Beach Golf Club. We’re staying in a St. Regis Guest Room with a king bed and sea view and this room has a serious wow factor, leaning into the beachfront locale with simple and natural decor. There is a large balcony visible through sliding glass doors and floor-to-ceiling windows, with a chaise lounge and beautiful views of the incandescent turquoise Gulf.

The room is large with an open-plan living area, with a mix of natural material and decor and a neutral palette of cool browns, creams, and sand complemented by nuanced coral, turquoise, and red accents. Pops of colour also appear in the modern, local artwork that adorns the walls. There is also a large workspace and 42-inch flat-screen television with cable channels and complimentary Wi-Fi, so should you be working while you are here, it is the perfect set-up. Meanwhile, a fully equipped refreshment centre and around-the-clock St. Regis Butler ensure guests have everything they need. 

The enormous white marble bathroom with entirely separate his and her sink areas, a giant rain shower and freestanding bath is absolute decadence. The hotel also has its own branded bath and shower products and the big fluffy robes will have you feeling comfy in no time.

There are many restaurants in the hotel, including Buddha-Bar Beach, Manhattan Lounge, Olea, Sontaya, The Drawing Room, and The Signature 3, so you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to culinary options. Buddha-Bar Beach has already made a mark in the capital. They’ve cleverly brought the classic Buddha-Bar vibe and menu to Abu Dhabi with an absolutely stunning beachfront venue. It overlooks Saadiyat beach and has a beautiful relaxed vibe yet is uber chic and cool.

Sontaya is also a fabulous option and this restaurant is always popular for a special evening to romance a loved one or for a special occasion meal. It’s set amongst a series of floating pavilions, which gives a feeling of calm and some serious vacation vibes. The large floating pathway that leads to the restaurant’s front door provides a glimpse of the decor to come. Large stone walls against smooth pools of water set the scene for a memorable dining experience. The inside area of the restaurant is just as pretty with lots of light and cute, booth-like seating and sleek, contemporary decor. Sontaya means ‘sunset’ in Thai and trust us, there is no better place to watch the sunset than the terrace here. The beautiful outdoor space is relaxed and ambient with picturesque views.

Our most recent visit coincided with Olea’s new seafood night, which takes place on Thursday and Friday evenings. The bountiful iced seafood display features spider crabs, king prawns and lobster, while further cold options include colourful sushi, fresh salads and tasty terrines. From the hot buffet, options include fresh fish grilled to your preference, alongside paella, an Arabic rotisserie station and pizzas.

While luxurious accommodations and destination dining are definite high points of a stay at The St. Regis Saadiyat Island, the main draw of this particular hotel are the pristine stretch of coastline, the water sports and the swimming pools. The resort also has several swimming pools, including a tranquil adults-only pool at the hotel’s west wing. Flanked by slender palm trees, the pool area features in-water sun loungers, a courtyard style sun terrace and jacuzzis that offer a pleasant addition to what is otherwise a very family-friendly beach resort. 

The St. Regis Saadiyat

The expansive infinity style family pool features a wealth of sunbeds and cabanas for lounging. At the same time, the complimentary ice creams and iced water bottles certainly offer some pleasant respite from the soaring summer temperatures. Children will enjoy the Sandcastle Club with indoor and outdoor activities set around a sandy cove that will enliven children’s imaginations with pirate style adventures, plus there’s direct access to its own private beach. A natural habitat for dolphins and turtles, the Blue Flag certified beach offers a luxurious escape that brings guests back to nature.

The St. Regis Saadiyat

With its terracotta roofs and dune-coloured facade, The St. Regis Saadiyat Island looks like an elaborate sandcastle sprawling across the Saadiyat shoreline. The truly serene resort and will cater to your every need, where swaying palm trees and poolside cocktails set the pace for relaxation and recuperation.

GO: Visit www. stregissaadiyatisland.com for more information.

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David Tapley - Editor-in-Chief
As editor-in-chief of the region’s most fiercely local lifestyle publication, David is a self-proclaimed hip-hop aficionado, championing all things food, travel, street art, and streetwear across the United Arab Emirates and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

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