It is with deep regret that I have to inform you all that the rumours are not true.
Whoever told you that The Atlantis was a great place to stay is a liar!!!!!!!!!!!!
Because it is SO MUCH MORE than that……..
It is a magical, breath taking, ridiculously buzzy, exciting, amazing and BEYOND FUN place to stay!!!!!!!
Okay I have a confession to make, so please promise not to judge me.
Ever since I watched Mary Kate and Ashleys ‘Holiday in the Sun’ at eight years old, I vowed to myself that one day I would visit that magical pink stunning palace of dreams.
(Hey you promised you wasn’t going to laugh. So bitchy!!!)
But honestly, I couldn’t get that hotel out of my head for years and years. I fell under their spell hook, line and sinker.
And guys, dreams really do come true.
Whilst I may not have been lucky enough to yet experience visiting the Bahamas, when Dubai opened its replicate version of the mythical ‘Lost City’ in 2008 I just KNEW I had to visit. And so I did. Many a time.
I’ve always told myself never to go to the same place twice. Without sounding like the biggest cringe bag .. it’s a big old world out there with so much to see and explore.
But I honestly had to bend my rules as last summer we went back to the magical palace for a second time and I just HAVE to tell you all about it.
Firstly I need to apologise for not getting this post up sooner. My ‘Summers Holiyay’ blog was actually launched a few months after our incredible visit, and this post has been sitting in my draft folder for a long old time. But since I have spent my last few posts telling you all about my most recent Dubai adventures at The One & Only Royal Mirage, this just felt like the perfect time to upload it.
And here is a fun fact for you all- during my many afternoon walks up and down the Atlantis Beach in the summer of 2018, I would tell the hubs that it was my biggest dream to launch a blog one day. He told me there was no time like the present and to follow my dreams. And it was there and then on The Atlantis’s golden sandy beach that my ideas for Summers Holiyay came to life. And now you lot are stuck with me, soz! So this hotel will always hold the most special place in my heart alone for this reason.
(Please note this cheese on toast photo- and all photos on this blog- were taken before I became a ‘blogger’ who has learnt how to do staged and awkward photos for the purposes of the Gram. Instead this is the real, unflattering version of me but I adore how happy I look here).
THE STORY OF ATLANTIS
Now for those of you who are unfamiliar with this incredible hotel (huns have you been living under a rock?) let me tell you the story behind its iconic architecture and design. The hotel follows the theme of Atlantis’s ‘Lost City’ which sank into the ocean around 9,600 B.C and every corner you turn in the hotel you can feel the magic of this story. You truly feel as though you are living in the sea, in the depths of the long lost kingdom. Pure magic.
Besides the breathtaking exterior (which is even more insane and ridiculous in real life) there is an absolute magic that sweeps over you the moment you enter the Atlantis doors.
I would say the main attraction and most iconic feature of the hotel is the gigantic Lost Chambers Aquarium which is absolutely breath taking. Even after walking past the lagoon on a daily basis it never failed to astonish me. The story of Atlantis continues in this aquarium which holds over 65,000 marine animals including jelly fish, sting rays and HUGE SHARKS that would glide past you on your way to breakfast. It was totally out of this world. In 2013 (our first time at the hotel) we actually went scuba diving in the tank. I know. I was 23 and a rebel.
The hotel is so boujee that there is even a fine dining restaurant next to the lagoon where you can feast on divine food next to the sharks, AND, a honeymoon suite where your bed side view is inside the tank. Thats another one added to my bucket list then!!!!
Honestly, from the second I entered inside the Atlantis doors I was totally swept up into their wonderful world and now I want to tell you all about what I believe is one of the best hotels in the world to stay at.
“BUT ISN’T THE ATLANTIS JUST FOR KIDS?”
Firstly, can I just clear one thing up. When I was a Dubai virgin I asked lots of people for their advice on which hotel to choose as there is just so much choice and it is all very overwhelming for a first timer. We were given lot of opinions and people told us that in fact the Atlantis was very busy, manic and slightly more for kids. I was gutted.
However instead of taking this advice on board we totally ignored it and decided to do a total YOLO and book it.
Well you know what they say, always follow your gut. And thank goodness we did because this hotel was the total opposite of all those silly rumours. It was luxury, it was relaxing and it was simply perfect and I promise you, it is absolutely wonderful for a couples holiday.
WHERE IS THE ATLANTIS?
Dubai Dubai Dubai.. oh how I love you Dubai!
You lot all know by know that it is one of my favourite countries to visit for a beach holiday and I have already been three times. Yes I know it is ‘fake and man made’, but trust me once you go there you won’t ever look back. Dubai oozes luxury and class, whilst being one of the most fun party places in the world. Once you get over the fact the it’s not natural you will be swept up in the pure elegance and grandness of all the hotels and restaurants Dubai has to offer. It is a pure adults playground. I mean, it had me the minute I landed and walked underneath a crystal themed waterfall with diamanté chandeliers at the airport. Oh Dubai, its truly got Sammy Summers written all over it.
The Atlantis complex sits at the edge of The Palm which is a man made curved island by the sea. As you approach the iconic building from the airport you can spot it from a mile off. I got that feeling I used to get when I woke up on Christmas morning as a kid, that banging heart palpitation, your so excited your gonna explode feeling, this was going to be my new home for ten nights, hell bloody yeah!!
Upon entering the marine themed resort the first thing you will spot is the 15 million pounds central structure. No that wasn’t a typo. Yes it was 15 million. No I’m not okay.
Once you all get over the shock of how boujee and extra the reception area is you will be escorted to your room. We were led to our boudoir in the East Wing. (And if your not thinking of Beauty and the Beast right this minute then we can’t be friends).
At the time of us travelling in June 2018 the Atlantis were in the middle of their huge refurbishment, which to our luck was starting in the East Wing. This meant that we were one of the lucky first few to experience their stunning new Ocean Deluxe rooms. (I’m sure by now that they are near to finishing as it is over a whole year since our visit).
The minute the doors opened I fell in love and knew we were about to embark on the most dreamiest of stays. The new rooms have been designed so you feel as if you are sleeping in the ocean, which is very fitting to the theme of the Atlantis story.
With a cool fresh blue and electric turquoise colour scheme, opulent furniture and a gigantic bed the room truly felt pure luxury.
One of my favourite parts of the room was the bathroom, with it’s beautiful marble detail and bath tub of dreams which you can soak in whilst staring out to sea. It doesn’t get much better than that. And speaking of views, well they were to die for, have you ever seen a pool like it? Saying home sweet home had never felt so good.
(The views from our Ocean Deluxe Room- Palm facing- floor 8)
LAZY DAYS AT THE ATLANTIS
If you are wanting to be a total beach bum then lazy days at The Atlantis are beyond perfect. My daily routine would consist of soaking up every ray in sight whilst laying next to the Royal Pool, and jumping in for a dip every half an hour. The Royal Pool is just as divine as it sounds, with the width spanning across the majority of the outside area. It is HUGE and so relaxing. The edge of the pools also have seating areas built onto it, where it has been built in a way that feels as though it is an infinity pool, with the beach laying beneath you. I couldn’t decide what my favourite view was- the ocean or the overwhelming architecture of The Atlantis? It truly blew my mind every time I looked up.
The Royal Pool was mainly for adults, as there is another large buzzy pool around the corner that was perfect for kids and families. We did avoid this, as this wasn’t the vibe we wanted that holiday, but it just goes to show that there is something for everyone at the hotel.
The private beach at The Atlantis truly has the wow factor. Spanning over 700 meters, it is the perfect place to spend an afternoon walking along the golden crunchy sand whilst drinking cocktail themed drinks.
(A Summersholiyay tip for you all- Start your days off at the pool area and end them on the beach! Around 3pm as the sun starts to dip behind the huge Atlantis building it is the perfect time to soak up the rays on the beach where the sun will not be blocked).
FOOD GLORIOUS FOOD
One of the most appealing parts of the Atlantis is their huge diverse range of dining options. In fact there are over twenty restaurants and bars to choose from meaning there is something for everyone including the iconic NOBU, Celebrity themed restaurants from Gordon Ramsey and Giorgio Locatelli and a cuisine from every part of the world you can imagine. Now i’m the kind of person that thrives off a buzzy and vibrant atmosphere so for me this hotel was perfect, and I would get excited knowing that with so much choice, no evening would be the same.
But don’t let the number put you off if you only like small and intimate. The Atlantis really is such a huge complex that still has a wonderful way of still maintaining a very personal and cosy feel.
Whilst I could bang on about all of the twenty restaurants and bars we would be here till 2020 at this rate. But head on over to my Dubai food blog I wrote as there are a few stand out stars of the show that you MUST visit. And the amazing thing about this hotel is that you don’t actually need to be a hotel guest to enjoy the restaurants so even if your staying somewhere else I highly recommend that you visit and experience some of the delicious dining options.
There are also really stunning bars dotted around the hotel, each with a vibrant and personal colour scheme, and I liked to accidentally match to the decor. Oops.
One of our favourite things to do at night after dinner and drinks was walk outside by the pool and beach and look up towards the stunning Atlantis lit up at night. (And by the way it is still boiling at night so word of advice huns, don’t bother doing your hair cos ya know, hello humid Hagrid, frizzy lizzy and all that- you can thank me later) The hotel really is such a wow factor.
Another huge stand out feature of The Atlantis is the Aquaventure Water park which is based just beside the hotel. With over 30 slides, a divine lazy river and 500 meters of private beach this was truly one of my favourite days of the holiday. Hotel guests can visit the park for free as many times as they like, which in my eyes is such an amazing perk. The park is so much fun I honestly belly laughed my way through each slide, which eventually turned into losing my voice from all the screaming. HAVE YOU SEEN THE SIZE OF THE LEAP OF FAITH? Google it at your peril. And applaud me later.
Also- a new section of the water park opened just a few years ago, with a whole load of new and exciting slides to try if you dare! Honestly, this water park is perfect for couples and families and I’m already counting down the days till I get to visit it again. My advice would be to go there first thing before it gets super busy and spend the whole morning screaming your way through the park. Then reward yourselves with a late lunch back at the hotel with afternoon recovering on the beach.
So there we have it. I hope I have proved to you just how magical The Atlantis is. I truly believe that once you enter the doors of the palace, you will never ever need to leave. And they will have to drag you back to the airport kicking and screaming.
Staying at The Atlantis was a totally different holiday and feel to my most recent stay at the One & Only Royal Mirage and I feel so lucky that I have got to experience both hotels. They were both so wonderful in their own unique ways. I would say that if you are after a huge buzz, constant entertainment, unbelievable food and scenery and a whole load of fun then The Atlantis is perfect for you.
However you choose to stay at The Atlantis, whether this is with your other half, your family, or your group of friends, I promise that you will have the time of your life and I truly believe that everybody should experience a slice of The Atlantis magic at least once in their life!
Ive now come to the end of my Dubai Diaries (sob) and I hope you have enjoyed them as much as I have writing them and hopefully inspired you to visit the Arabian city of dreams!
Loads of love as always,
You can read my other Dubai posts here: