Big Brunches, leisurely lunches and new restaurants all add up to a bumper long weekend in Dubai and Abu Dhabi
As UAE Union Day approaches many of us will be enjoying an extended weekend. Whether you’re looking to enjoy a culinary adventure, watch a show or immerse yourself in Emirati culture, these are the best things to enjoy over the long weekend.
Friday 1 December
Join the Union Day celebrations at Etihad Arena
Gather together and celebrate National pride with the Union Day celebrations at Etihad Arena. Experience a spectacular concert featuring some of the most beloved voices in the United Arab Emirates, with Hussain Al Jassmi, Balqees, and Ahlam sharing the stage. Immerse yourself in an enchanting evening filled with a harmonious blend of national anthems and chart-topping hits performed by these exceptional Emirati superstars. Friday, 1 December from 7pm. Tickets from AED 250.
GO: Visit https://abu-dhabi.platinumlist.net for tickets and more information.
Embark on a culinary adventure
Rove Hotels and Frying Pan Adventures have teamed up for a culinary tour that celebrates the rich history and culture of the UAE. The tour includes crossing the creek in an Abra, strolling through narrow alleys, interacting with local artisans, and savouring delicious delicacies. Expect to indulge in deep-fried street snacks, traditional regag bread, clay pot almond chai, and refreshing rose lemonade at the oldest cafeteria in the souk. Available on 30 November and 1 December. AED 175 per person.
GO: Visit www.fryingpanadventures.com for reservations and more information.
Watch the Teatro alla Scala Orchestra
Just in time for COP28, the Orchestra of the Teatro alla Scala in Milan will make its debut in the UAE with a gala concert at Dubai Opera. With a promise to protect the planet, A Concert for Tomorrow will bring forth work by Italian opera maestros Giuseppe Verdi, Giacomo Puccini and Pietro Mascagni. World-class soprano Aida Garifullina and acclaimed tenor Piero Pretti will also take to the stage under the guidance of Michele Gamba.
GO: Visit https://dubai.platinumlist.net for reservations and more information.
Saturday 2 December
Caffeinate with a Union Day discount
Experience the UAE Union Day festivities in the heart of Abu Dhabi at Courtyard by Marriott World Trade Center. Visit Fifth Street Cafe on Union Day to enjoy a charming oasis in the city’s centre, perfect for celebrating with friends and family. Immerse yourself in the joy of the occasion and enjoy fantastic coffee options with a 52% discount paired with your pastry.
GO: Call 05 267 4808 for reservations and more information.
See Becky Hill & MK live in Dubai
Emirates Dubai 7s is bringing sports and entertainment into town. The rugby tournament will feature cool concerts from British pop star Becky Hill and house music legend MK over the UAE Union Day weekend. Becky rose to fame through the reality TV show The Voice UK, and her hit songs include Crazy What Love Can Do, Lose Control, My Heart Goes and Remember. MK, real name Marc Kinchen, is a DJ from Detroit in the United States. He is best known for his deep house sounds, and his hit songs include 17, Back & Forth, Burning and One Night.
GO: Visit www.dubairugby7s.com for more information.
Have brunch at Fouquet’s Dubai
Pardon My Brunch is the latest culinary offering from the team at Fouquet’s Dubai, complete with stunning Burj Khalifa views and music from a live drummer, saxophonist and singer. The sharing style concept offers Alaskan King Crab Salad, Creamy Burrata, Smoked Scottish Salmon and Wagyu Beef Carpaccio to start. Main courses include Pan-fried Omani Prawns, Roasted Corn-fed Chicken, Potato Gnocchi and Wagyu Beef Skewers before delightful desserts of Apple tart, Basil and Chocolate soufflé and Pineapple carpaccio are served. Saturdays, from 12pm to 4pm. AED 350 (soft beverages), AED 500 (house beverages) and AED 650 (premium beverages).
GO: Visit www.fouquets-dubai.com for reservations and more information.
Sunday 3 December
Visit the Sheikh Zayed Heritage Festival
The Sheikh Zayed Heritage Festival is back every day this winter and runs until 9 March 2024. The festival features many events and performances, promising an extravaganza of entertainment and cultural experiences in the Al Wathba desert. Explore traditional crafts and soak in the vibes of UAE’s incredible culture at the Heritage Village before visiting the Children’s City, Fun Fair City, Glow Flower Garden, and House of Fear. Each evening culminates with a fireworks display, and the best part is that entry costs only AED 10.
GO: Visit https://zayedfestival.ae for more information.
Take a trip to the circus
Head to the garden city of Al Ain and prepare to be spellbound as The Great Circus of Europe pitches its tent at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium. This talented team is the cream of the crop when it comes to circus talent. We’re talking acrobats who can defy gravity, aerialists who will leave you breathless, contortionists who can twist their bodies in unimaginable ways, daredevils who take risks that’ll make your heart skip a beat, and of course, the clowns who’ll have you in stitches. Tickets for The Great Circus of Europe are available via Platinumlist for AED 75.
GO: Visit https://al-ain.platinumlist.net for tickets and more information.
Experience the Paparazzi Sunday Brunch
Parisian dining haven La Cantine du Faubourg is now home to the innovative Paparazzi Sunday Brunch. Expect live singers, resident DJs and a menu of burratina, and tomato Mediterranean salad, complemented by Japanese dishes from the adjacent Gohan. Expect chic Parisian sophistication and a fun way to wind down the weekend. Sundays, from 1pm to 6pm. AED 360 (soft beverages), AED 485 (house beverages) and AED 725 (sparkling).
GO: Visit https://lacantine.ae for reservations and more information.