White glove service awaited us. The instant the car stopped, my door opened and a gentleman gave me a wide smile and said “Welcome to St. Regis Abu Dhabi”. Chandeliers sparkle from two-stories above, sitting areas surround a giant fresh floral bouquet, inviting guests into timeless elegance that continues the St. Regis tradition.
St. Regis Abu Dhabi just opened its doors a few months ago to 283 exquisite rooms and grand suites, 8 restaurants, a spa, 2 fitness centers, a private beach, and a rooftop swimming pool that overlooks the Corniche stretch. The décor is opulent, and service is impeccable and professional. Centrally located in the iconic Nation Towers, guests are close to Abu Dhabi attractions, corporate headquarters, embassies, and shopping malls.
Our Superior Room opened up to spectacular views of the Etihad Towers and beyond. Gold silk curtains, plush beds, crown molding, wool carpet, dark wood work desk, a spacious bathroom, crystal chandeliers, and the Arabic refined décor drew us into our new home. We delighted tasting the welcome tray of Arabic sweets that were decorated with rose petals, pistachios and sesame seeds.
As we savored each bite of our sweets, our personal butlers introduced themselves. Wido Evert Kijne and Myo Min, reassured us, “From a forgotten travel item, to anything that needs pressing, to a favorite book, or gift for a loved one, no request is too small or unattainable no matter the hour of the day. I’m here for you.” For over 100 years, St. Regis honors the importance of the personal butler experience, a tradition that guests find invaluable.
Carmen Ortiz, Director of Marketing, gave us a tour of St. Regis Abu Dhabi, as we followed her through the St. Regis bar through the lobby, and some of the largest ballrooms we’ve ever seen. She highlighted, “John Jacob Astor IV, built the original St. Regis Hotel in New York as the finest expression of art and architecture. This timeless blend of innovation and tradition are the foundation of St. Regis Hotels. Uncompromised living is the bedrock of St. Regis.”
Throughout our tour, we noticed cherished St. Regis traditions such as fresh flowers, sitting areas for afternoon tea. Our tour included the gorgeous Al Manhal Suite with floor to ceiling windows with panoramic views of Abu Dhabi. Carmen opened the door to the Suite and noted, “Exclusive in every way, our 39th floor Al Manhal Suite greets guests with a water-jet cut stone medallion of white carrara marble and limestone in three delicate shades of grey. A crystal chandelier illuminates the path to the living room.”
She continued to walk us through the spacious Suite, and my eyes followed the smooth marble, and studied every exquisite detail in this Suite. The semi-precious stones, mother of pearl bed headboard, crisp white linens, jewel-hued silk throw pillows, walnut wood floors, hand-tufted carpet, elaborate mosaics and a chandelier in the bathroom!
After our tour, we were ready to experience the Rémede Spa, a serene sanctuary with a staff ready to pamper you with customized therapies, and champagne, truffles and luxurious throw blankets. There are 11 treatment rooms where you can choose from the trademark Remède or Elemis therapies to locally inspired treatments. After your treatment, enjoy a nourishing menu of refreshing juices and tonics, herbal elixirs, tea and coffee, and light bites in the relaxation rooms.
If you’re craving European or Arabic food, Michelin-starred British chef Gary Rhodes offers culinary delights at modern styled Rhodes 44. We shared a memorable meal at Villa Toscana, an Italian restaurant in St. Regis. We sampled the scrumptious homemade lobster raviolis created by Chef Stefano Viola. Manager Marco Di Pasquale and Chef Viola, present authentic dishes from Tuscany to Umbria to Emilia-Romagna, with the finest of ingredients like white truffles from San Giovanni Dasso and Alba, and always some warm pane di campagna (country bread).
St. Regis is known for its enduring legacy of subtle details, tailored gestures, genuine warmth. St. Regis Abu Dhabi takes this to another level with Arabian grandeur.
By: Patricia Stone, a travel writer and consultant for www.GlobalAdventuress.com
Acknowledgements: We would like to thank St. Regis Abu Dhabi for hosting us during our stay in Abu Dhabi. Also, a special thanks to EET Tours, www.eet.ae , who provided us with transportation, and a private tour of Abu Dhabi. Opinions in this article are our own.
To book a reservation at St. Regis Abu Dhabi, visit: www.stregis.com/abudhabi
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