Monday, 15 December 2014

Ras al-Khaimah: The Other Stunning Emirate

This recent trip to Dubai has made me think that this ultra-modern city has now become my third home. Since 2010, I have been visiting annually to see my family, and lately, friends who've been based there for nearly a decade.

These lovely friends, one of them I've known since the early 1990s, have been very generous and kind to whisk me away to a holiday resort in Ras al-Khaimah, one of the 7 Emirates.

Located in the northernnmost part of the UAE near the border of Oman and overlooking the Arabian Gulf, The Cove Rotana in Ras al-Khaimah is dubbed by locals as the Santorini of the Middle East.

My highschool friend Gale :)

The main reception of The Cove Rotana

No, it wasn't my birthday and this wasn't my birthday cake. The UAE was celebrating its 43rd Unification Anniversary in the first week of December. My friends and I managed to avoid the full booking as we stayed two days before the public holiday which stretched for five days.

Guests may help themselves with tea in the reception. The teapots reminded me of the Egyptian brass ones that my mother purchased in Saudi Arabia where I lived as a child.

Dates, of course, rather than biscuits or cookies

I love balconies (as some of my readers may know from previous travel posts) and hotels with balconies. . .

. . .especially when this is my view!

The water was rather cold but we braved it as we really came for the sea!

With Gale's partner, Cindy. On my Instagram account, I captioned it, "Whatever it was, it was indeed funny." We all had a good laugh during this trip.

I dislike shots of feet. So I made one.

I don't know of any beach sunset that wasn't mesmerising.

We headed back to our room while taking in the below sights. En route, we relaxed at the sauna and took a dip in the jacuzzi.

To the right, you'll see that some of the exclusive villas have their own swimming pools.

Dinner was served at Basilico, where the interiors stunned me more than the food. A trio serenaded us, and unsurprisingly rendered some Filipino songs. I used to sing for a living and know how distracting it can be for the audience when the lyrics are made up or muddled up. That was my only issue, which I suppose was quite serious, as I wanted to grab the mic off the singer and sing the songs myself.

My friend Cindy is a make-up artist in Dubai. As with any professional in her trade, a face is a canvas. That night, I went to dinner with full eyebrows that's a trademark of Arab women's everyday make-up. I've been trying to recreate the look myself, but my handiwork looks more like a Cray-Pas oil pastel disaster.

We called it a night afterwards, but not without me enjoying the tranquility of the balcony view.

We got up early the following day and headed to the beach first thing after breakfast, which by the way, was one of the best breakfast buffets I've ever had in my life. It was served in a room -- a ballroom, more appropriately, in terms of size, and everything you could think of for breakfast was available. If we weren't pressed for time, I could have had breakfast until the place closed, or until I'm told to leave because they have to clear out the tables for lunch.

It was overcast at 8 a.m., but the water temperature was bearable. Don't be fooled by the sun hiding though, as I still managed to get a tan! My colleagues were gushing about it, which I thought was only concentrated on my forehead area.

The bikini shot that nowadays can only be taken from a distance. I don't have photoshop skills and power to hide a multitude of acquired sins.

This boat isn't made for sailing. . .

. . .but for holiday-makers to put their feet up.

Spent the remaining time in this infinity pool before checking out. It's the same one seen from our balcony. The water wasn't temperature controlled as with the main pool, but it was relaxing nonetheless. I must say that I felt being purged of negative thoughts. 

I'd like to end 2014 in a reflective and contemplative mood, which this photo sums up.

Many thanks Gale and Cindy for a wonderful break, and thank you to The Cove Rotana Resort for a very warm welcome and lovely stay!

Sheikh Mohammad Bin Salem Road,
Al Kouf Bridge
Ras al-Khaimah
+971 7206 6000


  1. You look so beautiful! What an amazing place to escape to. If only I could teleport myself right now...

  2. This looks like such an amazing place, so beautiful. You look amazing too, stunning xx

  3. I’m so behind on my blog reading (and my posts!) after a long weekend away and all the Christmas preparations! Our friends were in RAK earlier this year and enjoyed a very relaxing break. This looks a very attractive hotel with the low rise buldings which have such a traditional arabic feel. The boat seating is so original too. Great photos especially the sunsets which are stunning!
    Thank you for your comment on my Dubai post. Nice of you think of me while you were there! We have been to the Park Hyatt several times but not the Boardwalk (even though it has been recommended by friends) We have often considered going there but we thought it would be too hot to sit outside. Next time we are there in the cooler months we shall hopefully try it! Glad to hear that you visited The Beach.

    1. Yes, try going during the cooler months both in RAK and Boardwalk. You'll definitely enjoy it. And of course I look forward to seeing your photos as you always have a different take from mine. Happy New Year!

  4. Like Miss B I'm so behind on my blog reading too! I've seen the pictures on Instagram and was looking forward to popping by. Anyway, wow wow, you look stunning, this place looks so imposing and your photo quality is amazing. You are very lucky to be able to call this your second home and you certainly look right at home on that beach - go girl! I hope you are not suffering with holiday blues and are getting into the British festivities. Have a great Christmas babes, and you are a babe ha ha xx

    1. Ha ha. Thank you so much as always. More photos in 2015 :D x


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