Shangri-la Hotel Qaryat Al Beri: Luxury From Apex To Zenith

The hotel’s ecofriendly waterways are filled with seawater pumped into the canals

Chic, Sleek, Unique

images by John Douglas, JohnDouglasArt.com

Abu Dhabi.  What do you think of when you hear the name?  Etihad?  Conservative government capital?  Sand?  Abu Dhabi is coming into its own as a destination that offers visitors the best the (very wealthy) country has to offer.  Shopping, socialising, and desert adventure are all part of the Abu Dhabi experience.  There is a lot more to the biggest (by far) of the United Arab Emirates than people (who have not been there) would imagine, and Shangri-la Hotel Qaryat Al Beri embodies the best of the emirate with grand accommodation, superb style, delicious dining, and peerless service.

Even by the usual Shangri-la standards, this property impresses.  Space and luxury make a fine pair; the public areas of this vast complex are extremely airy and welcoming while still maintaining an elevated air of dignity worthy of the many VIP guests who stay here.  Some opt for the lovely suites, others for entire houses.  Shangri-la Qaryat al-Beri maintains its own lane of private villas, each a fully equipped home away from home for those demanding total privacy without forsaking the special treatment of a five-star hotel.  As in the main building, the villas are decorated with works of art both whimsical and symbolic in a tasteful display of restrained elegance.  No neo-Baroque gilded mirrors here; this is contemporary Arabian style at its best.

The massage rooms maintain the hotel’s Arabian theme

The same may be said of the Pearls and Caviar bar/restaurant complex, in a separate building away from the accommodations.  Pearls is the name of the bar, a seductive space where the outdoor terrace is very popular.  The sublime interiors of Caviar, the restaurant, are as chic as any in Paris or Tokyo and enjoy the same view of the water and the gorgeous National Mosque, Abu Dhabi’s latest landmark in architectural excellence. 

No, this is not the lobby. It is the living room of one of Shangri-la’s spectacular private villas

Food is something of a venerated artistic medium at Shangri-la Qaryat Al Beri.  The culinary glory of Bord Eau will have you crying when the last bite is swallowed and there is no more to eat.  Take solace in the perfect evening setting offering views over the hotel’s beautiful pool and the Mosque bathed in light across the river.  The most impressive meal of your day, though, may very well be breakfast, when a buffet to end all buffets is available for your indulgence in a tantalising mix of ethnic cuisines.  No one starts the day hungry here. 

Pearls and Caviar, Shangri-la’s chic restaurant and bar

While almost all the five-star properties in Abu Dhabi are located in the city centre, Shangri-la is situated in the Between The Bridges area, convenient to the airport and much more of a journey into escapism than the vertical hotels in town.  Shangri-la Qaryat al-Beri is in essence a self-contained resort where all a traveller’s needs are attended to with utmost courtesy.  The adjacent mall-as-souk on the grounds of the hotel offers an array of traditional items and dazzling luxury goods; sometimes they are one in the same. 

Poolside dining is an illuminating experience

A visit to the sophisticated websites of the Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority and Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, will provide several more reasons to justify a visit to the world’s most forward-thinking country and a stay at this most sumptuous of desert palaces—as if any more are necessary.

Shangri-la Qaryat Al Beri is located directly across the water from the new National Mosque, a masterpiece of architecture

 

Source = Mr. eTraveller
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