To Brunch Or Not To Brunch..... That is the question!
Brunch in Dubai is a teeny tiny bit different from your average brunch in the rest of the world.
The dictionary defines brunch as "A meal that serves as both breakfast and lunch"... which means that brunch in Dubai is nothing like the dictionary definition.
Brunch in Dubai is an all out feast. Like Christmas on steroids. The food choices are mind boggling, and there will be so many things to try that you never really get fed up of the menu. Then there are the drinks. They are endless and there is so much choice it makes your head spin. In Dubai that really is something, because alcohol is expensive here. So an all you can eat and drink extravaganza is really something.
As with all things in Dubai, brunch is the place to be seen. To dress to the nines and really enjoy yourselves. Brunch usually takes place on a Friday afternoon (Friday being part of the weekend in Dubai), although the popularity of brunch means that they are now spilling into Saturday and even Thursday evenings.
I've listed my favourite brunches in Dubai below!
Brunches Without Children:
Personally, I have no patience for brunch with babies/children. For me, brunch is the escape, the time to be without the kids and to indulge in some adult only time. Although there are so many people who take their kids to brunch and love it, so I think it depends on the personality of the parents and the children. I can't relax at brunch if my kids are there, so I prefer to wait and do it as an adult only affair!
For those of you without children (or like me, prefer to leave them at home), here are my favourites:
Yalumba, Le Meridian:
Yalumba can only be described as a "messy" brunch, and children are definitely not catered for. I think this is my favourite brunch, simply because champagne is free flowing at this one. And not just one champagne, you can choose between four: Bollinger; Tattinger; Laurent Perrier and, if you want to upgrade your package Laurent Perrier Rose (My favourite favourite favourite!).
There is absolutely no option to select a lower priced package which does not include alcohol, so this is not the brunch to go to if you are pregnant or if you don't drink. Firstly because you'll spend a lot of money for a lot of drinks that you won't be indulging in, and secondly because everyone around you is going to be merry. There is lots of singing and dancing by the end of brunch, so probably not much fun if you are the designated driver.
I also love this brunch because it has both buffet and a la carte options. I find with brunch that I am too busy talking (who would have guessed) and as a result there is not a lot of time spent on my feet wandering the buffet selection (which is fabulous at Yalumba). So having menus on the table and being able to order food to be brought to you, mean't that I actually ate enough during brunch and did not end up over merry on the champagne.
The food is as great as the drinks package and you'll come home feeling suitably full of both. While it's not a cheap brunch, it's also not the most expensive in Dubai, in fact most brunches seem to be on a par price wise these days.
Al Qasr, Madinat Jumeirah:
Al Qasr is by far one of the biggest brunches in Dubai. Spread over the Madinat Jumeriah complex, if you are looking for a particular food here, you will find it.
The Al Qasr brunch actually provide you with a map when you arrive, so that you can navigate all the food stations. I'm not joking.
Sparkling wine and soft drinks are served to your table and there is a multitude of drinks stations to choose from, so whether it's a classic gin and tonic or a bright cocktail, you'll find something to suit every whim at the Al Qasr.
While the Al Qasr caters to children in some respects, for me, it's an adult only brunch unless your kids are older than mine and are happy to sit relatively still for four hours.
Bubbalicious, The Westin:
This is the ultimate family brunch. Three of The Westin's restaurants combine to provide the setting for their Friday brunch, so you have plenty of choices on where to sit to best suit your needs. Plus the dessert stations are something to see!
There are loads of things here to keep the kids entertained, including a petting zoo, a magician and acrobats. The waiting staff are also great with kids and are happy to circle the dining room with the younger ones so that you can actually eat something.
This brunch also gives you the option to purchase the soft drinks only package, so you are not entirely left out in the cold if family and friends are headed out for brunch while you are not drinking.
Al Badia Picnic Brunch, Al Badia Golf Club:
This is quite simply my favourite winter time brunch in Dubai. Al Badia's picnic brunch takes place on the lawn at the foot of the clubhouse near to the lake.
There is an amazing children area for children of all ages, and you can sit and eat while they are not too far away. The food is just beautiful and the setting is divine! It's a perfect brunch when the weather breaks and the cooler winter sunshine makes it perfect outdoor weather.
You have the choice of sitting on blankets for your "picnic" (don't worry, you still get a table to eat off!) or to sit at a traditional table. This is great when you have little ones who need to be strapped to a highchair when they are eating, or risk everyone in sight getting covered in whatever sticky and brightly coloured food has taken their fancy.
You receive your own picnic basket on arrival, filled with delicious food, but there are also live cooking stations to make sure your every desire is catered for!
Again, there are drinks packages, so you can spend as little or as much as you like, depending on what your favourite tipple of the moment happens to be. You'll still feel spoiled if you are the designated driver on this brunch.
Now, no blog post about brunch would be complete without a few ideas on perfect brunch ready outfits. And I have found a gem of a brand! Desert Chic is a Dubai based company who has an AMAZING clothing range, perfectly designed with brunch in mind.
They only carried limited stock of each item, so you are less likely to have several clones wandering about at brunch, and if you live in Dubai Marina they will even bring the pieces to your door for you to try. They are also more than affordable, which is fantastic because shopping in Dubai can often get expensive, with designer labels at every turn.
So if you are looking for the perfect outfit, please do take a peek at Desert Chic's Facebook page and see if there is a new outfit just waiting for you!
Here is a sneaky peek at some of their current designs! Each of these gorgeous outfits are only 350 AED each! Perfect for a little Friday Brunch Magic.