Venue Review: “The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal”

With “staycations” being the latest rage I highly recommend a trip to Abu Dhabi’s Ritz-Carlton, Grand Canal.
 
“A renaissance-designed luxury hotel, The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal is a beachfront 5-star hotel situated next to the iconic Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque featuring a 2,000-square-meter (21,500-square-foot) rejuvenating spa, ten on-site restaurants, sophisticated lounges and pool-side bars, and spacious meeting facilities. With 447 first-rate guest rooms and suites, and 85 private villas, the 5-star hotel will leave you with an unforgettable experience.”

I have never in my lifetime (as a child and now with children) seen such a red carpet rolled out for kids. This is one hotel that does not miss a single detail when it comes to the younger generation!
When we checked in, Ruby started asking me if I remembered to bring her floaties (arm bands). Of course, silly Mommy did NOT remember.  She was a bit cross with me…great! She soon became distracted with the hotel’s beauty and quickly forgot, phew!  
Low and behold…we arrived at our gorgeous room, and right there on her very own child safe bed were ARM BANDS! I later discovered, after reading through their magazine, that this is a common trait at the Ritz, they will nearly move mountains for our tots. The staff do their best to make an effort with each child, and they WERE listening when Ruby asked me. It was like a mini miracle, I was totally gobsmacked. Not only do they offer child beds, they even have services such as: bottle warmers, strollers, steriliser machines and more! On her bed, sat two baby elephants made out of towels, a Ritz Kids plush teddy AND a luxurious princess robe. I had one REALLY happy kiddo in front of me; this was going to be a great stay!Everyone was excited to explore our room. I immediately admired the cream and beige hues, along with the dark wood paneling giving off a nice sophisticated and relax feel. We had a living room area with a couch, Nespresso machine (bonus), nice flat screen TV, a desk, powder room and Ruby’s very own bed. Through the next door was my bed! I dived right into that beauty and laid there for a few minutes soaking in my new surroundings and 400 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets. The bed was perfect. I looked over at the bedside table…NO WAY! They printed a card with pictures of Ruby on it! What a nice personalized touch!

The view from our room was beautiful, we could see the whole canal streaming through Abu Dhabi and the balcony was nice and spacious. The soaker tub and bathroom was one of my favorite features. Ruby kept telling me the shutters that opened up into the bedroom from the bathroom were like the one’s she had seen in Frozen. My memory quickly zipped through the movie, and Uh-Huh! I could remember that scene, she was right indeed!

Nate the “Machine” was quick to discover the fruit basket that was left for us and indulged on it STAT! I then discovered the most delicious tray of cookies I have set my chompers in! Ruby got her hands in the jelly bean jar, and then nibbled on dates. Nate on the other hand…he needed an outfit change like you couldn’t believe! We were ready to explore the hotel and wander about.
 
My husband recommended a trip to the lounge, or as they would call it The Ritz-Carlton Club Level. We headed up to the 7thfloor and each had some snacks and bevvies. Ruby found the candy bar…of course! What a smart idea, they had little baggies which you could fill up with numerous varieties of sweeties. I later noticed this theme was carried about in the lobby tooJThe view from the lounge was another great site. We could see the entire hotel grounds and lavish landscaping. I sat back with the kids and tried to take it all in. While enjoying our light snacks, the personalized service made our time spent at the Club Level really intimate and comfortable. They serve five food and beverage presentations per day: breakfast, light snacks, hor d’oeuvres, drinks and sweets. The other nice feature was the personalized check-in and out service offered there, making things a real breeze! I could spot some computers with internet access, and pondered the possibility of checking my Facebook and e-mail…

Another trip back to the room, and outfit change for the children…ding dong, there was someone at our door! Who could it possibly be? A welcome tray for Miss Ruby! Oh wow! What a complete shock! A crystal plate with her name on it, a bowl of candy, cookie sunglasses, and a Minion made out of candy! That’s it! The Ritz officially blew me over the edge! They outdid themselves a hundred times over!

We had 10 dining options to choose from, and later that evening, we decided on “Li Jiang”. This Mommy’s new favorite Asian eatery! I only wish Abu Dhabi was closer to my home! The food was to die for. The service was another added touch that could not go unnoticed. Superb indeed!  The Chinese character for “beautiful” translates to “Li”, and “Jiang” is a river.  I was really taken by the décor too. Li Jiang provides a menu which combines traditional and contemporary Chinese with Southeast Asian classics offering a range of dim sum in several styles, a selection of soup and wok-fried meats, seafood, rice, and in authentic fashion, noodles hand-made tableside by a specialty chef. My husband and I were so full after our feast we did not even have the chance to sample the desert selection. Ruby had chicken fingers from  the Kids menu. The kid ate them up in no time! Our server also brought her over an apple juice in a child friendly cup. Always a nice touch in my books! She kept busy with the coloring book and crayons which was brought to her as soon as her bottom touched the chair (another bonus). Of course, she still had room for dessert! Strawberry ice cream which she carried with her and ate in the elevator! There were some important ambassadors having dinner at the table near to us, and I was worried if the kids would start acting up, but the servers assured me everything was fine, after all, they are child friendly straight across the board! It was getting late though, and we decided it would be best to get back to our room and get the kids settled.

When we arrived back in our room, our bed was nicely prepared for bedtime. The sheets folded back and little chocolates placed on either corner. I love when they do that! Everyone was ready for sleepy time.
The next morning Ruby started running her own bath! Is this kid a diva in the making or what? We all thought it would be fun to jump in and join her in our bathing suites! The tub was big enoughJ  Sadly that day we were surprised to see it raining outside (a rare sighting in UAE) with a bit of a cool breeze. Unfortunate, because the swimming pool was stunning, and we were all keen for a swim. The bathtub would have to do haha!

We spent that morning at the club level enjoying tasty treats and chatting away. Soon it was time for us to say farewell to the Ritz. Never a fun thing to do!
You may recall the previous day we were there for the Ritz Kids event. Follow this link to learn more about the program. {Ritz Kids}

Ruby was NOT happy to be going home! Neither were we…she kept asking to go back to the Kids Club. I felt bad that we had to leave. The bellman was at our door collecting our luggage, and suddenly we were heading home with two zonked out kids in the back! A fun time had by all! 

1 Comment on Venue Review: “The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal”

  1. http//:www.expatbabyadventures.wordpress.com
    February 21, 2014 at 9:22 am (6 years ago)

    Corrine this looks absolutely wonderful! Im amazed and VERY impressed at there attention to detail. Will be checking this out immediately

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