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REVIEWED: THE WALDORF ASTORIA RAS AL KHAIMAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

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Who hasn’t dreamt of staying at a luxurious palace? The Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah is one of those exceptional places that one dreams of visiting. Reviewed : Asia takes you on a tour of this remarkable property.

"Its imposing entrance, majestic lobby, and refinement found throughout the hotel make it a place of exception more akin to a palace than a hotel complex. ”

GETTING THERE

The Waldorf Astoria is located in the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, one of the 7 emirates forming the United Arab Emirates and bordering the Sultanate of Oman. Situated 45 minutes by road from the emirate of Dubai, reaching the hotel is relatively simple due to the country’s ultra-modern road network. You can take either the highway through the desert or a national road along the coast of the United Arab Emirates to reach the Waldorf Astoria.

This means you’ll enjoy a scenic drive with unique landscapes during your journey. It’s also approximately 45 minutes from Dubai International Airport, allowing you to reach the hotel quickly once you land in Dubai.

Ras Al Khaimah is also a destination for adventure, nature, and tranquility. As the northernmost emirate in the country, it boasts magnificent and spectacular mountains, azure blue seas with white sandy beaches, red sand deserts, and lush green plains cut into a series of coves and lagoons.

waldorf astoria rak

The setting

From the moment you approach the hotel, visible in the distance from the road leading to the entrance of the emirate, you’ll notice that the Waldorf Astoria boasts an imposing architecture befitting a palace. The grand entrance of the hotel, with its fountains and large arch, immediately gives a glimpse of the level of luxury and refinement that you’ll find once inside the premises.

waldorf astoria rak

The hotel’s reception, designed inspired by the centuries-old practice of pearl fishing in the region, is simply magnificent. As you enter, you’ll be greeted by the hotel’s own pearl, an iconic clock, a signature of Waldorf hotels around the world, based on the ancient astrolabe, which was used to determine prayer times in the Islamic faith.

Modeled after a compass, the clock faces are decorated with accents of turquoise glass, and the clock has been engraved with a line from a traditional Bedouin poem, “From your own country, travel to find glory.”

Behind the reception counters, framed wall panels recall the colors of the sea; covered in turquoise silk, they’ve been meticulously hand-stitched with sequins in a wavy pattern. On the right, the impressive double spiral staircase is revealed, a symbolic element of the hotel and the most photographed spot by visitors.

THE ROOMS

The Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah offers 346 luxury rooms and suites reflecting the grand setting of the property, providing residents with the luxury of space and tranquility. The hotel rooms are a true reflection of the Waldorf Astoria: grand and luxurious. They embody the very essence of the hotel’s concept: an oasis by the water and in the midst of the desert.

Each room spans at least 56 square meters, offering a range of panoramic views of the Arabian Sea, a championship golf course, the majestic Hajar Mountains, and long stretches of white sandy beaches. The neutral-toned textiles create a soothing atmosphere, punctuated with touches of turquoise, such as the spiral lines of the wool carpet and the massive handmade swirling glass spheres resting on the wooden headboards.

waldorf astoria rak

The suites are designed to offer guests the utmost privacy. Lavish finishes abound; a grand white marble staircase with a spectacular black balustrade evokes the glamour of Chanel; in the rooms, custom headboards are adorned with mother-of-pearl inlays; and contemporary art blends with traditional Islamic details.

Already spacious inside, our room also had a very large balcony terrace equipped with sofas and couches, from which we could observe the hotel’s pools below and the hotel’s beach. This terrace was also an ideal spot during our stay to admire a magnificent sunset over the water.

waldorf astoria rak

Leisure & Well-being

The Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah features a large family pool with enough space and sun loungers to accommodate all hotel residents at any time of the day. Couples or adults seeking a quieter spot will appreciate the privacy of the complex’s second infinity pool, reserved for adults and facing the sea, making it an ideal spot for sunsets.

This second pool is equipped with cabanas with outdoor mattresses. The same cabanas can also be found in the hotel gardens for those who wish to relax during the day without being exposed to the sun.

The hotel also has a gym and a spa where various body treatments and massages are offered.

waldorf astoria rak

AL HAMRA GOLF CLUB – GOLFING AT WALDORF ASTORIA RAK

Golf enthusiasts will not be disappointed during their stay at Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah. The hotel is fortunate to be bordered by two golf courses. The main course, an 18-hole Par 72 course measuring 7,325 yards to international standards designed by Peter Harradine, is the venue for several local and international competitions throughout the year.

A second 9-hole Par 3 course is intended for those looking to improve their short game. Each course has its own clubhouse with restaurants and a pro shop boutique.

Both courses share the same practice ground (driving range). From various points on the course, you can observe the architectural beauty of the hotel in the distance and take some memorable photos.

WALDORF ASTORIA RAK

CULINARY EXPERIENCES

Waldorf Astoria boasts no less than 9 restaurants and lounges, offering a diverse cuisine to visitors.

We tried Marjan (meaning “coral” in Arabic), the hotel’s restaurant offering regional cuisine. The ambiance of this restaurant is perfect for romantic dinners, as you’ll be welcomed into a softly lit room with a cozy atmosphere. The restaurant even has its own line of luxury tableware, specially designed for the hotel by a local ceramicist.

Marjan offers an exclusive atmosphere influenced by antique Islamic design. The juxtaposition between the traditional and the contemporary is highlighted by furniture that combines function and art, such as a chandelier locally made from bronze spheres of various sizes and the bases of the serving tables that seem to be interwoven gold threads.

Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah Marjan May 2014 (Personnalisé)

FINAL VERDICT

The Waldorf Astoria is certainly the most luxurious hotel in the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. Its imposing entrance, majestic lobby, and refinement found throughout the hotel make it a place of exception more akin to a palace than a hotel complex. We were truly impressed during our stay at the Waldorf Astoria and have an unforgettable memory of this hotel. A place to visit without any hesitation if you are staying in this emirate.

Nearby Attractions and Activities:

  • Al Hamra Mall (5-minute walk)
  • Al Hamra Golf Course (3-minute walk)
  • Iceland Waterpark (10-minute drive)
  • RAK Sailing Academy (10-minute drive)
  • RAK Mall (20-minute drive)
  • Manar Mall (20-minute drive)
  • Dubai (45-minute drive)

CONTACT INFO

Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah

Vienna Street, Ras Al Khaimah,U.A.E

Tel: +971-7-2035555

[email protected]

website

 
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