• Fri. Jun 24th, 2022

Why the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort is ideal for families

With the cooler weather finally here, many people want to make the most of it by escaping the hustle and bustle of big city life in the UAE.

High on staycation wish lists are places with beach views, luxury amenities, and plenty to do for adults and kids alike.

Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort has managed to retain its spot as a favorite in the northernmost emirate precisely because it ticks all of these boxes. The sprawling property offers a choice of guesthouses and villas, the latter of which are a stone’s throw from its 1.5-kilometre white-sand beach.

The National visited the popular destination of Ras Al Khaimah to see what awaits travelers.

Home

Considering we visited on a long weekend, we were quite surprised to find no long queues at reception. It might have something to do with the fact that everything seemed very well organized, with separate counters for check-in and check-out. Lively music played in the spacious Arabesque-style lobby, while the receptionist quickly took our contact details and handed us our key cards. She even upgraded us to a villa suite.

The neighborhood

Part of the charm of booking a stay at a hotel like the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort is its location. The beachfront location offers an island escape, while still managing to be close to town, a 15-minute drive from RAK Mall.

But, if you visit Ras Al Khaimah, you already know that part of the draw is its multitude of adventure activities and Jebel Jais, the highest peak in the United Arab Emirates where most of them take place. , is less than an hour from the hotel.

Security measures

The hotel follows Hilton’s CleanStay policy, which means all staff wear face masks, there are sanitizer stations in public areas, and no-contact menus in restaurants and bars. Another key part of the policy is a hygiene seal that you must break to enter your room, ensuring no one has been there since it was sanitized.

Safety rules at the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort are also evolving, in line with the emirate’s latest rules. For example, when we visited The Kitchen, the all-day dining establishment that serves a breakfast buffet, the staff informed us that they had started allowing a self-service option for the first time since more than one year, according to the updated official rules. . Residents who got up to serve themselves without a mask were politely reminded to put it on before heading to the buffet.

We spotted some customers not wearing face masks on a lounge chair near the beach and of course they are not worn in the pool. Given the hotel’s popularity, it can also get a bit busy, so we found it difficult to maintain social distancing rules at all times.

Bedroom

Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort's sea-facing villas offer gorgeous beach views.  Photo: Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort

What helps with social distancing, however, is the expanse of space. As mentioned, the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort offers a number of different sleeping options: from guest rooms to two-bedroom family villas. If you opt for the villa, the best way to get around is by buggy.

We were accommodated in a villa suite facing the sea, with a separate living room which can be used to access a large balcony area, with a giant garden bed. Perched right on the beach, with the water just steps away and the sound of the waves lapping at our feet, this might have been my favorite space on the entire property.

The room is also impressive. Shades of gray and blue, televisions in the bedroom and living room, swivel lamps by the bed, and a shower and tub provide a cozy place to hide. Bonus point for the sliding window by the bed that rewards you with a view of the beach when open, and the elephant-shaped towels on the bed.

The scene

The Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort has a 1.5 kilometer long white sand beach.  Photo: Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort

The facilities at the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort are extensive, you may want to plan your time carefully to ensure you cover everything (and you still may not be able to if you are only there for one night) .

There are seven pools. This includes a main saltwater pool, complete with the Sunset Bar, as well as children’s pools. Since most pools close at sunset, guests looking for a late night swim can head to the one at the Sol Beach Lounge instead.

One of the hotel’s other draws is having so many on-site activities that there’s no need to venture out of the resort. There is the spa for rest and relaxation and a gym for your workout needs. There’s also an on-site water sports center, boutique, and hairdressers, and the hotel organizes several tours, including kayaking and fishing trips.

The food

The hotel recently launched a children's gourmet menu.  Photo: Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort

Five restaurants within the property ensure you’re well covered, food-wise. The kitchen is an airy space with plenty of indoor and outdoor space where the daily buffet is served. We checked the lunch buffet to find a really extensive range, with a separate section for mezzes, a make-your-own salad counter, and hearty dishes in various cuisines (Indian specialties such as rice and channa masala can be found next to the zucchini moussaka).

Breakfast is also extensive, with just about anything you could ask for, from an omelet station with baked beans and sausage, to a variety of yogurts, fruits, and Indian specialties.

Other than that, diners can head to Piaceri Da Gustare for classic Italian cuisine, Dome Lounge and Rio Beach Bar for light snacks or Al Maeda for Middle Eastern cuisine. We ventured to Al Maeda to try a trio of hummus (Dh35) and a seafood platter (Dh191). The sujuk, spicy beef sausages (Dh43) are as good as it gets.

In an effort to be more family-friendly, the hotel has also revamped its children’s menu. No junk food here – instead chefs have introduced gourmet dishes such as yoghurt and garlic grilled chicken, herb-crusted baked salmon and quinoa alla frutta, aiming to add flavor and nutrition.

The ups and downs

The main pool at the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort.  Photo: Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort

The best part is easily the main saltwater pool near reception. Lined with palm trees and perfect for Instagram, the water temperature is just right and also offers the best sunset views.

If we were to quibble about the cons, the amount of single-use plastic used throughout the resort could be minimized. Plastic is used at several points during the stay, from key cards to bottles of shampoo, conditioner, and shower gel in the room.

The insider tip

For a nominal cost, you can get a pool float at the beach club. Get yourself one and a fluffy towel and you can spend the whole day leaving your worries at the pool.

The verdict

When it comes to stays, the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort checks all the boxes, reminding me why it’s a perennial favorite in the emirate. While Ras Al Khaimah has plenty of attractions, given its vastness and the sheer number of activities you can do here, you might not even want to venture out of the hotel – which is the best compliment you can give to a complex.

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The bottom line

Prices for one night at the Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort start from Dh450 ($122), but can easily double, and then some when long weekends or holidays are on the calendar. Plan ahead and make those reservations well in advance. Taxes will cost you around 135 Dh extra.

Check-in is at 3 p.m. and check-out at noon. The staff tries to accommodate late checkouts when possible.

Hilton Ras Al Khaimah Beach Resort, Al Maareedh Street, Ras Al Khaimah; www.hilton.com

This review was conducted at the hotel’s invitation during the global coronavirus pandemic. It reflects the hotel standards of the time, services may change in the future

Updated: January 13, 2022, 03:52