Get your dancing shoes on, readers.
Light up your evening at the Glitz & Glam celebration at Iris on the rooftop of the Oberoi Dubai. Tables with a view of the Burj Khalifa fireworks are Dh2,000 a head, a table in the lounge is Dh1,500, and the bar Dh1,000.
Shake a leg to 70s, 80s and 90s sounds at Maison Mathis overlooking the greens at Arabian Ranches Golf Club. Dh650 includes unlimited house beverages and food from the live cooking stations.
Westin Dubai Mina Al Seyahi’s Oeno hosts an old-school party with a bubbly buffet and nibbles from 10pm-3am at Dh399 per person. The Toy Brunch at China Grill throws a party from 9.30pm-2am with a bubbly night brunch (food served at tables) for Dh550.
We live by the water – so why not set sail?
End the year with a three-hour cruise with the Rustar Dhow Cruise in Dubai Creek from 9pm. Dh973 gets you a buffet by the chefs from Mövenpick, soft drinks, entertainment and a glass of bubbly.
In the Marina, rent yachts from Xclusive Yachts. A six-hour-long package starts from Dh6,000; yachts accommodate 200.
Bateaux Dubai’s gold-themed New Year’s cruise includes an eight-course dinner (Dh1,300 per person with unlimited house beverages and a glass of bubbly; Dh495 children five-11 years). Boarding at 7.45pm.
The Yellow Boats NYE tour begins at 10.30pm for a 120-minute trip including the Burj Al Arab in time for the fireworks. It’s Dh500 per person, from Dubai Marina Walk.
The Burj Al Arab’s gala dinner includes what they say is the longest firework display in the UAE, live music and beverages. Adults are Dh4,500, while 12-20 years pay Dh2,900 (under 12s go free!). With views of the Burj Khalifa, Roberto’s party has a four-course meal, welcome drink and an oyster buffet. Dh1,700 for the restaurant, Dh2,500 for the lounge, Dh2,900 on the terrace.
Would it even be New Year’s Eve without dancers in birdcages? Usher in the New Year at the Emirates Palace’s Etihad Ballroom, which will be transformed into a winter wonderland with snow, music, and dancers defying gravity. Head out to the beach for the fireworks and back to the ballroom for the after party and a midnight snack buffet. Dh2,750 for adults and Dh1,375 for children.
Doll up – but leave space for the food.
Atlantis The Palm is a one-stop party destination for all ages with live entertainment, buffet spreads, and a children’s play area, and of course the fireworks display. Entry is Dh2,900 (Dh2,030 for 12-20-year-olds, below 12s go free).
Both Zuma in Dubai’s DIFC and Abu Dhabi’s Al Maryah Island have resident DJs and saxophonists keeping guests entertained. Minimum spend of Dh1,000 both at the bar and at the restaurant with the full à la carte menu on offer.
Ring in your New Year to the sounds of jazz music at the Anantara Qasr Al Sarab, Abu Dhabi over a six-course dinner. Dh1,250 per adult includes soft beverages, Dh1,750 includes premium beverages and a glass of bubbly while children between four and 12 pay Dh850.
Prefer the simple life? Here are some less opulent but equally festive offers.
Mezlai at Emirates Palace Hotel, Abu Dhabi has its Emirati à la carte menu from 7 with a minimum spend of Dh500 per person.
Or do it American-style at Claw with bubbles, a seafood tower, carvery and barbecue for Dh650. There’s a DJ, games such as foosball and Giant Jenga and re-entry following the Burj Khalifa fireworks.
One for the sports fans: The Dubliners at the Le Méridien Dubai in Garhoud has big screens with Celtic music and sporting action, Dh199, with dinner buffet and two house beverages. The street fest from 8pm at the Rove Hotel Downtown offers views of fireworks, barbecue, carnival games, a DJ and kids’ slumber party. From Dh650-850 (children between six-11 are charged at Dh245 while those under six go free).
Coldplay is sold out (unless you want to hand over a month’s rent to online resellers) but there are plenty of other shows. Eight DJs are headed to the dunes to ring in the New Year at the Al Sahra Desert Equestrian Centre on Dubai-Al Ain Road from 7pm-3am. Tickets are Dh249 at 800tickets.com.
In Abu Dhabi, party on the beach with Jamaican reggae artist Wayne Wonder at the Reggae Beachfest party at Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort. Dh150 per person (free for those dining in the hotel’s restaurants). Lebanese star Najwa Karam will be joined by Moroccan singer and actor Saad Lamjarred for a concert at du Forum on Yas Island, from Dh650 at tixbox.com. Other than the obvious choice of Burj Khalifa, Dubai Water Canal offers great fireworks views from either side.
Get the party started with Atif Aslam Live in Dubai at the Dubai Tennis Stadium on December 30. The Pakistani signer known for his soulful voice rendered to Bollywood hits like Pehli Nazar Mein comes to Dubai for his first solo performance. Tickets start at Dh100 and are available on platinumlist.net. Gates open at 6pm show starts 8pm.
Catch the last day of the winter celebrations at the Bawadi Mall, Al Ain on December 30. Take part in kids’ activity “Pizza Turtle” led by the Ninja Turtle characters. Other attractions like games, workshops and cooking sessions for kids along with special discounts in stores are on offer.
Your New Year’s Eve begins at Zero Gravity with its Supernatural Saturdays. It offers an all-inclusive day-to-night experience starting from Dh199 every Saturday from 12pm-6pm. For reservations call 055 500 9111.
Celebrate New Year’s Eve at Iris, Yas Island for a bit of glitz and glamour. Package includes dinner, live entertainment and DJ. For reservations call 055 160 5636 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dance the night away at the Desert Beats New Year Eve featuring performers like Mohombi for the first time in Abu Dhabi along with Yung from Cali Swag District and Nina Sky. Carry a valid ID as the event is open to adults only. Tickets start at Dh245. For reservations call on 055 120 2660 or email email@example.com
Party with a view at the Fifty Shades of Gold featuring DJ Manoj & DJ Ace at the GQ Bar at JW Marriott Marquis, Dubai. Enjoy the views of the fireworks with beverages and canapés over a mix of international tracks. Tickets start at Dh300 and can be booked at platinumlist.net.
Fujairah International Marine Club hosts The Great Gatsby New Year’s Eve party featuring Dubai-based band, Acoustic Rain and DJ Tamo. Enjoy the evening with an open bar and fireworks at midnight from 6pm-4am. Tickets start at Dh250 and can be booked at platinumlist.net.
Head to the Coral Beach Resort, Sharjah for a Gala Dinner with entertainers recreating the 1001 Arabian Nights story. Priced at Dh399 per person, tickets can be booked on platinumlist.net.
Global Village kick starts the New Year’s party with Lebanese superstar Nancy Ajram performing on Dec 30 at 9pm. The celebrations on December 31 include a circus show at 4.30pm and 6.10pm.
The second show will be followed by an interactive workshop session for kids giving them a chance to learn how to walk on mini stilts and juggling tricks. A high energy stunt show “Speed… Chase… Action!” will take place at 7.45pm at the specially created stunt arena at Global Village. Following the DJ Nawaf and special edition of City Jam show at 10.30pm, the skies will light up to fireworks at midnight.
Head to the Yas Mall, Abu Dhabi for the Evolution of Dance show from 5pm–1am on December 31 at the Town Square. The show features performers from Australia, China, America and Egypt who will showcase the dance celebrations of different cultures. Some retailers at the mall offer discounts to visitors displaying tickets of the Coldplay concert at the Yas Island. For more information log on to yasmall.ae.
Head to the Mattel Play! Town, an indoor eduplay attraction, located in City Walk to take part in the festive activities till December 31. Children can decorate gingerbread cookies, create holiday nail art, watch the festive shows live by Barney and friends and get a chance to interact with them at the “Meet and Greet”. Show timings vary between 11am-10pm. More info on citywalk.ae/Play/Mattel-Play-Town or call 04 317 3999.
Welcome 2017 with a fireworks display that highlights the achievements of the UAE at Downtown Dubai New Year’s Eve Gala from 6pm on December 31. Celebrating national pride through a series of fireworks displays, the New Year’s Eve Gala by Emaar Properties, will have viewing galleries set up to witness the displays across the city, symbolising both the present and future of Dubai.
Choreographed to a soundtrack developed for the celebration, the display aims at creating life milestone moments with fireworks of a falcon flying high, swirling comets, and Arabian dance forms. As an ode to the Expo 2020 Dubai, the sequence will also recreate the design of the event’s logo. The midnight belongs to the fireworks display at the Burj Khalifa, with the event finale being a display in pyrotechnics celebrating Dubai’s new futuristic icon.
NEW YEAR NEW THINGS TO DO
Visit the Shaikh Zayed Heritage Festival till January 1, 2017 at Al Wathba, Abu Dhabi. There’s a VIP Majlis, Traditional Café, Craftswomen’s Corner, Henna Corner, Traditional Souq, Falconry Corner and Photo Gallery that all highlight Emirati traditions, heritage, culture and the role of founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Make sure to check out the pavilion that replicates the traditional architecture of Al Ain.
Kickstart 2017 with a Yogathon and SWAN Meditation session at the 136.1 Yoga studio, Dubai Marina from 5-7.30pm on January 1, 2017. Open to all levels, the session costs Dh100 for members and Dh125 for non-members. Call 04 4416287.
Missed out on New Year’s Eve action? Fret not, Katatonia, a Swedish metal band performs at the Music Room, Majestic Hotel Dubai on January 5, 6pm-3am. Tickets from Dh150 at Platinumlist.net.