By VICTOR NZE
The City of Dubai has unveiled an array of venues for Nigerians seeking an epic wedding adventure and a romantic honeymoon getaway in the beautiful Emirati City.
They include beautiful indoor, outdoor, desert, and quirky locations that can also serve as backdrops for exotic pre-wedding photoshoots.
Couples interested in indoor wedding venues with a pleasant ambience and sophisticated interior design to make intimate ceremonies truly unforgettable will be spoilt for choice with the number of available options. Some of these include the Dubai Opera, the city’s first purpose-built performing arts theatre. The Opera’s auditorium can be transformed into a unique proscenium arch hall, with the ability to accommodate up to 1,000 guests across the 1,800sqm hall. In the foyer, the immense drop chandelier (made of 30,000 individually crafted glass pearls and lit up by 3,000 LED sources) creates an ideal setting for the welcome reception, or as a focal point for a wedding photo shoot. The venue’s rooftop restaurant, meanwhile, offers iconic views of Downtown Dubai and is another good choice for pictures.
There’s also the clean, contemporary space at Armani Hotel Dubai that occupies a prime address in the first 39 floors within the spectacular Burj Khalifa. Famed designer, Giorgio Armani, designed it as the perfect canvas for unique luxury wedding celebrations. What’s more, expert planners are on hand to coordinate the entire affair – be it in the sophisticated setting of the Armani/Ballroom or the stunning landscaped gardens at Armani/Pavilion, boasting the iconic backdrop of The Dubai Fountain.
Reminiscent of a 16th-century Italian palace with high ceilings and landscaped gardens, Palazzo Versace Dubai is an iconic addition to Dubai’s portfolio of hotels. Dramatic neoclassical architecture, a beautifully decorated ballroom with chandeliers, glassware and tableware from the Versace Home Collection, and a tailored menu selection make weddings here genuinely distinctive. The venue options include the magnificent Gala Ballroom, providing the perfect setting for lavish wedding events for up to 900 guests, with an outdoor patio offering unobstructed views of the Dubai Creek to complement the luxurious experience.
Couples interested in stunning stretches of sandy shorelines and lush gardens outdoors also have the Ritz-Carlton, Dubai Polo and Equestrian Club, One& Only Royal Mirage, Madinat Jumeirah and Atlantis, The Palm.
The Ritz-Carlton’s beachfront retreat features an elegant modern setting amidst the towering skyscrapers of Dubai Marina. The resort’s outdoor venues are set amongst landscaped gardens, with views of the turquoise waters and sandy shores of the Arabian Gulf providing an idyllic backdrop for alfresco weddings.
At the Dubai Polo and Equestrian Club, brides can choose to arrive by horse-drawn carriage against a backdrop of majestic stallions or tie the knot in a special ceremony under the stars while The Farm, Al Barari provides a natural atmosphere for a wedding celebration amongst nature.
Overlooking the Palm Island Bay, the One&Only Royal Mirage is set amidst a 65-acre oasis of lavishly landscaped gardens, just minutes away from Dubai Marina. With magnificent settings of an expansive, picturesque beachfront, spacious gardens, a variety of water fountains, winding walkways, arches and domes, the resort offers a collection of the most unique and scenic venues – making it one of the city’s most stylish beach resorts for weddings and honeymoons.
Some of the other outdoor venues include Jumeirah Beach Hotel, Queen Elizabeth 2 (QE2), a great destination with a history spanning 50 years and Anantara The Palm.
Perfect for those seeking a taste of Dubai’s unique desert culture, the city is home to picturesque landscapes set amid the beauty of sand dunes with the Al Maha Desert Resort & Spa, and Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa being two of the leading desert wedding venues.
Couples interested in quirky weddings also have their taste well catered for in the helipad of Dubai’s iconic sail-shaped Burj Al Arab hotel, boasting breath-taking panoramic views of the entire city and the Arabian Gulf and Platinum Heritage out in the desert dunes.
With a choice of excellent wedding packages to suit every couple’s requirements, couples at the Atlantis, The Palm can opt to welcome 65,000 marine guests at a unique underwater ceremony at The Lost Chambers Aquarium – from sharks, stingrays, piranhas, lobsters, or even the tiniest of seahorses.
Romantic getaways including a private royal desert retreat in the Dubai Desert Conversation Reserve, a magical Hot Air Balloon adventure and the spectacular scenery of the mountain enclave of the Hatta Wadi Hub. Here, newly-weds can participate in high-energy activities such as mountain biking, carting, archery, adventure rope climbing, hiking, kayaking, as well as a human slingshot and ziplining activities. The adventure centre also features Hatta Drop-in, Asia’s first water jump park. Besides, the developments also include Hatta Zorbing, a specialised zorbing centre for adults and kids where people sit inside giant blow-up balls and are propelled down slopes.