Abu Dhabi summer camps 2016
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We’ve all been there. Braving the sweltering Emirati heat and preparing for a bit of a summer slog. Schools are out, the kids’ friends have jetted off, and you’re left trying to find ways to entertain the little ones indoors (without more Ben 10 re-runs). Well, we’re here to tell you it’s not that hard. Some friendly Abu Dhabi institutions are running a range of summer camps that allow them to paint, swim, learn and generally have fun all summer long. Here are 12 you need to sign up to now...
1 Abu Dhabi Pottery Establishment
Got a budding Picasso in the family? Allow them to tap into their artistic talents at this arty summer camp, which is open to kids five to 14. Activities include designing, drawing, painting, colouring and playing with clay to create three dimensional art and jewellery. They’ll also get a go on the potter’s wheel, learning how to pinch, coil and slab, then paint them pretty. Just make sure they wear an old T-shirt, because it’s going to get messy.
Dhs200 (one session), Dhs760 (four sessions), Dhs1,800 (ten sessions). Ten percent discount for siblings. Fees inclusive of all materials. June 1-August 30, 10am-1pm. 16th Street, near Al Khalidiya Park, www.abudhabipottery.com (02 666 7079).
2 Al Forsan International Sports Resort
It’s not just about sports at this summer camp, although it does make up a pretty big part of it. On top of swimming, football, gymnastics, basketball, archery (deep breath), martial arts, volleyball and aerobics, the kids also get some down-time with a spot of arts and crafts. It’s
a great way to keep your little couch potatoes, aged four to 14, out and active throughout the holidays.
Dhs150 (daily), Dhs600 (weekly), Dhs2,040 (four weeks), Dhs3,780 (nine weeks). June 26-August 25, 9am-3pm. Al Forsan International Sports Resort, near Abu Dhabi Golf Club (02 556 8555).
3 Alliance Française
The kids will certainly know their bonjour from their au revoir after participating in this creative French-speaking camp. Open to children aged four to ten, the camp changes theme every week throughout July and August. Its programme includes sports and games, arts and crafts, dancing, theatre, cinema, cooking and water activities, plus a one-day educational trip every week. It’s fun, it’s instructive – it’s got that je ne sais quoi.
Dhs1,159 per week (non-members), Dhs1,000 (members). Discounts for siblings. July 10-September 1, Sun-Thu 9am-2pm. Villa 75, street 32, next to the Irish Embassy, www.afabudhabi.org (02 612 2900).
4 Art Beat Abu Dhabi
Young hands, they say, love exploring the textures of fabrics, felts, clay and other arty materials. And this is exactly what they’ll get to do in this creative summer camp. Children aged four to 15 can learn découpage, clay modelling, glass painting, drawing and acrylic painting, mixed media, and much more, as well as get the chance to make plenty of new friends at the humble arts hub.
Dhs200 per day, Dhs900 per week. June 19-September 1, 9am-2pm. Early drop-off or late pick-up available for Dhs25 extra per hour (with prior notice). Corner of Muroor (4) and Dhafra (25) Street, ArtBeatUAE@gmail.com (02 444 5135).
5 Beach Rotana
For more active sprogs, aged five to 11, the Beach Rotana’s Sports Camp is a must. Each week focuses on something new, whether it’s learning to swim, playing ball games, trying out Taekwondo, or even relaxing with some
creative arts and crafts – this camp has it all. It ends with a performance by the kids themselves.
Dhs150 (daily, with lunch), Dhs580 (weekly), Dhs1,480 (monthly). Prices are for non-members. Discounts available for siblings. June 26-August 4, 9am-2pm. Beach Rotana, Al Zahiya, www.rotana.com/beachrotana (02 697 9000).
6 Emirates Palace Royal Itinerary
Children can look forward to VVIP treatment at Emirates Palace this summer. The Very Important Prince & Princess package is a luxury approach to entertaining kids with a Disney gloss and royal flourish. After a chauffeur pick-up children are going to be presented with welcome goodie bags there are junior spa treatments, hair styling and Disney dress-up opportunities. The day of VVIP treatment is topped with a chocolate candy party in a ballroom and a tour of the palatial hotel grounds.
If the prince and princess option does not appeal then the Palace has an itinerary of classes including cooking, sport, dance, origami, cinema, water fights, kite making and sand castle building. Two of the daily activities (excluding lunch) are free to guests. If your child wants to do more, they will also be given lunch and a cool t-shirt and cap for just Dhs150.
Royal package. Dhs375. Throughout the summer. Emirates Palace, West Corniche Road, www.emiratespalace.ae (02 690 8888).
7 Expressions of Dance and Drama
This creative summer camp takes little stars on a journey with Princess Sofia. They’ll get to learn dance moves, get on stage and be dramatic, partake in a little arts and crafts, as well as get involved with fun games, then put on a grand finale just as they head back to school. There are classes throughout the days for various age groups, including ballet, Zumba and more at different locations throughout the city. And they’ll get a certificate of participation at the end of it all, too.
From Dhs85 per class. Buy four classes and get the fifth free. July 2-July 31, timings vary. International Music Institute and Happy Nest Playhouse, Gardens Plaza, www.expressions-dance.net (02 493 0115).
8 Kipina Nursery
This fun and friendly Finnish nursery is running a ten-week summer camp in both its locations. Each week takes kids, four months to five years old, through a variety of themes, such as recycling, music and movement, water and colour play, fun with food, birds and animals and even pirates and a treasure hunt. One thing is for sure – they’ll certainly not get bored here.
Dhs850 per week, Dhs7,500 (ten weeks). Special offer for Time Out Abu Dhabi - Enrol before July 5 and get Dhs2,500 off. June 26-September 1, Sun-Thu 7am-3pm. Kipina Al Bateen, Al Mirzam Street, Khalidiya (02 667 2445). Other location: Kipina Al Mushrif, uae.kipinakids.com (02 658 9529).
It doesn’t all have to be about the arts and sports. If your kid is more in tune with academics, then Mathnasium offers a fun programme that covers the whole summer to prepare little minds, aged four to 17, for the new school year. According to them, children lose 20 percent of math concepts and skills that were developed in the previous year, so this camp could be just what they need to get a head-start. If you don’t want to commit to a week-long programme, the team are also offering free math games in Al Reem Centre every other Thursday from 4.30pm to 6pm through June and July.
From Dhs740 per child, per week (foundation level). Free assessment on registration. June 12-August 25, Sun-Thu 10am-5pm. Mathnasium, Khalifa City (02 555 8785) and Al Reem Mathnasium, Al Reem Island, Marina Square (02 491 0122).
10 Sheraton Abu Dhabi
Fun-filled experiences await your kids, aged five to 14, at the hotel’s palm tree resort and health club. A variety of sport and outdoor activities are taking place, such as swimming lessons, water sports and beach games, as well as arts and crafts, Zumba classes, squash and table tennis. They’ll make friends and learn loads of great new skills, and enjoy a tasty lunch each day as part of the package. The best part of it all, is that you also get special benefits, such as free pool and beach passes every day while your kids are at the camp, plus discounts on water sports, fitness activities and diving.
Dhs800 per week, Dhs1,450 (two weeks), Dhs2,100 (three weeks), Dhs2,500 (four weeks), Dhs6,000 (ten weeks). July 10-September 14, Sun-Thu 9am-2pm. Sheraton Abu Dhabi, Corniche Road East, www.sheratonabudhabihotel.com (02 6970 272).
11 The Club, Abu Dhabi
If you’re a member, or the guest of a member, at this popular, family friendly club, then there are plenty of camps your kids can register for this season. In the multi-camp, there are team games, a bouncy castle, daily swimming, a mini cinema, and even kayaking. There’s also a hands-on design and technology camp for the brainiacs; a tennis camp for little Federers and Williamses; a two-day performing arts session and much more.
From Dhs120 per day. July 30-September 1, timings vary. The Club, Mina Zayed (02 673 1111).
12 The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal
Creativity, the environment, survival skills and wellness take centre stage for each week of The Ritz Kids Club Summer Camp. It’s open to four to 12 year olds and they get to do things like make their own scrapbook, learn how to make coconut mugs, go on a hotel-wide treasure hunt and learn about the importance of a healthy, balanced diet (in a fun, engaging way, of course), plus plenty more. In week five, they’ll be able to showcase their best creation.
Dhs250++ per day, Dhs1,000++ per week. July 10-August 11, Sun-Thu 9am-2pm. The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi, Grand Canal, Al Maqta Area, www.ritzcarlton.com (02 818 8888).
13 The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort
Sandcastle Club, the beautiful five-star resort’s exclusive children’s club, is celebrating the “art of play” this season, with five weeks of activities suitable for kids aged four to 12. From arts and crafts to water-based games, indoor and outdoor exercise to more chilled-out movie time, there’s plenty for them to get involved in. Plus, for the price, the kids get a summer camp shirt, sling bag, baseball cap and wrist band, as well as twice daily fruit snacks and a tasty lunch. What more can they want?
Dhs250 per day, Dhs900 per week. July 10-August 11, 9am-3.30pm. The St. Regis Saadiyat Island, www.stregissaadiyatisland.com (02 498 8888).
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