Here are the winners, highly commended and nominees from the Best Beach Bar category at the Time Out Abu Dhabi Music & Nightlife Awards 2019.
The legendary brand has found a home on Saadiyat Beach, which is possibly the capital’s most beautiful stretch of golden sand. It’s an impressive setting and the only difficulty is choosing whether you want to collapse into one of the squishy bean bags on the sand, or relax on one of the white sofas on the wooden decking. Either way you’ll be in a prime location for watching the sun vanish over the clear waters of the Gulf. Make sure you keep an eye out for wild dolphins too.
St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort, Abu Dhabi (02 498 8888).
This comfortable outdoor bar has a garden lounge feel coupled with a gentle rising amphitheatre. Sitting there under the palm trees with a budget bucket of hops is an experience that’s hard to beat. With decent offers on throughout the week, it’s a great place to unwind.
Sheraton Abu Dhabi Hotel & Resort, Corniche Road East (02 677 3333).
Nasma Beachfront Bar
Having only opened towards the end of 2018, Nasma Beachfront is still quite new on the scene. Here you can relax on huge bean bags placed out on the sand, and order from a menu of tasty bar snacks. It’s chilled and sophisticated, and if you’re after a few quiet drinks in a pretty setting, there are few better places in the city.
Saadiyat Rotana Resort & Villas, Saadiyat Island (02 697 0000).
The Park Hyatt’s beach property is one of our favourite spots for a very lengthy weekend breakfast, but it’s also one of the best places for pre-dinner drinks in the capital. Located just metres from the immaculate sands of Saadiyat Beach, it never gets old.
Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi Hotel & Villas, Saadiyat Island (02 407 1138).
Blue Marlin Ibiza UAE
About a 40-minute drive from Abu Dhabi and 20 minutes from Dubai Marina, this beach spot in Ghantoot is where expats from both cities meet in the middle to chill, sunbathe, drink and dance. The dance floor leads straight out onto the sand, while a balcony overlooks the other side. If you’d rather observe the party from a comfortable seat by a cool fan (nobody is judging), then book a spot up here. Either way, you’ll have an unforgettable night.
Golden Tulip Al Jazira Hotels and Resort, Ghantoot (056 113 3400).
Any visit to Emirates Palace is enough to you feel like an actual prince or princess, and an evening at Breeze Lounge gives you a real taste of royalty. Recline in a sofa or tent-covered table and give your best nonchalant ‘Oh, I always hang out at stupidly fancy places like this’ pose for your increasingly jealous Insta followers. Earning its name from the fact that you are close enough to the glittering waters to literally feel the sea breeze, this is the kind of setting that makes you want to pinch yourself.
Emirates Palace, West Corniche (02 690 7999).
Cabana Beach Bar & Grill
This quaint white building is another bar which has a location that’s so perfect it’s almost laughable. Right on the sandy shores of the immaculate Corniche beach, here you can feel the sand between your toes as you sip on mixed drinks and dine on high-quality bar dishes such as hearty burgers and sandwiches overflowing with every millennial’s favourite trendy green fruit (no we’re not bored of avocados yet, thanks for asking). Sounds just awful, doesn’t it?
Nation Riviera Beach Club, Corniche Road West (02 694 4553).
We would spend every day on Zaya Nurai Island if we could and while any visit to this exclusive resort should involve spending a good amount of time trying to clamber onto the swings above the sea or taking a dip in the pool, you should also visit cool bar Ginger Mermaid. Here you can relax on enormous cushions and order from the rather impressive selection of tropical mixed drinks. Don’t forget those Insta likes, too. This is the perfect place to rack up more followers.
Zaya Nurai Island (02 506 6222).
Saadiyat Beach Club
This exclusive beach club is home to four bars and restaurants, a spa, male salon, pool (complete with pretty cabana beds), and of course, a lovely beach. It’s often hailed as the best pool day in the capital, and the ladies’ day deal lets girls enjoy a day here for Dhs90 on a Monday and Dhs150 on a Tuesday with four hours of free-flowing beverages thrown in too. Catch all that?
Saadiyat Beach Club, Saadiyat Island (02 656 3500).
Designed to be a ‘beach playground’, a visit to Yas Beach is always lots of fun. The capital’s party people flock here to enjoy the regular DJ sets and beach festivals, but it’s also got everything you need for a chilled out afternoon too. There’s 400 metres of golden sands, a huge pool and a wide selection of food to choose from including freshly made pizzas and authentic Arabic food. Plus, If you want to stay active and compete against your crew, there are two volleyball courts available as well. A good-value beach day.
Yas Beach, Yas Island (02 565 1100).