We don’t send as many postcards as we used to. If we did, they would probably show a picture of a sun lounger, a palm tree and somebody in a floppy sun hat sipping a freshly squeezed juice. The message on the back would just say “It is perfect here” and there would be no hashtags or @s in sight.
Sounds great doesn’t it?
If you need any postcard inspiration, then put the Nation Riviera Beach club at the top of your list. The luxury hide-out is part of the five-star St Regis Abu Dhabi on the Abu Dhabi Corniche and we’ve got five excellent reasons why it’s worth bringing postcards back, just for an excuse to visit.
Paddling, posing and, perhaps, a pristine stroll
There is no shortage of sand in Abu Dhabi, we get that, but when you’ve made the decision to sprawl across a patch for a few lazy hours you deserve to secure a section of the good stuff. Nation Riviera Beach Club has a 200m private stretch of beautifully maintained beach, which, although it hardly requires exploration is just right for a mid-sunbathe stroll. Dip your toes into the soothing waters of the Arabian Gulf every half hour or so and you will stay cool and feel rather pleased with yourself. There is also a temperature-controlled pool, garden area and excellent loungers.
Feast on a beach
The things Time Out would do in order to eat raspberry cheesecake are well documented. So, finding it on a menu at a place we would happily sacrifice a colleague to enjoy an afternoon at was enough to leave us whimpering with delight for an hour or so. Flip flop your way from your private lounger or beach towel to the Cabana Bar and Grill and you’ll find exactly the sort of crowd-pleasing plates that make you realise there is a very good reason you work so hard. And that is because you can wind down at a place like this. Half a dozen freshly prepared salads, big juicy burgers, some seafood specialties and a ceviche bar mean there are plenty of options for both light bites and more substantial meals. Of course, this being an outdoorsy place you could do a lot worse than going for the charcoal-grilled prawns of steak dishes, safe in the knowledge you can sleep off any excess later on.
Stop, cabana time!
Take your chilling and grilling to the next level from the comfort of your own private cabana. These are large enough for a family or an intimate group of friends to use as a base and are comfortable, breezy and offer extra shade. There are about a dozen (actually, there are exactly a dozen – we counted them up while slugging back a watermelon mocktail) and all just a few steps away from an outdoor Jacuzzi (seriously, we call this work).
Let kids be kids
Despite the tendency of some beach clubs to take on a role more similar to an Ibiza-style superclub, at Nation Riviera a family atmosphere means exactly that. In other words family-friendly facilities that score equally highly with both children and adults. For grown-ups that means supervised indoor and outdoor activities, shaded pool areas and even nanny services. For kids, not to mention the occasional excitable parent, that means a clubhouse shaped like a pirate ship, complete with mini waterslide and crow’s nest.
Of course, Time Out would never recommend a day of only sleepy seaside sedation. Actually, we’re pretty sure we have and we will do it again, but that is not to say there is not a lot to be said for the activities and facilities on offer at Nation Riviera for those who want to do more than just lie back and read a good book. Various sports and social group activities, including beach circuit training, Pilates and personal training with hotel staff or use of the gym and fitness facilities are offered. You can even try out sunrise and sunset yoga with highly regarded yogi Joelle Bargouthy to add some stretch to your beach visit.
Day passes cost from Dhs150. Nation Riviera Beach Club is at the St Regis Abu Dhabi hotel. Visit www.nationrivierabeachclub.com for more information.