The Burj al Arab is the most famous building in Dubai, along with the Burj Khalifa, as it stands out with its unique architecture and location, despite the variety of skyscrapers in the metropolis. Designed to look like a sailboat, the hotel is an icon on the Dubai skyline, making it one of the city’s most popular attractions. The room rates are astronomically high and hardly affordable for average people.
Still, you have a chance to take a peek inside the hotel when you make a reservation for a restaurant or the Skyview Bar. The Afternoon Tea in the Atrium or the evening menu in the Skyview Bar on the 27th floor are recommendable.
The most important questions and answers at a glance
Yes, you are allowed to visit the hotel as a non-hotel guest if you have a reservation for a restaurant or for an official tour of the hotel.
The Afternoon Tea costs between 135$and 155$ per person, depending on whether you add alcohol or not.
Afternoon tea is held on the 1st floor of the hotel, in the Sahn Eddar restaurant from 3 – 6 pm.
The exclusive Afternoon Tea at the Burj al Arab
In the past, afternoon tea was still served in the Skyview Bar – but nowadays it’s on the 1st floor in the Sahn Eddar restaurant. Afternoon tea is held there from 3pm – 6pm and costs between 135$ and 155$ per person. You will find examples of what is served there below.
Alternatively, a visit to the Skyview Bar is recommended. Located on the top floor of the hotel, it is open daily from 5pm – 11:30pm. Drinks are served at the bar and as a guest you have to pay a minimal amount of AED 200, which is about 55$.
In addition, you can order a multi-course dinner there at a fixed price. Usually, when the waiter brings the menu, he will either recommend it or you can ask for it by yourself. It costs similar to the afternoon tea before – namely a good 160€ per person including some drinks.
So you can either enjoy the view from the Skyview Bar for a cheap 55$ or you can have a delicious meal right away. For a special occasion, this is perfect.
Where and how to make a reservation?
You can make a reservation for Afternoon Tea at Sahn Eddar Restaurant here.
To make a reservation at the Skyview Bar, use this link, which will also take you to the hotel’s website. Notice, however, that the site is only available in English and Arabic.
On the reservation page you select the desired date, time and specify the number of guests. Last but not least, you can specify if there is a special occasion for the visit, such as a birthday or anniversary. In that case, there will be a small gift from the hotel.
Since I was there with my parents and it was my mom’s birthday, she got a little chocolate cake and a rose. A nice little surprise that she was very happy about.
Official Burj al Arab Tour Booking
If you don’t want to visit the Burj al Arab on your own, you can also book an official tour of the hotel. Several Inside Burj al Arab tours are offered on the hotel website, guiding visitors through the hotel, including visits to some exclusive suites. The tours last 60 to 90 minutes and the cheapest one costs about 65$ per person. Those who want to enjoy extras such as a glass of champagne or a Gold Cappuccino are charged between 80$and 110$ per person.
Alternatively, you can book such a tour at Get your Guide for 90$ per person. It includes transfers to the Burj al Arab and you can easily cancel up to 24 hours in advance for free if your plans change.
The hotel also offers tour packages, combining the tour with a meal in the restaurant. The cheapest package, which includes a 3-course meal at Bastion, costs 135$.
For Afternoon Tea at Sahn Eddar, there is also a tour package that costs 200$ per person, which is a good 65$ more expensive than booking afternoon tea yourself.
Arrival to the Burj al Arab
On the day of the reservation, you are expected to arrive at the hotel no more than 30 minutes before and no later than 15 minutes after the reserved time, otherwise you may not be allowed to enter the gate too early, or your reservation may be cancelled if you arrive too late. Don’t forget your reservation confirmation or reservation number, as it may be checked at the hotel gate. As a general rule, however, it is sufficient to mention your own name.
If everything goes as planned, you can enjoy that satisfying feeling of being allowed to drive up to the hotel, while the crowds of tourists have to be limited to the view from the gate 😉
Arriving at the hotel, you are immediately welcomed by the staff and offered directional assistance. If there is still enough time, you can first look around the public areas and be blown away by the sheer luxury. Whether from the magnificent fountain, the large aquarium or the gigantic view upwards – this building is in a class of its own.
Being there just after New Year’s and before Russian Christmas, the hotel was still beautifully decorated for Christmas. It just sparkled all over the place. I had never seen a more terrific Christmas decoration.
To get to the Skyview Bar on the 27th floor, you have to go up the escalator one time and straight ahead to the elevators. You will be welcomed by a nice lady there and can finally be taken up in a glass elevator with a view of the water.
If you have a reservation for afternoon tea at Sahn Eddar, you only have to go up the escalator once and turn around – and there you are.
The Afternoon Tea Menu
Once you arrive at the restaurant, you are kindly escorted to your table and informed about the afternoon tea schedule.
At the beginning each guest gets a glass of champagne, if you have booked the package with alcohol, and dates as appetizers. After that, we had a cold soup, followed by a warm pumpkin quiche. As a small intermediate course we had a fruit sorbet to neutralize the taste, how the waiter explained us very nicely.
We were next served two étagères of a wide variety of finger sandwiches, which scored both in terms of taste and appearance.
By the way, all non-alcoholic drinks and the first glass of champagne are included in the price. You can order as many drinks as you like and even if the food is not enough – which I highly doubt – you can ask for extra.
Finally, the last course was the highlight of every meal: the dessert. Two fully loaded étagères of scones, assorted jams and pretty little cakes were served. Even though I have a well-developed Sweet Tooth – this was too heavy even for me.
The most tempting sweet sins for me, of course, I had to try, but despite our best efforts, the three of us unfortunately did not manage to devour everything.
Birthday at the Burj al Arab at Tea Time
Just in time for dessert, the birthday surprise for my mother was also brought to the table: another piece of cake with birthday wishes as well as the already mentioned little flower. She had no idea about this and was very emotional. So surprise totally succeeded.
Almost exactly two hours after our arrival, we left again this wonderful place where you can really enjoy yourself, marveled again at the vaults of the hotel on the first floor, beautifully illuminated in the dark, and finally went out.
It is not recommended to take a cab right in front of the door, but to walk back over the bridge to the entrance gate. So you can also take great pictures of the hotel and enjoy the view.
|Geführte Tour im Burj Al Arab mit Hoteltransfer||3 Stunden||ab 83€|
|Dubai Marina, Atlantis, Palm & Burj Al Arab per Schnellboot||1,5 Stunden||32€|
|Burj Khalifa Ticket für die 124. & 125. Etage||ca. 1 Stunde||ab 43€|
|Burj Khalifa: 124. Etage & Mittag-/Abendessen im Burj Club||5 Stunden||80€|
|Wüsten-Safari, Quadfahrt, Kamelritt & Al Khayma Camp||4-7 Stunden||ab 32€|
|Dubai Marina: Yacht-Tour mit Frühstück oder BBQ||2-3 Stunden||38€|
|Atlantis Aquaventure & The Lost Chambers Aquarium||1 Tag gültig||92€|
Conclusion about the afternoon tea at the Burj Al Arab
An afternoon at the Burj Al Arab is simply an absolute highlight and a once in a lifetime experience. The whole process is expensive, but if you don’t have to watch every penny – which you don’t do on vacation anyway – you can and should treat yourself to this special pampering program in case of doubt.
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