Located on the fringes of the UAE’s capital city close to the iconic Sheikh Zayed Mosque, media hub Twofour54, and the expansive Khalifa Park lies the Park Rotana. A five star hotel ideally situated within easy reach of Abu Dhabi International Airport, the leisure attractions of Yas Island and the business district of ADNEC.
Unassuming from the outside, the modern facade gives way to a glass atrium that feels almost cubist in design and presents symmetrical gleaming wire work providing the impression of residing within a transparent Rubik’s cube. The lobby area with it’s ample soft furnishings and abundance of floral blooms immediately provokes the homeliness so often associated with the mid-range Rotana brand.
The lobby is the life force of this specific property and staff provide a good first impression. Check-in is prompt and efficient from a warm and friendly team of bi-lingual staff who were exceptionally patient with our young family, even more impressive given the Park Rotana’s associations as a predominantly business driven hotel. Nothing could be further from the truth as we visit during Ramadan for a very leisure-driven stay to take advantage of Rotana’s ‘Yas Island Parks Escape Package’ which includes a one night stay with breakfast and late check-out PLUS admission to popular tourist attractions Yas Waterworld & Ferrari World.
The Room: The low-rise nature of the Park Rotana allows for generously sized rooms which appear seamlessly integrated into the walls of the spacious corridors flanking the elevators. The communal areas are sleek and dark, reflecting the modern and simplistic design Rotana have showcasing with their newer properties. With 318 rooms and suites each offering views over Khalifa Park or the Sheikh Zayed Bridge, either vantage point is a winner. Though it’s a shame the buildings positioning doesn’t allow for Shiekh Zayed Mosque views considering the hotel is just a stones throw from Abu Dhabi’s most iconic structure.
Our 47 SQM suite impressed due to the separation between living area and bedroom. Decorated in a pleasing colour scheme of teal and turquoise with subtle gold embellishments the bedroom is home to a king sized bed, ensuite bathroom, and the first of two large flatscreen televisions. The bathroom although missing a tub, boasts a wonderfully powerful rainfall shower and dark tiling that complete the modern look. The ample living area is more set-up for work and relaxation with it’s writing desk, four seater dining table and large plush sofa – the living area also features the suites second bathroom.
With the market place being so competitive in Abu Dhabi, we would’ve liked a coffee machine (as opposed to the powdered stuff), but for now guests can expect a mini fridge, high speed internet, hair dryer, iron, phone and safety deposit box.
There are two things we look for when on staycation at a hotel – the comfort of the bed and the effectiveness of the blackout curtains. The Park Rotana succeeds admirably in both criteria, offering a large king size bed veering on the right side of softness (though the seemingly common practice of a ‘pillow menu’ has been overlooked). The blackout curtains allow for a sense of eternal darkness that we really appreciated (the darker room, the more likely the kids are to sleep in) and the welcome addition of bath robes and slippers add an extra level of comfort. Our suite felt cosy and homely while also adding a touch of class in a space reminiscent of the modern convenience on display at the Yas Island Rotana.
Recreation: One of the strongest selling points of the Park Rotana has always been the pool area with its swim-up bar and expansive gardens. During our stay we should note that the property is currently undergoing some major landscaping with renovations taking place to the outdoor areas.
This means the swimming pools, tennis court and billiards area are currently out of action! Fear not though, for the pool at the adjacent Park Residences is open to hotel guests while the works are carried out and we can’t wait to see the transformation of the area once the construction is complete. Both the adults and children’s pools at the Park Residences are temperature controlled and offer plenty of sun loungers and ample shade within the leafy gardens. There’s also a 24 hour fitness centre with state of the art cardiovascular equipment and free weights area, and a wellness club offering six treatment rooms. Both venues are unaffected by the construction and are open for business as usual.
Food & Beverage: The Park Rotana offers a number of dining options including the Parkafe and all-day dining option Ginger. The latter entices with an extensive breakfast buffet and a firm focus on superfoods and healthy eating, set against a background of light wood and vibrant green textiles.
Is there anyone in the city who doesn’t know Cooper’s? This pub situated within the Park Rotana complex has become a bit of an Abu Dhabi institution and pandering to their target market of thirsty expats, Cooper’s always seems to be buzzing. Feeling like a typically British pub the decor features dark wood, checkered black and white floors, leather upholstery. This popular haunt presents an extensive bar menu serving up hearty, reasonably priced and generously portioned pub grub (full review here).
Teatro has long been a favourite dining spot of ours. A hugely confident restaurant announcing itself via large red lettering that can be seen all the way from the valet. Presenting a diverse menu of Thai, Indian and Italian flavors under the guise of “East meets West” the food at Teatro is very good and makes for the ideal dining destination for those who don’t want to be tied down to one specific cuisine. Don’t miss the Downtown Tokyo cocktails, wasabi coated prawn tempura, delicate slithers of sashimi, or the show-stopping dessert platter known at the ‘Big Show.’ Give in to Teatro’s charms and you’ll be rewarded with an innovative dining experience (full review here).
As mentioned is our previous reviews of Rotana properties, guests know exactly what to expect from this brand – consistent quality of service and value for money. The Park Rotana is no different and despite the current landscaping works at the pool, the property still makes for a good choice for those visiting Abu Dhabi.
The Park Rotana is more than just a business hotel. With spacious rooms and a location right on the grass of Khalifa Park, this five-star hotel is an ideal place for families and this is why we enjoyed our weekend stay so much. Kids are treated like royalty and with their needs catered too, the adults also get an opportunity to relax.
Location: Al Salam St, Eastern Ring Road, Khalifa Park Area, Abu Dhabi
Social: Instagram / Facebook
Phone: +971 2 657 3333
Out & About UAE were guests of Park Rotana. All views are our own and photographs are © Out & About UAE.