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Al Bustan Rotana Hotel - Dubai, UAE

Great for Businessmen, Not so Great for Leisure Travelers


Al Bustan Rotana Hotel in Dubai, UAE Located just minutes from Dubai International Airport, Al Bustan Rotana Hotel, a member of The Leading Hotels of the World, was big on service (that is, after they failed to pick me up at the airport as planned) and offered comfortable rooms at a reasonable price. While not exactly a luxury hotel in Dubai I would recommend to leisure or holiday travelers, I do say it is a perfect luxury hotel in Dubai for the business traveler.

First Impression/Lobby: My first impression was their failure to pick me up from the airport as planned, but once I pulled into the hotel entrance and was quickly greeted by the bellman who welcomed me and retrieved my bags, that issue behind me. The lobby was as I expected of a luxury hotel in Dubai, marble floors, a tall ceiling that was open to the upper floors, a water fountain, palm trees and other greenery, and an overall luxurious feeling. It wasn’t the over-the-top decor like some five-star hotels in Dubai, but instead it was done with class and elegance.

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Reception: Checking in at Al Bustan Rotana was quick and easy, as it should be at luxury property. Efficient and welcoming, there isn’t much more that I could have asked for, that is other than a late check-out, which they agreed to almost instantly. Now, was it because they were trying to make up for the missed pickup at the airport or that was their standard, I am not sure, but I left the front desk, pleased I had selected the Al Bustan Rotana for this trip to Dubai.

The Room: My Classic King room was located on the third floor and came with access to the Club Lounge. Even though the room was just basic king room, it was bright and fresh, and felt larger than it really was. I think that had to do with the large window, dazzling red drapes, light colored carpet and brilliant white ceiling.

Along with king-sized bed, there were two off-white, upholstered, high-back side chairs; a built-in work desk with a matching upholstered and wood chair; a small coffee table, a large armoire and two solidly built nightstands. The wood furniture and trim in the room ranged from a medium cherry color to a medium dark brown, both of which gave the room a rich, yet warm feel.

The bathroom was the typical old-style marble and tile hotel bathroom with one basin sink, a shower/tub combo, a toilet and bidet. The only upscale things about the bathroom were the plush towels and the L'Occitane amenities.

And talking about upscale, the mini-bar was stocked with high-end liquors like Belvedere Vodka and Bombay Sapphire Gin. If that is not a sign of a luxury hotel, I am not sure what is.

However, even with their attempt at total luxury with upscale amenities and liquors, they failed to offer wireless service and only had the now outdated, broadband internet service.

None-the-less, the room was surgical room clean and luxury hotel comfortable.

Room Service: Similar to many five-star and luxury hotels in Dubai, the room service menu at Al Bustan Rotana had a fair variety of Arabic, Indian and Western dishes available. What impressed me the most is that placing my order was a breeze and the response time was incredibly fast.

The presentation was on par for a business hotel, meaning not much in the way of presentation, but the quality and taste of the food (I had a spicy Chicken Tandoori) was impressive, as was the portion size. Overall, the room service department’s service and food left me fulfilled and impressed!

Housekeeping: A clean room, consistent turndown service, everything as it should be, what more could I ask for? Housekeeping at Al Bustan Rotana in Dubai rated high on our scale. The only area of improvement I saw would be a quicker response time when I requested additional towels.

Restaurants: No one could ever claim they could not find something good to eat at Al Bustan Rotana. With at least seven different dining options, I can easily and confidently say, there is something for everyone! A brief rundown of the restaurants at Al Bustan Rotana:
• Blue Elephant “Best Far Eastern Restaurant” in Dubai
• Benihana an American-Japanese teppanyaki restaurant
• Rodeo Grill and Bar, a fine dining steakhouse
• Mawal Lebanese cuisine plus belly dancing and live music
• Choices offers International buffet-style dining during the day and some nights their buffet focuses on certain cuisines: Seafood, French, Mexican, and even Moules & Frites (mussels and fries).
• Gazebo is the lobby lounge and café
• Aquaris, a pool side snack bar

A very impressive list, I think you would agree! While I was there, I tried the Blue Elephant and agree their food (and atmosphere) is amazing. A must visit if you love Thai food.

Pool/Spa/Activities: Al Bustan Rotana offers an array of activities including an outdoor pool, a children’s pool, a squash court, tennis courts, a fully equipped health club and an outdoor Jacuzzi. While I did not have the opportunity to use the pool, I was not all too disappointed. Its location with the hotel building surrounding it and the small and cramped size, did nothing to entice me to use it. Luckily I was here for business and not leisure. Had that been the case, I would have been sorely let down. As I mentioned earlier, Al Bustan Rotana is not a hotel I would recommend to leisure travelers.

Check-Out: Just like registration, my departure was just as quick and just as smooth. My bill was presented to me error free and with just a swipe of my credit card, my signature and their warm, heartfelt thank you, I was on my way. This is what I call true five-star service!

Overall Impression: Al Bustan Rotana is a wonderful hotel and offers everything a business traveler needs; however, I think a leisure traveler would be underwhelmed with the leisure activities, location and surroundings. I give the Al Bustan Rotana our rating of between bombastic and not.

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