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Desert Islands Resort & Spa By Anantara

Desert Islands Resort & Spa By Anantara, Abu Dhabi

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Set on one of the world’s most unique offshore wildlife sanctuaries - the island of Sir Bani Yas, Desert Islands Resort & Spa by Anantara taps into Emerati opulence  and is regarded as one of the most luxurious resorts in the region. Home to free-roaming animals, including the near extinct Arabian Oryx, the island offers an unforgettable escape from the world with wildlife-viewing from safari vehicles, horse-back, bicycle or on foot. Positioned on the north shore between a lagoon and the open ocean, guests enjoy access to the facilities of sister resorts Al Sahel and Al Yamm, opening up plenty of appealing possibilities to learn more about activities such as archery falconry and land-sailing. With an appealing selection of luxury rooms, suites and villas – some with private pools, complimented by a spa, on-site stables, and water-sports centre as well as plentiful and varied dining options, it will be a struggle to leave.

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Desert Islands Resort & Spa By Anantara
  • rooms

    Desert Islands rooms are spacious and bright, with floor-to-ceiling windows offering inspiring views. Choose your setting, from a ground floor terrace close to the resort pool to a top-floor balcony with a panorama of ocean.

    Anantara Suites invite luxurious outdoor living, with a private terrace for days in the sun and an additional balcony overlooking the Arabian Gulf. A spacious living room invites you dine and unwind in style.

    Pool villas offer the ultimate island escape, each a walled tropical sanctuary of indulgence. Spend sunny days poolside and nights dining under the stars. Wander across golden sands and into Arabian Gulf waters.

  • facilities & activities

    A private island shared with sister resorts Al Sahel and Al Yamm, Sir Bani Yas is the result of the vision of His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Nature blooms, with a terrain that varies from salt domes to savannah to beach to mangroves, all ripe for adventure. Be inspired by the range of activities on offer both inside and outside the resort.  In resort a shoreline infinity-edge swimming pool is perfect for cooling off, or for something more energetic there is a floodlit tennis court, fitness centre and no end of activities, including kayaking, stand up paddle-boarding, snorkelling, mountain-biking, land-sailing and fishing. The stables are an attraction in themselves with over 30 Arabian horses and plentiful rides and trails through the dunes and bush whether you are a novice or an experienced horse-rider. If you fancy mastering some of the local dishes, Spice Spoons offers Middle Eastern cookery classes and there are history and culture tours. For an altogether more serene experience, the Anantara Spa, overlooking the Arabian Gulf,offers four treatment rooms and a full programme of therapies.

    Of course the setting is the main lure for guests with nature & wildlife drives to see cheetah, hyena, giraffe, ostrich and oryx and wadi walks to see towering rock corridors, fossils & salt domes. There's also the opportunity to experience traditional desert skills such as falconry and archery. 

  • dining

    Guests can choose their preferred board basis, whether it is Bed & Breakfast , Half-Board or Full-Board.

    There are an impressive range of dining options:


    The two-storey Palm is located in the heart of the resort, and offers an extensive breakfast buffet with delights from around the world, as well as Middle Eastern favourites, all washed down with flavoursome Arabic. Order eggs the way you like them from live cooking stations. In the evening there are occasional theme nights which are always popular.

    Seafood and sea breezes at Amwaj restaurant

    Wander down to the beach to this rustic seafood restaurant overlooking the Gulf. Dine on grilled lobster and spicy fish curries. Choose a fine wine from the cellar. On cooler nights a bonfire is lit on the beach, perfect for informal gathering

    Al Shams

    Whatever the time of day, Al Shams can deliver mezze straigtht to your your poolside lounger, or head into the air-conditioned cool of the restaurant. Evenings are all about poolside cocktails and shisha.


    If you are looking for authentic African flavours in a beautiful wild setting,  Savannah, in the heart of the island at Al Sahel is the place to come - inquisitive gazelles and peacocks roam free as you eat mouth-watering steak from the braai. 


    Located on the eastern shore at Al Yamm is this breezy Italian lounge where classic recipes are given contemporary flair, washed down with a fine collection of Italian wines.

    Spice Spoons in Abu Dhabi.

    The region's favourite dishes are inspired by thousand-year-old caravan and seafaring routes. Expect desert grills and ocean catches. Enjoy your creations for lunch and return home with new skills and recipes to try out.

    For something extra special, Dining by Design offers private dining in various settings accorss the island. A popular option is dining Bedouin-style, reclining on majlis seating by an open fire; savour grilled meats and mezze prepared by your personal chef and served by your butler under a blanket of stars. 

  • family

    The resort is perfectly suited to families; rooms can accommodate between 1 and 3 children and there is a popular, well-run Kids Club as well as a Children's Menu. Most of the activitie on offer are suitable for families.

  • location

    The resort is situated on Sir Bani Yas Island, 8km off the coast of Jebel Dhanna, around 2 hours by car from Abu Dhabi. Guests then board a complimentary water taxi that takes 15-20 minutes from the mainland. Transfer from the marina to the resort takes 15 minutes in the resort’s eco-friendly electric bus.

    Alternatively, a 40 minute flight operates every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday by Rotana Jet from Al Bateen Executive Airport in Abu Dhabi directly to Sir Bani Yas Island.

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