I have always been wanting to visit UAE ever since I made my first transit in Middle East a few years ago. To many Asians, I believe we have little clues about the arabian culture. When I was in UAE, several friends asked me if it is safe and afforable to travel around there. Just like Singapore, I think there is no need to fear of travelling alone. The locals are approachable in times when you are lost. While Abu Dhabi is not covered with a train system, travelling around the city by taxi or bus is easy and surprisingly cheaper than Singapore. My accomdation at Sofitel Abu Dhabi was well below S$160/night, which I think it's a great deal.
To be honest, there is pretty much nothing to do in Abu Dhabi, except for the Grand Mosque which I have spent more than half of the day appreciating its beauty. Therefore, I think its worthwhile to get a good hotel to relax and enjoy since the rates are pretty decent in this city.
After hours of travelling from Singapore, it was with great delight to accept an complimentary upgrade to a corner room and be escorted all the way up. When I entered the room, I was pretty much blown away. According to the assistant, this corner room is larger than the usual 42 square metre room and comes with both sea and city view.
I know its difficult to imagine how big the room is if I provide numerical figures. So here comes the pictures and description.
Moving along the walkway from the lounging area, you will find the bathroom on the left and a few longitudinal windows on the right where you can overlook the city.
At the end of the walkway, you will find yourself in the bedroom. The bedroom itself had everything I needed for a comfortable stay. Besides the cozy king-size bed, I do appreicate that they have many power sockets for me to charge my gadgets. You wouldn't get bored if you decide to end your day early and laze in your room. Besides the complimentary wifi, there is a long list of TV channels to choose from. There is also a Bose sound system beside the bed if you like to listen to your playlist.
On the side note, it is worth noting that there is an evening turndown service. If you decide to rest early, it is better to reject or arrange an early turndown service before you leave your room during the day. To make a perfect stay for the guest, the bed will be prepared for the night and the amenities will be replenished during the turndown service. If the pillows provided are not comfortable for you, the housekeeping is ready to offer to a few other selections.
Sea View - From the window beside the bed/in front of the working desk
Whether you love to soak in the water or not,I am pretty sure you would spend longer time than usual in their bathroom. The bathroom is very spacious. It is almost half the size of the entire room. It is tough not to be impressed- they have a huge bathtub, an individual shower stall equipped with rainshower and an individual toilet stall that is also equipped with a bidet. The bathroom is well-stocked with amenities as well. Apart from the usual amenities such as cottons pads and etc, they also provide body scrub pad too. The shower amenities are Estro-branded.
Like many other luxury hotels, Sofitel Abu Dhabi has its own big pool, gym, suana and steam rooms. What's surprising is that they also have their own private beach at the Corniche Road. However, travel by foot to the Corniche beach is crazy. At Abu Dhabi, key places are very far away from each other. Although there is a shuttle bus service to the private beach, I did not free up my time to make a visit (therefore, no picture as well). The shuttle bus also travels to key places like Ferrari World, Yas Mall and Marina Mall (nearby Emirates Palace).
I would definitely recommend Sofitel if you are looking for a good stay in Abu Dhabi. In terms of level of service and aesthetic wise, I think it is way better than Sofitel Singapore and many other business hotel/mid tier luxury hotel that I have been to. Travelling around from Sofitel Abu Dhabi was not a problem for me. While I travelled by taxi or shuttle bus most of the time, I did try to take a public bus to the Grand Mosque. Taking a bus is easy in Abu Dhabi. The bus network is almost similar to a train system network, which can be easily understood.
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