A Family Staycation In Ajman
Having lived in the UAE for over 6 years I’ve made it a family mission to actually visit all of the Emirates beyond Dubai (embarrassed to say we haven’t done so already). First on the list? Ajman. With beautiful beaches and a slower pace of life, the smallest of the Emirates is only about a half hour drive from downtown Dubai (when the traffic is ok – DON’T attempt it during rush hour!). With school hols in full swing and daddy stuck in the office, a group of mamas decided to brave a solo staycation with kids at The Fairmont, Ajman – 2 days of splashing in the pool, collecting crabs on the beach and causing havoc at the breakfast buffet…
So, four mamas and seven excited kids hit the road, and, hundreds of games of ‘I-Spy’ later, arrived at Ajman’s Corniche (where little Arthur, aged 4, convinced we’d travelled very, very far asked what country we were in and what language we’d need to speak…).
The Fairmont Ajman is a gorgeous 5 Star property right on the beach – a fab choice for families (and with much lower prices than its sister property on The Palm, Dubai). We stayed in a suite which meant that the kids could have their own space in a living area, while I got a night of blissful sleep in a humungous Egyptian cottoned bed. Or at least that was the plan (all three of them decided that mama’s bed was big enough to share, but hey – we were on holiday so what the heck). A huge bathroom with walk-in rain shower and bath was separated from the bedroom by a floor-to-ceiling window which inspired the kids to perform a bathtime ‘show’ every evening that I was privileged to have a front row seat at! A balcony (which was strictly out of bounds to my curious trio) looked out over a gorgeous pool area and the beach and ocean beyond. The room was awesome. It was dark when it needed to be, super comfy and kitted out with everything you need – beautiful toiletries, fluffy towels and nespresso capsules to deal with the inevitable 5am wake-ups (yes, even despite the dark).
We’re a fairly food obsessed family so breakfast in a hotel is always a big deal, and the Fairmont Ajman didn’t disappoint! With all the usual brekkie fare plus a pancake and waffle station, we piled our plates high and filled up for a day outdoors.
One of the best things about the hotel is the huge infinity pool that stretches out in front of the beach, and the great little kids pool attached with splashy fountains and flooring for delicate little feet. Oh, and a swim-up bar which, sadly, we only went near when our kids decided to make snorkels from straws…
While the mamas lounged, the minis splashed and had a whale of a time – watched over by lovely lifeguards (with a lot of patience and a sense of humour!). The hotel offers a trunk full of toys on the beach which children are welcome to raid and use on the sand or in the pool (water-guns included – watch out, mama!). At lunchtime, we ate burgers and sushi poolside at ‘salt and sea’ and the littles uncovered the kids club. Even though it’s really nothing more than a room with toys and a TV, it has mega friendly staff who were happy to indulge them in face-painting, colouring, movies and play – and a good hour out of the sun.
Afternoons at the Fairmont Ajman were our favourite time of day, as the sun dipped in the sky we all headed to the beach where the low tide allowed the discovery of hermit crabs and shellfish and plenty of running about (and tiring out!) before heading to our rooms. And after the bath time/bedtime shenanigans, with excellent hotel babysitters in place, the mamas were able to hang out and chill on one of our balconies, order room-service and soak up some much needed wind-down time.
Less than an hour away from Dubai, our break in Ajman felt like a mini holiday (Arthur is still certain that we vacationed somewhere very far). The Fairmont is a great choice for families – with really good rates, great rooms and a lovely pool and beach area, plus a team of staff who go the extra mile to make sure you all feel happy and looked after! The perfect staycation option within the UAE. We’re still working our way through the Emirates but there’s no doubt that we’ll be back.
For bookings and information visit www.fairmont.com/ajman