BACKGROUND The grand opening of the property took place on November 2016. The first Palazzo Versace opened in Australia’s Gold Coast in 2000.
WHAT’S IT LIKE? Grand. It resembles a 16th century Italian palace with Arabian elements. Versace scarves and sketches of some of its iconic dresses are framed in the walls of hallways. All the furniture in the hotel is, but of course, designed exclusively by the House of Versace for the property. As for Arabic nuances, images of falcons and peacocks are aesthetically woven into the design and decor of Palazzo Versace Dubai.
Once you pass through security, you enter a lobby that is styled more like a wealthy woman’s tasteful living room. Sofa chairs, upholstered in Versace fabric, have classy ornate trimmings and plump cushions. Besides the imposing 3,000kg Bohemian chandelier in the main lobby, in the Mosaic Lounge there is a 1.5 million-piece mosaic of Gianni Versace, founder of the namesake brand, which is also the logo.
Check-in is at any of the three marble desks in a separate section to the left of the entrance. Walking past it takes you to the East Wing lifts to the rooms. It is here that hints of the Versace fragrance became stronger.
WHERE IS IT? A 15-minute drive from Dubai International Airport brings you to the property, along the shores of Dubai Creek. It is an eight-minute drive from Downtown Dubai.
ROOM FACILITIES I was booked into the Deluxe Versace Creek View twin room (base category; 50 sqm). Both beds are comfortable, large and dressed in powder blue and golden linen with Versace patterns. The two Versace chairs, of the same blue colour, by a small coffee table has cushions with similar print. So does the thick carpeting on the parquet flooring. Even the crockery and cutlery, neatly arranged in a cupboard with the minibar and espresso coffee machine, is Versace. Beside the balcony’s glass doors is a large work desk with a media connectivity panel and a table lamp. There are enough electric sockets by the bedside too, and an easy to operate multi-functional room control panel.
I enjoyed a cappuccino in the balcony of the room that overlooked the pool below. On the day I had checked in, there was a rowing competition in progress. A DJ station was set-up by the pool, whose catchy music travelled all the way up to my room.
The marble bathroom has mosaic wall ornamentation over the tub. There is a separate cubicle with a powerful shower-head. Both are equipped with Versace toiletries. The entrance to the bathroom is through a tiny foyer with a cupboard and full-length mirror.
In addition to the above, all rooms and suites have 55-inch LED TVs, free water bottles and free wifi. Other accommodation categories are Premier room (52 sqm), Executive suite (95 sqm), Grand Executive suite (120 sqm), Grand suite (130 sqm), Signature suite (214 sqm) and the two-storey Imperial suite (1,200 sqm). Only the suites have free access to the Executive Lounge.
RESTAURANTS AND BARS At Vanitas, the Italian restaurant, I had the homemade pasta with creamed pecorino cheese — a bit too dry to my liking. The tiramisu was sumptuous, as was the double shot cappuccino that ended my meal. Mosaic is the earlier mentioned lobby lounge. Enigma serves “Turkish cuisine with a twist”, which is adjacent to Q’s Bar and Lounge that has live entertainment. The other bar is La Vita. A lavish breakfast buffet is served at Giardino. Amalfi is the outdoor space for snacks.
BUSINESS AND MEETING FACILITIES The hotel has a separate entrance to its meeting facilities. The Grand Ballroom can entertain up to 900 guests, three meeting rooms in the same space can hold from 16 to 50 people, and the business centre’s additional three meeting rooms have a maximum capacity for 16 users. It offers secretarial support.
LEISURE FACILiTIES The SPA has seven treatment rooms, a spa suite, nail studio, plunge pools and two Moroccan Hammams. The gym is open round the clock. There are three pools on the property.
VERDICT Perfect for “bleisure” travellers.
PRICE Internet rates for a midweek stay in November started from AED 1,379/₹24,057 for a Deluxe room.
CONTACT Palazzo Versace Dubai, PO Box 128431; tel: +971 4 556 8888; palazzoversace.ae