Having been a regular user of the EP since it was first opened - for conferences, exhibitions, concerts and meals - this weekend was our first time to stay there. We had two nights in conjunction with a special deal which included a concert on Friday night. I have always loved the grandeur and scale of the building and the huge internal spaces but have never been particularly impressed with any of the food venues - there is more of an emphasis on formality than food. While the breakfast buffet this weekend had plenty of variety - even wheatgrass! - the experience was not pleasant. The room was overcrowded, with tables close together and people bumping into each other - like an ordinary package tour breakfast. Given the vast spaces in the hotel, I wonder why the Vendome has to be so cramped. People even had to sit out in the lobby!
I think the staff / service has improved over the years - our check-in and check-out was friendly and efficient. A map of the hotel would help, with one's room marked on it. It took us a while to work out the most efficient way to get to the pool! The coral room was fine but don't expect anything special - not nearly as impressive as many other rooms I've stayed in in the UAE.
BUT what bothered me most about the whole experience? Something I could have avoided if I'd read Trip Advisor reviews beforehand. There are no tea or coffee making facilities in the room!!! I've lived in the UAE for 14 years and stayed in most of the high-end hotels and this was a first for me - a very unwelcome first. Who wants to wake up in the morning and have to speak to someone, and then let them into the room in order to get that first cup of tea or coffee! If I'd known, I'd have brought my Nespresso Pixie with me! The cost is not an issue, just the awful start to the day and the great inconvenience. For this reason alone, I would never stay here again.
All in all, we had an enjoyable weekend but there are much better hotels now available in Abu Dhabi. The EP could be great if more thought is given to details that would make a guest's stay more comfortable, and less thought to having 6 stars. Facilities aren't everything!
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Emirates Palace
- Emirates Palace Abu Dhabi
- Emirates Palace Hotel Abu Dhabi