Delivery deadlines are looming but there is still time to buy your holiday presents the easy way: online. Here are five M favourites, which deliver anywhere in the world. Liberty This iconic London emporium, renowned for its exemplary customer service, is a definitive source for stylish, sophisticated gifts for grown-ups, from designer fashions (including their exclusive Hermès For Liberty line), classic and contemporary homeware and cult beauty and men's grooming ranges (Kiehls, Laura Mercier), plus their famous Liberty-print garments, accessories and notebooks. Standard international shipping costs are Dh153, which cover multiple items. See www.liberty.co.uk M recommends: Caesar Liberty Print A5 Journal, Dh184
mywardrobe.com A fantastic one-stop shop for clothes, shoes and accessories for men and women, this site has a huge range of current-season stock by designers including Miu Miu, Vivienne Westwood and Anya Hindmarch. There's a sale section with up to 70 per cent off selected items and a department devoted to gift ideas. International delivery takes two to eight working days. Shipping quotes for each destination are listed on the site. M recommends: Mulberry Midnight Cracked Metallic Ava clutch bag, Dh1,810
Persephone Books The online store for one of our favourite London bookshops, Persephone reprint neglected, lost classics by 20th century (mainly women) writers, including Virginia Woolf and Noel Streatfeild. Each of the 86 titles, ranging from novels and poetry to diaries and cookery books, are presented in smart, plain dove-grey jackets with vintage fabric endpapers and matching bookmarks. The books cost Dh61 each, or you can choose to send a title of your choice every month (Dh331 for six months, Dh663 for 12 months). International delivery costs from Dh25 per book. See www.persephonebooks.co.uk M recommends: Hostages To Fortune by Elizabeth Cambridge, Dh61
Reform School For unique and seriously cool design-related gifts, this California-based company is a real find. Their school-themed online shop features a diverse collection of homeware, posters and prints, stationery, toys and craft materials made by independent designers with an emphasis on sustainable art. There's also a brilliant Lost & Found section featuring fun and vintage finds, such as the 1970s-style Vladmaster Viewmaster and even Amish-made scooters. They ship internationally via UPS once a week - for lead times and costs, see www.reformschoolrules.com M recommends: Paint-your-own nesting dolls, Dh44
Cox and Cox
From traditional wooden toys to chic homeware and outdoor accessories (check out their lovely paper candle lanterns), this is the site for one-off finds and gifts for hard-to-buy-for people. Each item is beautifully photographed with a detailed description and suggestions for possible recipients, and the only difficulty we faced when ordering was resisting the temptation to fill the basket for ourselves. For details on delivery times and costs, call or e-mail their exceptionally friendly staff. See www.coxandcox.co.uk
M recommends: Set of six vintage record coasters, Dh122
Yogalosophy, Abu Dhabi If you are the kind of person who likes to unwind and limber up by bending and twisting a couple of times a week then chances are you have found Abu Dhabi sorely lacking in opportunities to strike a warrior pose. Unlike in Dubai, until recently there has been only one contemporary yoga studio - the much-loved Yoga Tree off Khaleej al Arabi and 11th - with limited space and classes that are often full by the time you arrive. It also closes for several months in the summer, leaving devotees few options other than home practice or a smattering of classes at hotels and health centres around town.
Enter Yogalosophy, the One to One Hotel's new yoga studio that's now officially open. The centre has eight teachers and runs up to five daily classes, including the softer hatha version and the more challenging ashtanga. There are also ladies-only options. And, in two firsts for the capital, there are three weekly one-hour "power lunch" classes, from 12.30pm to 1.30pm, as well as a Friday morning ashtanga/vinyasa class for all levels from 11am to noon.
"One studio is simply not enough," says Natascha Enriquez, One to One's recreation manager and a yoga enthusiast. "I think the problem here is you almost never get a proper space, unless you work with a hotel or a fitness centre."
Tucked into a bright, airy room on the third floor of the villa next to the hotel's nightclub, Cubes, the studio features one mirrored wall, an expanse of windows and almost four-metre high ceilings. Mats and towels are provided, and there are an assortment of classes for beginner, intermediate and advanced students.
Yogalosophy's Abu-Dhabi-born director, Laila Dajani, was a popular instructor at Yoga Tree before leaving her job as a schoolteacher and turning to her passion full-time last summer. Dajani, who is part Croatian and part Palestinian, earned her qualifications in Canada and Germany. Through the centre, she hopes to help more Abu Dhabi residents - even those who have never tried yoga before - experience its benefits.
"I really took time to structure the timetable so everyone feels like they're being challenged enough, but not intimidated," she says.
Ann Marie McQueen
Ninety-minute yoga classes at Yogalosophy cost Dh45 for members of the Village Club gym and Dh60 for non-members. One-hour classes are Dh30/Dh40 and 10-class packages cost Dh400/Dh550. Contact the Village Club at 02 495 2070.
Following the success of its classes that began this month (the last one in November is on Monday at 7.30am), the Emirates Arthritis Foundation will continue its yoga sessions throughout December. The classes offer a therapeutic solution for those suffering from arthritis - or anyone interested in gentle exercise - and cost Dh40 for one hour, with 25 per cent of the fee donated to the foundation, a non-profit organisation that strives to raise awareness of the condition. The classes will take place on December 7 and 21 at 7.30am and December 14 and 28 at 5pm at the helipad area, Festival Marina, Dubai Festival City. Call 04 423 1470 or visit www.arthritis.ae
Those manicures and massages all add up, so if you're looking to soothe your soul without breaking the bank, make the most of the great half-price offer at the Thai Privilege Spa in Jumeirah. Until December 4, they are offering a flat 50 per cent discount on all spa and salon services to celebrate Eid and National Day. So for example, a Traditional Thai Massage - which usually costs Dh350, can be enjoyed for just Dh175, or get a blow dry and manicure for just Dh100. Now that feels good.
Call 04 438 9679 or see www.thaiprivilegespadubai.com.
M IS ALL ABOUT
LuxeCouture: Souk Madinat, Dubai, 04 423 0633
Magrudy's: Al Wahda Mall, Abu Dhabi, 02 443 7172 and other locations
Ralph Lauren: Mall of the Emirates, 04 341 4200
S*uce: Marina Mall, Abu Dhabi, 02 681 8650
The Village Mall: Jumeirah Beach Road, Dubai, 04 344 8204
Villa Moda Men's: Gate Village, DIFC, Dubai, 04 382 5160
HOT TROPICS Carolina Herrera: Dubai Mall, 04 339 8132 Oscar de la Renta: Dubai Mall, 04 339 9005 Prada: For locations, see www.prada.com
TREND ALERT Alexander McQueen: Dubai Mall, 04 339 8760 Boutique 1: The Walk, Jumeirah Beach Residence, Dubai, 04 425 7888 Jean Paul Gaultier: Dubai Mall, 04 339 8249 Jimmy Choo: Dubai Mall, 04 339 8925 and other locations Ralph Lauren: Dubai Mall, 04 330 8005 and other locations Stella McCartney: Dubai Mall, 04 339 9179
BEAUTY Make-Up Etc: Palm Strip Mall, Jumeirah Beach Road, Dubai, 04 345 5747 Dermalogica: Dubai Mall, Dermalogica, Dubai Mall, 04 339 8250