ABU DHABI // Visitors are being offered the chance to experience traditional Emirati culture and heritage at a new desert retreat.
The spacious and stylish Arabian Nights Village has been officially opened in Al Khatem, about an hour from Abu Dhabi city, by Sheikh Sultan bin Tahnoon, the chairman of the Tourism and Culture Authority.
The resort is the size of 12 football pitches and has 30 double rooms, five one-bedroom suites and a three-bedroom suite, all tailored to give guests a glimpse of the past.
Visitors can experience traditional pursuits such as falconry, henna painting and camel racing.
More modern activities on offer include dune bashing, quad biking and sand boarding.
The retreat also features a 200-square-metre infinity swimming pool, shops and a restaurant offering local cuisine.
“This is a stunning development and a sterling example of private-sector initiative and investment which we hope others will emulate,” Sheikh Sultan said.
“The village raises the bar on traditional overnight desert accommodation and we believe it will resonate well and be fully appreciated by residents and visitors alike.
“I want to congratulate the owners for their attention to detail in all aspects of construction, design and interiors, as well as their food and beverage offering and efforts towards environmental preservation. The village brings a whole new dimension to desert stays.”
Am Simreen, managing partner of Arabian Nights Village, said: “The very tapestry of Abu Dhabi’s culture is intertwined with the desert and hospitality.
“In years past, any traveller who came across a desert camp was offered three days of food and shelter. This kindness formed the foundation of Abu Dhabi’s welcoming ethos, and today we open a new chapter in this story.
“Al baytbaytak, our home is your home. Every step of the journey with us is designed to invoke an emotional response to allow visitors to be transported away from their daily lives to somewhere new and magical.”
The resort is powered by four state-of-the-art sound-proofed generators and has a specialist water-treatment plant that extracts and treats water.
Drinking water comes from a 65-metre-deep well. The village also uses treated waste water to irrigate trees and its landscaped gardens.