21 New Year’s Day brunches to see in 2021 in Dubai and Abu Dhabi

Round off the festive season with one last indulgent day of food

If your idea of a good start to the year involves music, a hearty meal and time spent with loved ones, then you’re in luck. With January 1 falling on a Friday, a number of dining venues in the UAE are offering special brunches to start the year with a foodie extravaganza.

From detox menus to those that continue to keep the party going, here's a look at some of the best brunches to book on New Year's Day.

In Dubai

Al Nafoorah

The Lebanese joint will be serving a feast of classic Arabic delights for the first day of the year. From cold mezze favourites including baba ganoush and moutabel to hot mezze dishes such as meat sambousek and cheese rukakat, there's a little something for everyone. Guests can also expect soups, shawarma, grilled beef and kebab kheshkhash, as well as an array of desserts such as ashta bil asal and othmalliyeh.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm; Dh199; Jumeirah Emirates Towers, Sheikh Zayed Road; 800 666 353, restaurants@saroodhospitality.com

Bab Al Shams

This resort has a garden brunch for those looking to kickstart 2021 with sunshine and grassy vistas. There are options for both indoor and outdoor seating, and live cooking stations that will be serving healthy, organic treats for those looking for a lighter meal after the extravagance of New Year’s Eve. Meanwhile, children can entertain themselves with plenty of activities, including a petting zoo with a camel and pony rides.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 5pm; Dh450; Al Forsan, Bab Al Shams; 04 809 6194, restaurants@babalshams.com

Casa de Tapas

Those looking to start the year with a Spanish fiesta can head to this lively spot, which will be hosting a live flamenco band and DJ. Guests can sample a selection of hot and cold tapas, and there will also be a “live paella show” – a treat for both the eyes and the tastebuds.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm; Dh335; Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club; 04 416 1800

Farriers

The restaurant in The Meydan Hotel is putting on a brunch with flavours from around the world on the first day of 2021. Indulge in a seafood ice bar, a meat and poultry platter, a pasta station, antipasti, a varied cheese spread and desserts to make you forget about all the woes of 2020. There will also be a dedicated children’s play area with gaming consoles to keep the little ones entertained. There is a 20 per cent discount on reservations paid before Sunday, December 27.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm; Dh249; The Meydan Hotel; 04 381 3111, themeydanhotel.com/festive

Hillhouse Brasserie

The family-friendly venue is inviting guests to enjoy the first day of the year with dips and salads; iced seafood and sushi; small plates of mushroom risotto and Thai-baked sea bass; and a carvery. For dessert, guests can help themselves to a chocolate fountain, rhubarb and custard doughnuts, and sticky toffee pudding.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm; Dh295; Dubai Hills Golf Club; 800 666 353

Hutong

In the spirit of trying something new, Hutong is debuting its Flaming Peking Duck for the first time at its New Year's Day brunch. There will be a dim sum selection and signature dishes, while a saxophonist and DJ Ivan Minuti will keep guests entertained as they celebrate "the start of new beginnings and prosperity in 2021".

Friday, January 1; 12.30 to 4pm; from Dh398; Gate Building 6, DIFC; 04 220 0868, hutong-dubai.com

MasterChef

The restaurant inspired by the television show is cooking up two New Year’s Day brunches that are easy on the pocket. In recognition of the fact that people might have had a pricey New Year’s Eve, the restaurant is offering a 50 per cent discount on both its brunches, which will be featuring a special curated menu by head chef Margarita Vaamonde-Beggs.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm and 7pm to 10pm; from Dh149.50; Millennium Place Marina Hotel, Dubai Marina; 04 550 8111, masterchefdxb.com

Missippi's

Start the New Year right with a sun-soaked, family-friendly brunch pool side at new spot Missippi. Guests can enjoy poolside snacks from a sun lounger while a resident DJ will provide chilled vibes.

Friday, January 1; 12pm to 4pm; from Dh299 for adults, Dh199 for teens, Dh99 for children, kids under 6 eat free; Missippi's, Avani Ibn Battuta; 055 269 7351, MissippisDxb.com

Muchachas Mexican Cantina

The lively Mexican joint is hosting a New Year's brunch that promises to keep the party going. A four-course menu will be serving up plenty of favourites – from guacamole and habanero chicken wings to tacos.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm; from Dh139; Holiday Inn Express, Al Safa; 04 327 5878

Cafe Nikki

For sun, sand and plenty of water views, head to Cafe Nikki in Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai, which will be having a Friday brunch. There will be complimentary pool and beach access and a varied food spread to put you in a holiday-esque mood.

Friday, January 1; 1.30pm to 4.30pm; from Dh425,; Nikki Beach Resort & Spa Dubai, Jumeirah; 04 376 6162; reservations.dubai@nikkibeach.com

Rove Hotels

If you’re looking for a budget option after the extravagance of New Year’s Eve, Rove Hotels has a brunch that won’t break the bank. There will be a sharing platter of sandwich wraps, pastries, salad jars, cold mezzes and juices, followed by a main from the kitchen. Dessert and a cup of tea or coffee wrap up this simple, wholesome meal.

Friday and Saturday; January 1 and 2; 11am-3.30pm; Dh99 for adults, Dh49 for children; The Daily, Rove City Centre, Rove Dubai Marina, Rove Healthcare City, Rove Trade Centre, Rove La Mer Beach; rovehotels.com

Samakje

This seafood restaurant may have launched just a few months ago, but it’s already serving up a veritable spread for the UAE’s discerning diners. For New Year’s Day, try its weekend-style family lunch, with a set menu that includes popular dishes such as lobster kibbeh, batata harra, roasted muhammara and a choice of grilled fish. The restaurant is located at The Pointe, so there are some relaxing water views to go with the meal.

Friday and Saturday, January 1 and 2; noon to 5pm; Dh195; East Marina, The Pointe, Palm Jumeirah; 04 584 6777, samakje.com

TJ's

If you fancy starting your year with hearty comfort food, this JLT cafe has it all. Tuck into pancakes, eggs Benedict and roast beef striploin to start your year on the right note.

Friday, January 1; 2pm to 6pm; from Dh199; Taj JLT; tajhotels.com

The Selfish Bull

This steak and seafood restaurant has put together an elegant four-course menu with all the classics to help you unwind from the celebrations of the night before. Tuck into favourites such as French onion soup, burrata, portobello mushroom stuffed with crab, Australian Wagyu or grilled Canadian lobster, and finish it all off with a New York cheesecake or brownie a la mode. Children under 12 get a special menu for Dh95.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm; prices start at Dh395; Bluewaters Island; 4 399 3638, theselfishbull.com

In Abu Dhabi

Buddha Bar

The venue is hosting a “lazy brunch” to help you ease your way into the New Year. There will be freshly prepared sushi and nigari, delicacies from the Robata charcoal grill and specialities including Chilean sea bass to indulge in as you recline in the restaurant's laid-back ambience.

Friday, January 1; 1pm to 4pm; Dh325; St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort; 02 498 8888, buddhabarbeachabudhabi.com

Cove Beach

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, November 24, 2020.   New destination Cove Beach on Reem Island is getting ready to open– this will be a first look preview (it opens Nov 27)
Victor Besa/The National
Reporter:  Evelyn Lau
Section:  LS
For:  Standalone/Stock

If your idea of starting the New Year involves lounging on a sun bed, Cove Beach at Makers District, Reem Island, has a deal to pique your interest. The newly opened venue is offering a lounger, unlimited beverages and two dishes from a selected menu from 1pm to 4pm. Perfect for those looking for a lighter meal option to start 2021.

Friday, January 1, 1pm to 4pm; Dh299; Makers District, Al Reem Island; 05 639 8789; info@covebeachabudhabi.com

Coya

The Peruvian favourite is keeping the celebratory spirit going well into the New Year with a lively brunch. Guests can tuck into guacamole, ceviche, Wagyu empanadas, sea bass croquettes and more. For mains, choose between four dishes including the Costillas de Res (beef ribs) and the pollo a la parrilla (corn-fed baby chicken), before wrapping up with a dessert platter.

Friday, January 1; 12.30 to 4pm; Dh278 with soft drinks; The Galleria Al Maryah Island; 02 306 7000, coyarestaurant.com

Grills @ Chill’O

Guests can expect a foodie extravaganza from this pool-side venue. There will be eight live stations serving everything from fresh oysters, foie gras, grilled seafood and steaks, and gorgeous views of the Corniche parks to boot.

Friday, January 1; 12.30 to 4pm; from Dh220; Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche; sofitelabudhabicorniche.com

Oak Room

Expect a leisurely, uncomplicated afternoon meal brimming with British dishes. From the signature sourdough with Marmite butter and shared starters to choosing a main course with two sides, there’s a little something for everyone. Dessert followed by a cheese selection will wrap up the first brunch of the year nicely.

Friday, January 1; noon to 5pm; from Dh195; The Abu Dhabi Edition; 02 208 0000, restaurantreservations.auh@editionhotels.com

Olea

Keep it light and healthy on the first day of the year with a “recharging” breakfast at Mediterranean-influenced Olea. There will be sandwiches, detox beverages, sushi, burritos and more to help you reset and start the year feeling refreshed.

Friday, January 1; 8am to 3pm; Dh195; St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort; oleaabudhabi.com

W Abu Dhabi

The Yas Island hotel will be having its popular B.I.G. brunch for those who can't choose just one cuisine. Food comes from the Steam Table, Nikkei House, Mezza Bar, Meat Vault and Tart Van, so guests can expect everything from a mezze spread and Asian flavours to meat cuts, before wrapping up the meal with tarts to satisfy your sweet tooth. There will also be lively music to keep guests entertained.

Friday, January 1; from Dh295; 12.30pm to 4pm; W Abu Dhabi, Yas Island; 02 656 0000

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