Those in the capital looking to usher in 2021 in style will be spoilt for choice this year. With New Year’s Eve falling on a Thursday, top restaurants in Abu Dhabi have launched packages and set menus to cater to every appetite. Whether you’re looking for a relaxed affair or a foodie extravaganza, here’s a look at some of the deals you can book now.
With expansive indoor seating and a terrace that offers great views, Alba Terrace makes for a chic and cosy spot to ring in the New Year. For the occasion, the Mediterranean-style venue will have live entertainment and will serve a 10-plate sharing menu featuring gourmet creations like burrata, tournedos rossini, a French-style steak, and chestnut meringue tart with hazelnut cream.
Thursday, December 31; any four hours between 7pm and 2am; prices start at Dh350; The Abu Dhabi Edition Al Bateen; 02 208 0000, www.albaterrace.com
Those looking for more of a party vibe can head to Annex, a multi-level space within The Abu Dhabi Edition, with the rooftop area offering excellent views of the Corniche. There will be light bites such as the steamed bao buns, shrimp tacos, pulled beef nachos and beef sliders served, while diners are treated to hip hop and RnB beats courtesy of DJ Eyjey.
Thursday, December 31; any four hours between 10pm and 2am; prices start at Dh398; The Abu Dhabi Edition Al Bateen; 02 208 0000; www.annexabudhabi.com
The chic restaurant has put together a six-course menu for discerning Abu Dhabi diners wanting to welcome the New Year with French flair. Guests can tuck into gourmet options like foie gras terrine, burrata, lobster tail and black Angus beef tenderloin, followed by a dessert of Guanaja coffee chocolate bar and artisan chocolate bon bons. After the meal is over, the festivities continue at the NYE Masquerade party at Sofra to witness the final countdown with fireworks.
Thursday, December 31; 7pm onwards; prices start at Dh599, with a Dh100 discount for bookings before Tuesday, December 15; Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri; 02 509 8555; firstname.lastname@example.org
Cabana Beach Bar and Grill
The picturesque beachfront destination is taking dining in the sand to a whole new level with a "dugout dinner" for New Year's Eve. Diners looking for something new can welcome 2021 in a posh setting – think candles and cushions – on the sand itself. There will be a five-course menu served as guests enjoy the sound of the waves lapping the shores. There are only 10 available spaces for the experience.
Those who don't quite fancy dinner on the sand can upgrade to a private cabana, fashioned as an igloo, on the beach. Both experiences can accommodate a maximum of four people.
Thursday, December 31; 9pm to midnight; Dh5,000 for the dugout dinner, Dh6,000 for the igloo experience; St Regis Abu Dhabi; 02 694 4444; www.stregisabudhabi.com
The popular Peruvian restaurant is ringing in the New Year with an extravagant "Glitz & Glamour" themed bash. The venue will be filled to the brim with chrome balloons and silver and iridescent tinsel curtains, while a resident DJ will be on the decks keeping diners entertained. For sweeping views of Al Maryah Island, there's a minimum spend of Dh1,200 from the a la carte menu for a seat on the venue's terrace or the Pisco Lounge sofas. Guests can also be a part of the festivities from the main tables with a minimum spend of Dh800.
Thursday, December 31; 8pm to midnight; Dh1,200 minimum spend from the a la carte menu for the terrace and Dh800 for the tables inside; Four Seasons at The Galleria on Al Maryah Island; www.coyarestaurant.com; 02 306 7000
Grills @ Chill’O
Located on the eighth floor of the Sofitel Abu Dhabi, this relaxed pool-side Mediterranean restaurant offers some fine views of the Corniche. And guests can enjoy those views over an elegant four-course meal comprising dishes like seafood salad with Boston lobster and Alaskan king crab, cream of green pea soup and braised wagyu beef cheek.
Thursday, December 31; 8pm to midnight; prices start at Dh295; Sofitel Abu Dhabi Corniche; www.sofitelabudhabicorniche.com
Those looking to start their New Year with a bang can head over to the fine dining Chinese restaurant in Emirates Palace, which has put together a menu brimming with signature dishes. Tuck into a dim sum platter that includes gold leaf har gau, before indulging in dishes like the black pepper crab meat puff, roasted Peking duck salad, charcoal-grilled Chilean seabass and wok-seared Canadian lobster with bamboo shoots, among others. The interior of the restaurant is chic and modern, while the spacious outdoor terrace provides some of the best views of the city skyline.
Thursday, December 31; 6pm to midnight; prices start at Dh688 per person; Emirates Palace Abu Dhabi; 02 690 7739; email@example.com
The easy-going American kitchen has a sharing-style brunch for diners to indulge in as they count down to 2021. Tuck into Normandy oysters, truffle pizza and slow-cooked salmon to your heart's content. After dinner, the establishment is offering guests complimentary access to Stratos, the revolving restaurant, between 10pm and 3.30am for glittering city views.
Thursday, December 31; 7pm to 10pm; prices start at Dh250; Le Royal Meridien Abu Dhabi; 800 101 101; firstname.lastname@example.org
For a casual way to greet the New Year, head over to the relaxed Irish joint which will be hosting a barbecue-themed dinner. A solo guitarist and singer will be providing all the entertainment you need, and there’s plenty of outdoor seating to make the most of the cooler weather.
Thursday, December 31; 8pm to 2am; prices start at Dh199; Le Royal Meridien Abu Dhabi; 02 695 0515; email@example.com
Saadiyat Beach Club
Feast on a gala dinner under the stars at this beachfront destination. Besides having outdoor and indoor seating, the venue has the option to choose between seaside seating and special VIP cabanas. There will be live entertainment and activities to keep the little ones busy. Meanwhile, the international sharing style menu will include a lot of meaty favourites - from seafood platter to meats with sides - and tarts and brownies to finish.
Shangri-La New Year’s Eve Masquerade
Those looking for a feast of epic proportions can check out the hotel’s elaborate masquerade-themed buffet dinner. Diners are bound to be spoiled for choice with myriad live stations – from grilled seafood to noodle soup and teppanyaki. There will be mains like the braised lamb shank, duck leg confit and chicken fricassee, Indian flavours such as lamb biryani and tandoori murgh tikka, a charcoal grill and an Arabic corner to indulge in. The feast takes place at Sofra so diners are guaranteed views of the fireworks over the canal at the stroke of midnight.
Thursday, December 31; 7pm onwards; prices start at Dh599, with Dh100 off for those booking before Tuesday, December 15; Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri; 02 509 8555; firstname.lastname@example.org
For some nice views of Abu Dhabi, you can't go wrong with the revolving restaurant at Le Royal Meridien Abu Dhabi. The fine dining joint has panoramic views as far as the eye can see and, for New Year's Eve, is hosting a Phantom of the Opera supperclub. Feast on dishes like tuna sashimi, kale salad and turkey croquettes as you take in the glittering skyline.
Thursday, Friday 31; 6pm onwards; prices start at Dh495; Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi; 02 695 0490; email@example.com
If it’s good quality meat in a fine dining setting you’re craving, this steakhouse has a gala dinner that’s worth your while. There will be a seafood ice bar, caviar, prime rib carvery and salmon coulibac carvery, as well as live entertainment to whisk you into the New Year.
Thursday, December 31; 8pm to midnight; prices start at Dh295; Southern Sun Abu Dhabi; 02 818 4888; www.tsogosun.com
Zuma Abu Dhabi
The popular Japanese restaurant will be having two sittings for New Year’s Eve. Those with children can opt for the earlier sitting at 7pm while the second sitting starts at 9.30pm. Either way, guests will be able to dine on favourites – from the sushi to the maki rolls to the tempura – from the a la carte menu, with a minimum spend of Dh1,000 per person. There’s also an option to book a table in the bar area for Dh2,000, for up to four guests.
Thursday, December 31; 7pm onwards; minimum spend of Dh1,000 per person; The Galleria Al Maryah Island; 02 401 5900; firstname.lastname@example.org