The food of love: 9 restaurants in the UAE to head to for Valentine’s Day

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Restaurants around the country are preparing to serve up a feast of love on Valentine’s Day. Whether you are looking for an intimate, proposal-worthy venue, a trendy, sophisticated spot or a romantic meal that will not break the bank, there is something to satisfy every couple’s desires. Here is our pick of some of the best places to celebrate your love. All meals are available on February 14 unless noted otherwise.

Trendy

Catch Dubai

Fairmont Dubai, Sheikh Zayed Road

This New York-style venue is offering a special set menu for a sophisticated – but not stuffy – night out. It includes half-a-dozen oysters and mains such as kale and quinoa salad with sweet chilli soy dressing, miso-sea bass with Cantonese fried rice, and a 48-hour hoisin-braised short rib with sweet potato. You will also get the restaurant’s famous “hit me!” dessert, moulded into the shape of a heart for the occasion.

Dh800 a couple. Call 04 357 1755

Trendy

JW Steakhouse

Marriott Hotel Downtown, Abu Dhabi

Try this new steakhouse and enjoy a chic, romantic evening with a four-course menu. Start with Scottish Loch Fyne salmon, followed by a choice of mains that include pike perch fillet and Australian Wagyu beef. For dessert, dip into a sweet and salty concoction of beetroot and vanilla. If you are feeling energetic after all that, head to the hotel’s popular night spot, Velocity, to dance the night away.

6pm to 11.30pm, Dh280 a person. Call 02 304 7777

Over the top (and proposal-worthy)

The Hideaway, Butcher and Still

Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi at Al Maryah Island

If money is no object – and you want to really impress that special someone – book a night at The Hideaway, an ultra-private dining room in the Butcher and Still restaurant at the Four Seasons. You’ll get exclusive use of The Hideaway, complete with a dinner for two that includes a welcome drink dusted with gold, 100 gold balloons, 100 roses and private live entertainment in the form of 1930s jazz music. The space will also be flooded with white and gold candles. If you want to pop the question, there is no better place to do it.

Minimum spend of Dh15,000. Call 02 333 2700

Over the top (and proposal-worthy)

The Terrace on Level 42

Shangri-La Hotel, Dubai

Book a private dining experience at The Terrace for an unforgettable evening. Enjoy a stunning view of downtown Dubai and the Burj Khalifa as you tuck into a private meal, a five-course set menu including dishes such as lobster and scallop terrine with caviar, tomato, mango dressing and balsamic reduction, and fillet of beef rossini with celeriac purée, foie gras and black truffle.

7pm to midnight. Dh6,000 a couple. Reservations essential. Call 04 405 2703

Beachside dining

BBQ Al Qasr

Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi

For a romantic, beachside experience, reserve a table at BBQ Al Qasr in the capital’s most opulent hotel. Choose a sunset picnic on the beach, or go for a set menu later in the evening. The picnic on the beach includes musical entertainment from a live cellist as you watch the sun go down. Or book a table after sunset and indulge in a three- or five-course meal from a set menu, complete with red roses, candlelight and music.

Picnic from 4.30pm to sunset, Dh520 a couple, including two selected beverages. Set dinner from 7pm to 11pm, Dh1,350 a couple for three courses; Dh1,850 for five, including beverages and complimentary one-way limousine transfer for Abu Dhabi city residents. Call 02 690 7999

Beachside dining

Turquoiz

The St Regis Saadiyat Island Resort, Abu Dhabi

This beachside seafood restaurant has a few options for a romantic evening under the stars. Couples can dine on the beach, in the restaurant or in a private cabana. A four-course set menu will be served, with the options of caviar and selected beverages. Live music will help set the mood.

Dh700 a couple (Dh1,150 with caviar; Dh1,450 with caviar and beverages). The cabana package costs Dh2,500 a couple. Call 02 498 8008

Beachside dining

Anantara The Palm Dubai Resort

The Palm Jumeirah

Chefs at Dining by Design have whipped up a delicious set menu for you to enjoy with the one you love at private sweetheart tabled on the beach, overlooking the Palm Jumeirah. The moonlit meal features a set menu, including oysters and caviar, along with love-themed desserts to finish the night on a sweet note.

Dh3,200 a couple. Call 04 567 8304

On a budget

St Tropez Bistro

Dubai

For a wallet-friendly affair, take your sweetheart to this French bistro at the Mall of the Emirates or Century Village. The dishes on offer include Devon white crab ravioli in a roast tomato, olive beurre blanc with summer micro leaves, and grilled fillet of beef with cauliflower purée. For your dessert, don’t miss the oozing chocolate fondue served with shortbread, strawberries and caramelised marshmallows.

Dh190 per person. February 7 to 14 at Mall of the Emirates (04 341 3415); February 14 only at Century Village

(04 286 9029)

On a budget

Cafe D’Alsace

Yas Island, Abu Dhabi

Head here for a romantic evening, plus the chance to win a sunset cruise for four. The restaurant serve a set menu featuring French cuisine, inclusive of two select beverages. Two lucky couples will also win a cruise, worth Dh500 a couple, through Abu Dhabi’s islands with Captain Tony’s boat tours.

Dh390 a couple. Call 02 496 3412

sjohnson@thenational.ae