The C Central Resort The Palm Dubai on the cascading outer crescent island is at the heart of the action, yet somehow far enough to feel like a beach getaway.
The National checks into the Palm Suite for a weekend stay.
The quirky lobby offers a more eclectic introduction to Dubai. The gilded statues and over-hanging plants give a warm creative welcome to the hotel.
This and the mixed array of furniture provide an instantly homely vibe.
The reception staff are warm and inviting, despite a moment of confusion over the whereabouts of the valet attendant. They are helpful and polite, providing my husband and I with all the necessary information.
The hotel sits just off Crescent Road, meaning the Palm Jumeirah Boardwalk and Aquaventure Waterpark are a stone's throw away. The location is great for anyone wanting the option to visit the busier parts of town.
C Central is tucked away from the main street. Like much of the country, development and construction are part of the scenery, but the hotel’s views are predominantly of the sea and the Palm Bay area. We barely notice the sprouting buildings around us.
We venture to Palm West Beach, which has a lot of high-end restaurants and is just a short taxi ride away, but we're glad to escape the hustle and bustle later in the evening.
We're staying in the Palm Suite, which offers views across the water, and sits at the top of the hotel. This room is spacious and well equipped with all the mod cons you might need for the most comfortable stay, including all-important fluffy bathrobes.
The room has distinct sections – a dining table and a hosting area, with a separate toilet. The main room has a comfy sofa on a parallel glass balcony, making for the best of the views across the sea.
The standout feature is the bathroom, which has a perfectly placed window for baths with a view, alongside double basins and a walk-in shower. For the more forgetful traveller, the hotel provides for every need, including eco-loafers and toothbrushes.
The staff are informative and helpful – from the reception to the beach area. They are there to help and greet us in every lobby passing. Despite our short stay, everything feels familiar.
The goodbye is particularly memorable, with staff keen to know if anything could have made our stay better – there is not.
The resort is not sprawling, so locations are within easy reach. There is a convenient shallow pool for children and another deeper pool for adults. Guests can make use of the beach area and have direct access to paddle board rentals and other water sports activities.
Inside, there is a large playroom for children on the first floor, which can be opened on request. There is also a fully stocked gym on the eighth floor offering panoramic views during workouts.
The hotel has two restaurants: the C Grill Bar and Waves, the all-day dining restaurant, which we opt for for breakfast and dinner. The dining area spills into the lobby, meaning it's where the buzz is for dinner.
The buffet offers a good selection of foods from across different regions of cuisines. Julias, the maitre’d, is wonderfully attentive, making sure we don't miss out on the pasta station and tacos.
Despite not being much of a dessert person, they are a highlight of my dining experience. There is a great variety and it's clear they have been made with a lot of care and attention.
The choice in the buffet breakfast is everything you'd expect – a handy egg station and a spread to satisfy even the fussiest eater.
Highs and lows
The location is a big plus, the only downside is probably the construction in the area, so the potential is still brewing.
The insider tip
The spa on the eighth floor has a balcony Jacuzzi, which is a real gem in the hotel, offering up beach views from a more private enclave.
For those looking for a relaxed and smaller, family-friendly resort with all the conveniences, this is a good place.
The bottom line
Room rates start at Dh900 per night, plus taxes; check-in is at 3pm and checkout is at midday; central-hotels.com/hotels/c-central-resort-the-palm.
This review was conducted at the invitation of the hotel and reflects hotel standards during this time. Services may change in the future.