Stunning setting and Omani hospitality at Jumeirah Muscat Bay – Hotel Insider

The Dubai hotel brand opened its first property in Oman last year

Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

Jumeirah celebrated the official opening of its first property in Oman in December. Set within the new Muscat Bay development on Bandar Jissah bay, the hotel offers the exemplary service levels that are synonymous with Jumeirah properties around the world, in a uniquely Omani setting.

There are 206 rooms and suites, all offering sea views, as well as the Sanctuary Villa, which comes with a sprawling private pool and dedicated butler service, and Oman's first Talise Spa. The surrounding area offers plenty of opportunities for hiking, biking, diving and other water-based sports, but you'll have to drag yourself away from the resort's pristine beach first.

The welcome

After a half-hour drive from Muscat city centre, the latter part consisting of winding mountain roads, Google Maps deposits us at the fenced-off back entrance to the Muscat Bay community.

Jumeirah Muscat Bay is new enough ― it celebrated its grand opening in early December ― for Google not yet to have fully found its bearings. A U-turn and closer attention to signs on the side of the road lead us to our actual destination.

The drive up to the hotel offers ample opportunity to admire its stunning location. Our car is promptly valeted and we are ushered into an airy reception area. Large, contemporary chandeliers hang overhead and intimate check-in desks are situated on either side of the space, but it is the double height windows offering views over Bandar Jissah bay that steal the show.

Check-in formalities are promptly completed by an Omani member of staff, and we make our way to our room.

The neighbourhood

The hotel is at the far end of Muscat Bay, a luxury residential community with grand-looking "hilltop" and "island" villas. Comfortably nestled between the rocky Al Hajar mountains and a stunning cove, the property takes full advantage of its scenic setting, with all rooms facing towards the sea and restaurants that fully capitalise on the views.

The bay is peppered with sculptural rocky outcrops that emerge from the sea, adding to the overall drama of the setting. Hugged by mountains on three sides, it feels entirely removed from the rest of the world.

The room

Rooms are decorated in a muted palette with subtle Arabesque accents. Photos: Jumeirah Muscat Bay

Everything about the hotel is new, but the rooms, in particular, feel very modern. We stay in a premium club room, which is decorated in calming, muted tones interspersed with subtle Arabian-inspired accents. In addition to a desk, there is a corner nook with comfy seating, as well as a balcony that looks out over the sea.

A large bathroom with marble floors houses a sumptuous bath tub and rain shower, and the space can be opened up or closed off to the rest of the room via sliding doors.

The service

Service is smooth throughout the resort and it is particularly pleasant to be able to interact with Omani members of staff.

The scene

The property's adults-only pool

The property has two swimming pools, an adults-only one surrounded by private cabanas, and another that is more child-friendly. However, the beach is the real highlight. Clear waters, pristine sand and double-sized loungers make for an ideal day soaking up the rays. Those looking to take a more active approach can explore the cove on a paddle board or glass-bottomed kayak.

The hotel also offers hiking trips for those looking to keep their adventures on land and Oman’s first Talise Spa for those hoping to turn relaxation levels up a notch.

The food

There are five restaurants, including Tarini, a lounge and terrace overlooking the bay, and Zuka, which offers laid-back beachfront dining. The buffet breakfast at Peridot feels plentiful but not excessive.

Located on the top floor of the hotel, again capitalising on the expansive sea views, Brezza offers Mediterranean cuisine with an Italian slant. Raw starters include spicy tuna tartar with saffron arancini, 6.5 Omani rials (about $17) and red mullet with burnt orange, guacamole and yuzu (OR7). The Angus beef carpaccio with mushroom and artichoke, parmesan and truffle vinaigrette (OR9) is perfectly executed, as is the pepper crusted beef tenderloin (OR20), which is served with mashed potatoes, porcini mushrooms and herbed sauce.

Food and beverage operations are overseen by the charming Sicilian chef Claudio Dieli, who personally recommends and delivers his signature deconstructed tiramisu, and sticks around for an incredibly entertaining chat.

Highs and lows

Oman's newest hotel is set in a secluded bay

The hotel’s location is an undeniable high point. The sharp juxtaposition of mountains and sea serves up dramatic views wherever you are in the property, and makes you feel like you are fully immersed in nature.

Our room, however, has one minor design flaw. A coffee machine is provided and sits on the desk, but the way the electrical socket is placed means it can’t actually be plugged in.

The insider tip

Ask for a room that’s as high up as possible to take advantage of those views.

The bottom line

Prices for a deluxe garden room start from Dh1,683 ($458) per night, excluding taxes. Check-in is at 3pm and check-out is at 12; www.jumeirah.com.

This review was conducted at the invitation of the hotel. It reflects hotel standards during this time, services may change in the future.

Updated: January 09, 2023, 9:26 AM
EDITOR'S PICKS