When it comes to planning my travels, as for most people, accommodation is a top priority. I spend almost as much time researching hotels as I do the destination itself. Where you stay can make or break a trip away from home, and there’s so much to consider. From how close you want to be from major attractions and nightlife to the hotel facilities, service and reputation, and the list goes on.
There is also of course the cost of the stay to consider. Dubai in particular has long held a reputation as somewhere that doesn’t have much to offer in the way of mid-range accommodation. Luxury resorts with premium service are plentiful, as are inexpensive, basic hotels, but for plenty of travellers, neither of these options are appealing or practical, and they need a mid-range option.
For some, the solution came in the form of Airbnb. The San Francisco based start-up, which allows people to rent out their homes, or even just a room, to travellers was officially sanctioned by Dubai authorities back in 2016, and seemed to be the perfect solution, offering reasonably priced stays alongside an on-the-ground experience in a Dubai neighbourhood. Where better to go for a home away from home than, well, someone’s home?
Those wanting to rent out their properties have to register with the local tourism authority and have all their paperwork in order. It’s a much stricter process than in other parts of the world, where the sharing economy that’s enabled Airbnb has been established for longer.
Personally though, I don’t think that Airbnb stays are the answer. When I go on holiday, I want to feel like I’m really on holiday, rather than as a guest in someone else’s home. I look forward to all the joys of staying in a hotel - accessing facilities like a good gym, a place to grab a bite to eat, being able to dip in a swimming pool or enjoy a spa.
Fortunately, I have recently found a hotel brand in Dubai that offers a solid mid-range option: Rove Hotels. I’d recommend these properties to anyone. They’re really different from every other hotel I’ve visited in Dubai - the decor is cool and trendy, with lots of colour and quirky design touches. The rooms are spacious and comfortable, with free Wi-Fi, plus a 24-hour gym, laundry service, and even a swimming pool, as standard in each property.
The hotels are located in key locations throughout Dubai. I really like staying at Rove Trade Centre, because it’s the perfect middle ground between all the sights of old Dubai - Dubai Creek, the souks, Bastakiya - and new Dubai, including Burj Khalifa and The Dubai Mall. When I want to be right in the middle of all the action, I head for Rove Downtown, located in one of the city’s busiest locales.
If you want to be even closer to old Dubai, and to Dubai airport as well, Rove City Centre and Rove Healthcare City are good options too, with the same great amenities and the same affordable room rates. You can also save money if you book online at rovehotels.com.
I also think that having mid-range offers is changing the way we travel too. Rove Hotels are a home away from home, but unlike luxury resorts, you don’t feel like you have to spend all of your holiday confined to where you’re staying. Instead, when you book into a Rove Hotels property, the dynamic setting and central location will encourage you to get out there and explore more.
Adam H. is a writer and an expert on travel and hospitality trends.