“Christmas isn’t a season. It’s a feeling.” Edna Ferber
Tis the season to be jolly fa la la la la la la la, it’s that time of the year again when you drag a fir tree with a trail of falling pine needles into your home, light open fires and battle against the other million shoppers in shops that have everything half price by Boxing Day. Unless you are in UAE that is, where the festive season is more Carrefour fake trees, empty malls and a tad warmer.
All the hotels here are embracing the season and promoting their festive activities such as Christmas markets, gingerbread making, Christmas Tree lighting ceremonies and of course festive menus featuring Christmas Day brunches and elaborate New Year’s Eve banquets. I was invited to sample the festive set menus at the Fairmont Bab Al Bahr hotel available at Marco Pierre White and Frankie’s Italian restaurants ahead of the launch later this month.
We tried a delicious mix of dishes featuring meat, seafood, foie gras, pasta and even some black truffle topped delights, served as bite size appetizers and main courses, vegetarian options were also available and very tasty too. Even though there wasn’t any turkey or brussel sprouts there was some spiced mulled wine and miniature homemade Christmas puddings with brandy sauce and vanilla ice cream. We finished off with Bonet, a delightful mix of Amaretto, vanilla and rum
Available from 21st – 30th December, both restaurants will be offering their own style of festive inspired dishes in special three-course set dinners. British festive flair will be the order of the day at Marco Pierre White’s while Frankie’s will bring some Italian gastronomic delights to the festive season.
The Fairmont’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony will take place in the hotel’s fabulous lobby tomorrow night, Tuesday 8th December from 7.00pm-8.00pm. Festive cheer will be abundance with carol singers singing Christmas favourites, eggnog, mince pies and of course Santa will be on hand to give gifts to the younger children. For a minimum donation of AED 10, guests can purchase festive ornaments then add their own personal messages and place them on the tree. All proceeds will be donated to the Special Care Centre, Abu Dhabi.
The hotel offers a Christmas ‘Turkey To Go’ experience which we sampled a couple of years ago. Taking all the pressure of buying the large bird and cooking it at home, the Marco Pierre White and Chocolate Gallery chef’s do all the hard work for you, all you need to do is select roast turkey or angus beef strip loin with all the trimmings and add a range of mouthwatering festive puddings including mince pies or Yule logs and pick it up on Christmas Day morning, easy peasy lemon squeezy!
You can take all the hassle out of the festive season and celebrate Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day with festive buffets, brunches and dinners at CuiScene Restaurant, Frankie’s Italian Restaurant and Bar and Marco Pierre White (MPW) Steakhouse and Grill. Those wanting to see in the New Year in style can do so at the Fairmont too with a mighty seven-course dinner at MPW or those who find that daunting can opt for a five-course meal at Frankie’s or drinks and dancing at Chameleon bar and see in 2016 with a fantastic firework display. Visit the Fairmont Bab Al Bahr website here for all the festive happenings, timings and prices.
The biggest problem is choosing what elaborate affair you want to attend, make-up your mind quickly though as some places are already fully booked, with waiting lists!
Fairmont Bab Al Bahr
Location: Khor Al Maqta, Abu Dhabi
Telephone: 02 654 3333
For more information about all the festive events at Fairmont Bab Al Bahr or to book any festive offers, contact the Dining Reservations team on 02 654 3238 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
I was invited to attend this event but the views are all my own based on my experience. Unless otherwise stated all photos © Jo Brett 2015. All rights reserved. Last two photos used courtesy of www.fairmont/abu-dhabi/