Ramadan is the month of blessings and forgiveness.” Unknown

During the Holy Month of Ramadan muslims and non-muslims, family and friends join together to dine for Iftar and Suhour. Ramadan will begin once the Moon Sighting Committee sees the new crescent moon (astronomers are predicting 12th April), the same committee will convene again for a moon sighting to mark the end of Ramadan and the start of Eid al-Fitr.

A variety of Ramadan dining options will be available in various locations in Abu Dhabi and to suit all budgets (with social distancing regulations). Menus will be offering traditional fare while others may present a more modern or international interpretation. People will gather together at sunset to break their fast with the eating of dates followed by an Iftar buffet or dinner. 

Most establishments across the capital honour this tradition and offer their own variation of iftar with specially prepared menus and buffets. Suhoor menus, usually a la carte or set options, will also be available. Ramadan decorations will line up the streets and bridges all over the city, illuminated at night to celebrate the Holy Month. 

Here’s my Ramadan selection with some suggestions for Iftar and Suhour dining as well as details of wellness and stay options that some of the hotels are also offering. (This guide is based on Ramadan offerings starting from the 12th April until 12th May but check with the venue directly or visit their website for confirmation of start date). 

Ramadan Mubarak

The Abu Dhabi EDITION – Exciting news as Market at EDITION will reopen for Ramadan dining. Iftar will be served daily from sunset to 8:30pm offering traditional dishes with a modern twist from Michelin-starred chef Tom Aikens in collaboration with local chef Mohamad Orfali, who specialises in contemporary Arabic cuisine. A combination of live stations and table service, the Iftar buffet will include dishes such as Zaatar Spice Rub Chicken Breast with bulgur wheat salad and pomegranate and roast Cauliflower and Chickpea Tagine with saffron and black rice. For dessert, a unique black coloured Arabian Ice Cream Collection will be served in charcoal cones. Flavours will include Black Sesame and Activated Charcoal, Smoked Apple, Watermelon and Chilli Sorbet, Beetroot, Rose and Coconut Sorbet and Toffee Popcorn (AED 198 per person )

The a la carte Suhoor menu, available daily from 10pm – 2am, will be served on Market’s outdoor terrace overlooking the marina. Expect traditional favourites such as Chicken Shawarma Rolls, Falafel Wraps, Cauliflower & Raisin Tabbouleh, Coconut Rose Mouhalabieh and sweet treats.

The hotel is also offering a GCC Residents Package, an overnight stay in a contemporary Deluxe Room with Iftar and Suhoor included, or a Family Escape, where adjoining rooms can accommodate families in comfort.

The Abu Dhabi EDITION, Al Bateen, Abu Dhabi. Telephone 02 208 0000, email restaurantreservations.auh@editionhotels.com or visit www.editionhotels.com/abu-dhabi/ 

Saadiyat Beach Club – Guests are invited to feast on Middle Eastern classics and International dishes in a lavish Iftar buffet with a stunning sunset backdrop (AED 199 per person, AED 99 for children). Enjoy the sea breeze with an a la carte Suhoor served outdoors in the garden-inspired terrace overlooking the ocean. Throughout the Holy Month, from sunset onwards the exclusive poolside cabanas will be transformed into a secluded spaces with Ramadan decorations for an intimate, candle-lit experience.  

Available daily from sunset – 1am on weekdays and sunset – until 2am on weekends. Booking is mandatory. 

Saadiyat Beach Club, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi. Telephone 02 656 3536/050 527 2333/055 425 7846. For more information visit www.saadiyatbeachclub.ae

Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi – Enjoy authentic Arabian experiences blended with the influences from the hotel’s international team this Holy month. From dusk to dawn all the hotel’s restaurants will be offering experiences created by executive Chef Christian Buenrostro, Executive Pastry Chef Rasika Mahina and the rest of the culinary team.

From sunset until 9pm, traditional Iftar fare such as Emirati lamb ouzi and umm ali will be served at Crust restaurant (AED 210 per person) while a menu including favourites such as mezze, chicken biryani and cheese kunafa will be available at Al Meylas (AED 310 per person). An a la carte suhoor option will be served from 9 pm until 1am at Eclipse Terrace Lounge with highlights including traditional mezze, Arabic grilled meats, shakshuka and shawarma.

Ramadan offerings will also be available at Butcher & Still (4pm – midnight) and Cafe Milano (noon – midnight). American inspired a la carte dishes at Butcher & Still will include French onion soup, Kansas City striploin and cherry pie while Italian favourite Cafe Milano will be serving a menu of classic dishes including pan-seared scallops, saffron risotto and tiramisu. 

The hotel is also offering Ramadan stay and wellness packages to give guests an all round experience – find out more HERE

Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi, Al Maryah Island, Abu Dhabi. To book telephone 02 333 2222, email reservations.abudhabi@fourseasons.com or visit www.fourseasons.com/abudhabi/landing-pages/property/ramadan/ for more information.

Anantara Eastern Mangroves Hotel – Enjoy an authentic culinary journey with Iftar at Ingredients. Choose from six varieties of date to break your fast followed by a buffet of traditional Arabic dishes as well as Thai, Indian and international flavours. Finish with a selection of Ramadan sweets. Available throughout the Holy Month from sunset – 8:30pm (AED 245 including soft beverages).

Relax and enjoy Suhour at Marasi by The Pool Deck with a la carte and set menus that include favourites such as hot and cold mezze, saj and shawarma available daily from 9:00pm – 3:30am (minimum spend of AED 145). The hotel is also offering Ramadan Spa specials at the Anantara Spa with tailor made wellness treatments and Ramadan Moments packages that include an overnight stay, Iftar and a choice or either breakfast or Suhour.

Anantara Eastern Mangroves Hotel, Telephone 056 503 5121 or email emdining@anantara.com for dining or res.auh@anantara.com for spa or stay information or visit www.anantara.com/en/eastern-mangroves-abu-dhabi 

The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi Grand Canal – The hotel has announced a whole month of culinary celebrations to guarantee a memorable and authentic Ramadan. All-day dining restaurant Giornotte will serve a daily traditional Iftar* buffet from sunset to 9pm with live cooking stations, Ramadan beverages and beautiful decorations (AED 250 net per person). 

Suhoor will be served daily at Mijana, from 8:30pm to 2am, an a la carte menu with Arabian favourites accompanied by unparalleled views from the restaurant’s terrace. *Two for one vouchers for Iftar are available during the first week of Ramadan, visit www.morecravings.com/venues/giornotte for all the information. 20% discount is also offered to Iftar groups larger than 25 people. 

The Ritz-Carlton Abu Dhabi Grand Canal, Al Maqta Area, Abu Dhabi. Telephone 02 818 8888, email rc.auhrz.leads@ritzcarlton.com or visit http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/uae/abu-dhabi

Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi – Enjoy a Ramadan dining experience with a panoramic view at Stratos Lounge, Bar & Grill’s 120m Sky High Iftar. The hotel’s elegant revolving restaurant will be serving an Iftar from the Josper, the specialist oven that works at high temperatures sealing, smoking and grilling at once to offer guests unique flavours. Abu Dhabi’s highest restaurant Iftar menu will be served from sunset every day throughout the Holy Month (AED 275 per person).

Le Royal Méridien Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Khalifa Street, Abu Dhabi. Telephone 02 674 2020/800 101101or visit http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/auhdm-le-royal-meridien-abu-dhabi/

Café 302 – Diners visiting Al Maha Arjaan by Rotana can enjoy a cosy vibe and buffet of Middle Eastern delicacies at Café 302 throughout Ramadan. The menu, which is available from sunset until 9pm, will include healthy starters and salads, a traditional Ouzi station, mains, desserts accompanied by Ramadan-themed beverages. (AED 150 per person, 50% off for children 6 to 12 years & kids under 6 eat for free).

Café 302, Al Maha Arjaan by Rotana, Fatima Bint Mubarak Street, Abu Dhabi. Telephone 02 610 6688, email cafe302.almaha@rotana.com or visit www.rotana.com/almahaarjaanbyrotana for more information.

All views are my own. Unless otherwise stated, all photos on this page © Jo Brett 2021. All rights reserved. Information and images used with courtesy of the respective venues. Featured image used with courtesy of http://www.pexels.com