When you're in the glitziest city in the Middle East, you'll want a hotel as impressively adorned as it is traditional. Dubai's got no shortage of luxury resorts, but few tread a line between Arabian extravagance and customary touches quite like the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, in a prime spot on the exclusive Palm Jumeirah development.
Given that the Palm Jumeirah is essentially a handful of sandbanks, it's impressive enough that a monstrous five-star hotel has been built on the fringe of it – let alone a palace like Jumeirah Zabeel Saray. Overlooking the pristine Arabian Sea, it's – much like Dubai itself – big enough to lose yourself in for several weeks, let alone the 24 hours stopover we've got to explore the city.
But with just 24 hours, there's plenty to do: from relaxing outside in the maze of swimming pools, enjoying the private slice of beach; hanging out in the bar in the expansive, constantly-smells-of-incense lobby; or exploring the ten restaurants and bars within this mega resort. (We choose the former, slouching on the sun beds by the pool, shaded by palm trees.)
The rooms themselves – the size of suites, with huge marble bathtubs and walk-in showers – are full of luxurious Ottoman flecks, with balconies overlooking the beach and the marina. Although, with so much to keep us amused in 24 hours, it's just a couple of hours of shut eye that we're here for – and with beds large enough to lose ourselves in, it eases the pain of jet lag and an overnight flight.
Plus, with Nicole Scherzinger's name on the guestbook, do you really want to stay elsewhere?