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JAN-FEB 2018 53 meetings & conventions • MODERN YET EXOTIC Dubai's hospitality industry is abuzz with development plans, with 4,512 rooms in the pipeline, adding to the current inventory of 681 hotels providing 102,845 rooms. Of these rooms is a good spread of five-star to budget options enjoying an average occupancy of 76 percent. Planners looking for Arabian charm will find Palace Downtown an ideal option. It is centrally located and near Burj Khalifa, Dubai Mall, Dubai Opera and Souk Al Bahar. Nestled amidst the old-world ambience of Middle Eastern heritage in the cosy courtyards with plush seating, delegates are able to enjoy a rich dining and recreational experience. Its restaurants deserve special mention as their award-winning reputation and the views afforded by the spectacular nightlights of the Dubai fountain show and skyscrapers provide planners with memorable dinner functions and cocktail receptions. There's Thai-styled Thiptara, Argentinian Asado and Asian-inspired Fai to impress with culinary finesse. Offering a different kind of luxe appeal is the Address Boulevard, also steps away from The Dubai Mall and downtown business district. It's modern and stylish with lounge areas that remind one of a cosy and elegant home, with chandeliers that are like artworks providing a sense of occasion. About a 10-minute drive away in Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club is Park Hyatt Dubai. Located in the city's heritage district, the hotel offers distractions from the near-by Gold Souk, Spice Souk, Dubai Museum and Bastakiya Arts District. The sprawling property offers spacious rooms with peaceful views of the creek, and its verdant grounds provide opportunities for planners to organise outdoor functions and team- building activities. The Palm Garden, for example, is ideal for a standing reception before sitting down for a private dinner on the lawn. If high-end luxury is desired, One & Only Royal Mirage offers a stylish stay with a resort feel. Overlooking Palm Barden Bay, it comprises three distinct accommodations: The Palace, Arabian Court and Residence & Spa, each featuring unique venues such as the Arabian Court, a Majlis-style meeting lounge; an outdoor amphitheatre, landscaped gardens and courtyards. "One-third of the world's population can reach Dubai by plane in under four hours, and two-thirds within eight hours." – STEEN JAKOBSON, DIRECTOR, DUBAI BUSINESS EVENTS Top left: Palace Downtown offers 242 rooms, inclusive of 81 suites; Bottom left: A private dinner set-up in The Palace meeting room

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