Anyone who lives in or has visited Dubai, will no doubt be familiar with the ‘Dhow dinner cruise’ concept. Every evening multiple boats can be seen cruising along the creek or around the marina with guests tucking into a meal onboard.
But while the views are always enjoyable, there is huge difference in the quality of the cruise and, crucially, the food, from boat to boat. And that is where Bateaux Dubai towers above the rest.
Make no mistake, there are cheaper options, but you get what you pay for and this is a unique five-star experience from start to finish.
During our visit we were welcomed onboard by a smiling hostess and presented with a tasty welcome ‘mocktail’ after being shown to our table as the boat set sail from the Deira side of the creek.
The Bateaux Dubai boat is kitted out like a luxurious fine dining restaurant inside with polished wood paneling and crisp table linen throughout. Specifically designed for the flat waters of the creek, it glides effortlessly atop the water while floor to ceiling anti-reflective glass windows give unobstructed views of Dubai’s cityscape. A panist plays softly on a baby grand in the corner, adding to the classy ambience of the voyage.
But it’s the quality of the food that really sets this cruise apart from the countless others available in Dubai. This is a four course fine dining experience comparable with that of an international standard restaurant.
First up, after the obligatory amuse bouche, was a beautifully presented starter of Canadian lobster with red quinoa salad, pressed blood orange cured mushroom, champagne gelee and lobster dressing. My dining partner opted for warm cured salmon with seafood tortellini, ratte potato confit, green peas casserole, citrus crust and micro carrots. The dishes looked so pretty it seemed a shame to eat them, yet eat them we did and they proved to be as tasty as they were eye catching.
For mains I tucked into roasted beef Rossini with truffle mash and mushroom casserole while my partner enjoyed sous vide of duck breast with sweet potato confit and duck rillettes.
As the boat gently ambled down to the historic Al Bataskiya district and turned back for home, we enjoyed a quick breather out on deck for a closer look at the view before returning to conclude our culinary journey with champagne and coconut parfait along with a delicious fruit salad.
The Bateaux Dubai cruise, which lasts around two and a half hours in total, is a must do excursion if you’re looking for an extra special dinner experience.