Nestled away and moored amidst other private boats in Umm Hurair, Bur Dubai, is the Bateaux by JA Resorts – a quaint and elegant glass-enclosed dhow cruise with a freshly prepared 5-course gourmet menu and staff that makes for impeccable service and a delightful experience. At the decks, flags with the name of the boat usher guests to what could be the fanciest dhow cruise in the UAE.
Ordinarily, the dhow cruise, in particular, this one, with its candlelit atmosphere would make for a perfect romantic dinner date. I could easily imagine a romantic evening with flowing conversations and bubblies while a beautiful backdrop of nighttime Dubai, on the humble creek, floats by.
However, my intention was familial as I went with my mum to celebrate my birthday as far away from the bustling city as possible. It was spectacular nonetheless and we disembarked with smiles, loyalty programs and lots of pictures.
On board the Bateaux, we sat at a table for two by the window and loved the food and the ambience, the servers and hostesses were genuinely warm, polite and helpful in their attempt to make the following two and a half hours as comfortable as possible. The chef’s culinary skills became evident when perfectly cooked and presented meals were brought to our table. Naresh, our server informed us that all the meals were freshly prepared onboard. Considering the 2 1/2 hour time frame and the sumptuousness of the meal along with how delectable it looked, despite it being perhaps a daily routine for the kitchen staff, was by all accounts very impressive.
We ordered the Avocado & Prawn and Baby beef Carpaccio for starters and for the mains – Roasted Barbarie Duck and Pan-seared codfish. The fish was cooked just right. For dessert, my mum ordered the Chocolate sable while I was pretty content with the age-old Cheese platter.
In between the dinner service, we stepped away from our tables and went over to the upper deck (equipped with a cocktail bar) to soak in the picturesque skyline and stretch our legs.
My favourite part was the contrast that formed in the drifting distance – between Old Town Dubai and the Modern stately High Rises, people going for runs on the promenades, those sitting and contemplating all under the shimmering facades of bright lights and the crescent moon. Looking in, the contained expanse of Downtown Dubai was the highlight of the scenic beauty; that is Dubai. It is indeed something else to be drifting on water.
The crew surprised me with a birthday pastry, despite me not telling them that it was my big day, they even sang me a birthday song with ample gusto. How sweet is that?
Would I recommend The Bateaux by JA Resorts?
This dhow cruise experience, at the price point, is the sum of happy- small and big, which make of a unique and memorable 5* dining experience. The staff are warm, accommodating and proactive. The sights by the creek are breathtakingly beautiful. The food is delectable and fresh. Despite the menu being a set one, the options are varied.