It’s always sunny in Arabia – it rains only five times a year on average. So if you are a MICE planner raring to pull off an extraordinary event outdoors but would like to avoid weather woes: Congratulations, you have found your destination.
Sure, the desert is a significant part of Arabia’s outdoor venues, but remember to check out our private white sand beaches, famous beach clubs, and funky event spaces that make perfect use of clear blue skies.
For this issue’s main feature, we’re walking you through some of Arabia’s cool outdoor venues that are either new in the city or rarely used for events. Here are some of the best-kept MICE secrets in the neighbourhood.
1. Buddha Bar Beach in Abu Dhabi
Spicing up the Abu Dhabi nightlife with a dash of world-class glamour along with its notable brand of music, gastronomy, and mixology, Buddha-Bar has brought its Buddha-Bar Beach concept to the capital.
Famous for its distinctive chill-out vibe and Asian fusion cuisine, Buddha-Bar Beach has been making waves in Baku, Azerbaijian, in Maldives, and on the swanky Greek islands Santorini and Mykonos—but only during the summer season. Its branch at The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort Abu Dhabi is its first permanent venue.
It can seat up to 290 (94 for the terrace, 78 for the restaurant, 54 in the bar, 52 in the lounger and six each for the sushi bar and robata grill). Perfect for a group’s after-dinner drinks, Buddha-Bar Beach also creates a unique dining lifestyle experience for everyone.
2. Jetty Lounge, One & Only Royal Mirage, in Dubai
Housed in chic Arabian architecture with contemporary interiors and dazzling Dubai skyline views, The Jetty Lounge is an elegant beachside bar.
Beverages and wines are complemented by a selection of light snacks such as mezzeh, quiches, Spanish ham and cheeses as well as dips and Asian-inspired platters. The mood is laid back, with sophisticated chill out lounge music.
While Jetty Lounge is not new in the city, it is rarely used for events. Every time we have taken our groups here, they have all simply loved this place. The secret of this lounge is its tone, which effortlessly combines the vibe of a chic, modern bar with the relaxed ambiance you’d find at a beach hangout spot. Chilled tunes, comfy cushions, glowing cuboid seats and twinkling candles make it a must-visit destination.
3. Concrete at Alserkal Avenue, Dubai
For clients who would like to veer away from hotels and hold their events somewhere cool: We highly recommend Concrete at Alserkal Avenue, the heart of Dubai’s flourishing art scene.
Concrete used to be a 1,250-sqm warehouse that is now a multi-purpose, versatile and flexible venue. It has:
• Four 8.10-m pivoting and sliding walls that can create multiple space configurations depending on the type of event.
• All the major interior equipment has been integrated into the ceiling, leaving the walls and floors free of any components.
• Two linear skylights have been positioned above the movable walls to allow either thin blades of light or full daylight depending on the configuration.
While seldom used for MICE functions, we definitely see it as an extraordinary venue for product launches, corporate dinners and even team building events.
4. RIVERLAND™ Dubai, Dubai Parks and Resorts
Whoever said theme parks are just for leisure has not discovered Dubai Parks and Resorts’ RIVERLAND™ yet.
True to its mantra, this venue is an ‘escape from the ordinary’. It is a French-village-themed dining and retail destination that looked like it has been lifted from the pages of a fairytale. People come here to dine, walk around and enjoy the scenery, but only a few understand its great potential as an event venue.
RIVERLAND™ offers some amazing options for MICE, including indoor and outdoor venues with full event support and catering. If you think you need more than a standard ballroom or a plain garden space for your next event, allow us to show you around RIVERLAND™.