Ras Al-Khaimah, if you are not familiar with it, is a sister Emirate to Dubai in the UAE.
There isn’t a lot going on in Ras outside of its hotels. There are three indisputable truths, however:
- it is a quick and cheap one hour taxi ride from Dubai
- the beach resorts are high quality
- it is substantially cheaper than Dubai
The key hotel is the Waldorf Astoria, which is a better hotel – at a fraction of the price – than its Dubai sibling. We reviewed the Waldorf Astoria Ras Al-Khaimah here and I’ve been back since.
There are also two high quality resorts run under Marriott’s The Ritz Carlton brand. The Ritz Carlton Al Hamra Beach, reviewed here, is an all-villa Maldives-style resort, whilst The Ritz Carlton Al Wadi Desert – where I returned last Christmas – is an all-villa desert resort. Al Wadi is not quite as good as Marriott’s Al Maha desert resort in Dubai (review here) but, if you have children under 10, you can’t go to Al Maha.
Hilton has now launched Hampton by Hilton Marjan Island to complement the Waldorf Astoria and the adjacent Hilton.
It is advertised as the largest Hampton in the world, with 515 rooms. This is not exactly a selling point. However, it is also very good value for money – good luck getting a Dubai beach resort for £65 per night in October, yet alone one with 750 metres of beach. The rooms look pretty smart too – see above.
As it is a Hampton, all rooms come with free breakfast which is another benefit for families. It also takes part in Hilton’s new ‘guaranteed connecting rooms’ programme which we covered recently.
Points rooms are capped at 30,000 Hilton Honors points per night which means that they will become good value if cash rates go above £100 per night. For now, cash looks like the better deal.
You can find out more on the Hampton by Hilton Marjan Island website here.
How to earn Hilton Honors points and status from UK credit cards (December 2023)
There are various ways of earning Hilton Honors points from UK credit cards. Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.
Do you know that holders of The Platinum Card from American Express receive FREE Hilton Honors Gold status for as long as they hold the card? It also comes with Marriott Bonvoy Gold, Radisson Rewards Premium and MeliaRewards Gold status. We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here and you can apply here.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive a huge 100,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 100,000 Avios) with The Platinum Card. You receive 75,000 points if you spend £10,000 in six months and a further 25,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
Did you know that the Virgin Atlantic credit cards are a great way of earning Hilton Honors points? Two Virgin Points can be converted into three Hilton Honors points. The Virgin Atlantic cards are the only Visa or Mastercard products in the UK which can indirectly earn Hilton Honors points. You can apply here.
You can also earn Hilton Honors points indirectly with:
- American Express Gold (20,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Rewards Credit Card (10,000 bonus Amex points)
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 30,000 Avios) with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. You receive 25,000 points if you spend £3,000 in three months and a further 5,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
and for small business owners:
- American Express Business Gold (20,000 bonus Amex points)
- American Express Business Platinum (40,000 bonus Amex points)
The conversion rate from American Express to Hilton points is 1:2.
(Want to earn more hotel points? Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)