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Review: Sheraton Grand Dubai hotel – what is a ‘new style’ Sheraton like?

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This is our review of the Sheraton Grand hotel in Dubai.

This is the second review in our ‘HfP in Dubai’ series. You can find out review of the W Dubai – The Palm here.

It is one of the first six Sheratons to feature the new Sheraton style which aims to modernise and inject a bit of style in a brand that has otherwise become a bit boring and ‘beige’.

Sheraton Grand Dubai exterior

The hotel opened in 2015 in a purpose built high rise but was refurbished in 2019 as a pathfinder for the new style.

The Sheraton Grand is 54 stories high, with 474 guest rooms as well as almost 200 serviced apartments.

Location

The Sheraton Grand in Dubai is located on Sheikh Zayed Road which runs right through the city:

Sheraton Grand Dubai location

It is just opposite the Dubai World Trade Centre, a short walk from the metro and just a few stops from Dubai Mall / Burj Khalifa. It is also just 15 minutes or so from Dubai International Airport, making it a good base for anyone who needs to be on that side of the city.

Check-in

I arrived around 10pm after my flight into Dubai. Porters are on hand to help with luggage when you arrive. The lobby was actually pretty lively at that time, I guess because it was the weekend.

Sheraton Grand Dubai lobby 2

It is a nice space with a range of casual seating:

Sheraton Grand Dubai lobby

Plus a hot desking area:

Sheraton Grand Dubai lobby hotdesking

There is a little coffee bar on the left.

There are three check-in desks. Two were occupied with staff dealing with what appeared to be difficult customers but the third was quickly staffed to deal with my check-in and the process was quick and smooth.

I was given a Club Twin Room on the 27th floor.

The room

Whilst the lifts aren’t the fastest, the corridors were nicely styled when stepping out:

Sheraton Grand Dubai corridor

The room itself is set up in a fairly standard hotel configuration. This is what you see when you enter:

The wardrobe is on the left hand side, and contains all the usual bits including luggage rack, ironing board, robe, slippers and safe.

Sheraton Grand Dubai wardrobe

The right-hand portion of the wardrobe contains the mini-bar and tea and coffee making facilities.

Sheraton Grand Dubai room amenities

Whilst the machine is Nespresso branded, the coffee capsules are provided by a local company with Arabian coffee.

Sheraton Grand Dubai Nespresso

Moving into the room, an almost wall-length desk continues on from the wardrobe:

Sheraton Grand Dubai desk tv

On the opposite side are the two beds with a bedside table separating them. As this is a modern hotel there were plenty of plug sockets around. A central panel allows for granular control of all the lights, although sadly not for electronic operation of the curtains.

Sheraton Grand Dubai beds

A simple yet effective air conditioning panel is also on the wall. The AC was virtually silent the entire time and I never had a problem with the temperature or operation.

Sheraton Grand Dubai ac

Next to the window is an armchair, small coffee table and a tall floor lamp:

Sheraton Grand Dubai room

There isn’t much of a view, I’m afraid. There are no particular landmarks in the surrounding area. My room had a view of the skyscraper next door:

Sheraton Grand Dubai view

The windows were very dirty, as you can see here, which was unfortunate:

Sheraton Grand Dubai window

Back towards the door you can see there is a massive window between the bedroom and the bathroom. Don’t worry – there is a blind here that can be lowered:

Sheraton Grand Dubai bathroom window

The bathroom is clad in stone and features a large free-standing tub in the window:

Sheraton Grand Dubai bath

…. whilst the shower room and toilet are in separate cubicles:

Sheraton Grand Dubai shower

and

Sheraton Grand Dubai toilet

Toiletries are Le Grand Bain by Byredo, as is standard for Sheraton:

Sheraton Grand Dubai toiletries

One thing I would note is that it appears the rooms have not been refurbished since the hotel opened in 2015. Whilst they are still in pretty good condition you shouldn’t expect it to feel brand new.

The Club Lounge

Since I was in a Club room I had access to the Club Lounge. Anyone with Platinum, Titanium or Ambassador Elite status in Marriott Bonvoy also gets access.

Sheraton Grand Dubai Club Lounge entrance

It is not the largest Club Lounge but was never full when I visited, even during happy hour. Afternoon Tea is served from 2:30pm until 4:30pm whilst Happy Hour is 6pm-8pm and includes complimentary alcohol.

Sheraton Grand Dubai Club Lounge

The staff in the Club Lounge were very friendly and attentive. It was table-service only – I tried both the cheese board and the chicken satay.

The gym and pool

The pool is located on the roof of the building. There is a main rectangular pool which can be used for lane swimming as well as two warmer shallow pools for sitting or laying in:

Sheraton Grand Dubai pool

This is, to be honest, the least impressive part of the hotel and doesn’t match the high standard of the rest of the Sheraton Grand. Whilst there is a view it is difficult to see given the structure of the building.

The gym is just below:

Sheraton Grand Dubai gym

Dining and breakfast

A buffet breakfast is served in Feast, and consists of multiple different stations. Seating is mostly internal, although it does appear to have a small balcony.

Sheraton Grand Dubai feast

and

Sheraton Grand Dubai Feast seating

Hot food includes full English breakfast items (with pork alternative bacon and sausages), Indian, dim sum and of course a live egg station.

Sheraton Grand Dubai breakfast buffet pastries

Cold food includes a full range of breads, pastries, cereals, yoghurts, fruit and cheese and ham, including guacamole. Here is what I had:

Sheraton Grand Dubai breakfast

The hotel also offers a range of dining options, including Larimar, the pool bar:

Sheraton Grand Dubai Larimar pool bar

…. which offered fairly standard poolside fare (albeit big portions and we over ordered!)

Sheraton Grand Dubai salad sandwich

Cue Dubai

The hotel has also just launched a brand new nightlife dining spot next door, called Cue.

Sheraton Grand Dubai Cue entrance

It is a sort of cabaret-bar-restaurant-club and features a number of acrobatic and dance acts throughout the night before transforming into a more conventional club.

Sheraton Grand Dubai Cue show

I was surprised to see something like this at the Sheraton – it’s something I would have expected to see at a W Hotel instead! It is very dark and atmospheric inside:

Sheraton Grand Dubai Cue

…. which means it is also impossible to get any good photographs of the food! I highly recommend the Smokeynest cocktail:

Sheraton Grand Dubai Cue smokeynest

Here is the sea bass ceviche and tuna tataki:

Sheraton Grand Dubai Cue ceviche

I also had the lobster linguine:

Sheraton Grand Dubai Cue lobster linguine

Cue Dubai is the sort of place that has a £55,000 bottle of champagne on the menu, although it has never been ordered, so far. I asked.

There are fewer acts than I was expecting – about 5 minutes of performance every 30 minutes or so. It would have been nice to have a bit more or longer. Although I enjoyed it it obviously won’t appeal to everyone, but it’s something different to your average hotel bar or restaurant.

Conclusion

The best compliment I can give the Sheraton Grand Dubai is that it does not look, or feel, like a traditional Sheraton whilst you are there. The only giveaway is the sign above the door.

The rooms and social spaces are nicely designed with contemporary finishes. The design is still fairly muted – don’t expect Moxy or W levels of design – but it is classy.

Location-wise the Sheraton Grand Dubai also has a lot to offer. Downtown Dubai is very accessible, as is the airport. The only thing that is a bit of a trek is the Dubai Marina and Palm, which are obviously at the other end of the city.

The only thing that could be improved is the pool area, which doesn’t feel as premium as the rest of the hotel.

The Sheraton Grand Dubai is a Category 5 hotel, which means you’ll need between 30,000 and 40,000 Marriott Bonvoy points depending on the season. Cash rates start at £163 for a weekday night in October. You can find out more, and book, on the hotel website here.


How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points and status from UK credit cards

How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points and status from UK credit cards (November 2021)

There are various ways of earning Marriott Bonvoy points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.

The official Marriott Bonvoy American Express card usually comes with 20,000 points for signing up, 2 points for every £1 you spend and 15 elite night credits per year.

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Comments (34)

  • Phillip says:

    Is there an official differentiator between Grand and non-Grand Sheratons?

    • Rhys says:

      Historically the Grands have been the better Sheratons, ie. you could expect it to be someway decent.

  • Mac says:

    I stayed at this property for over 5 months (combined) in the last year and a half. I mostly had Grand Suite, Grande Deluxe Suite or Executive Suite (this is huge!) for the majority of my stay – all of which are a big step up from the Club Rooms.

    For long term guests (of which there are many thanks to the serviced apartments they have), you get to know the Club Lounge staff very well and they are exceptionally friendly/helpful.

    Stating in hotels for extended periods does make them feel more like “home” compared to one or two night stays, and they do throw in extra perks to make long stays more comfortable.

    I agree with the commentary about the pool – it’s not a great pool by Dubai standards. Best to head off to one of the Marina hotels for a more resort feel should you wish a pool day.

    The rates quoted in this article are high compared to what you can actually get, even with full flexibility – especially on corporate/private rates.

    Overall, it’s a great hotel that balances value, good service, decent design and location (for my needs) very well. It has become my go-to in the north end of Dubai.

  • Track says:

    This Sheraton reviewed was already in a purpose-built building and completed to a high specification.

    Plus Dubai’s lustre and luxury requirement. (You can’t operate a Toyota Uber in Dubai figuratively speaking, it has to be a Lexus). Not your typical Sheraton.

  • Magic Mike says:

    In case it’s useful, this hotel seems easy to BRG, I got more than 50% off a 1 bed apartment pre-Covid, and I think BJ mentioned in a chat thread he BRGed them too recently.

    I did have to complain to Marriott to get my points to post though.

    • BP says:

      It was me. Needed something fairly close to the airport for a late arrival. Ended up at £84 a night including breakfast after the 25% came off. It was more like 21% off with exchange rate differences factored in. Cash rate was about £160 room only.

  • ChrisW says:

    That nightclub looks very tacky. Seafood pasta in a club??

    • Rhys says:

      It’s not a club in the conventional sense. Or at least not until after midnight. It’s more burlesque that transitions into a club.

    • Blenz101 says:

      It’s a new concept happening in most global cities in response to Covid and the general move away from traditional nightclubs. Dinner with a varied show.

      STK was perhaps the first to do this, London has one also as a reference point.

    • The Savage Squirrel says:

      It may not be for everyone, but it’s surely better to try something different than have the 5 millionth iteration of ‘international chain hotel restaurant’ with the same identical menu/atmosphere (burger, club sandwich, chilli, a salad, etc – you know the drill) as the other 4,999,999. I might or might not like it but I’d give it a try :).

  • Benilyn says:

    Anyone stayed at Sheraton Mall of Emirates? Curious to hear people’s experiences.

    • Blenz101 says:

      No idea why anybody would choose to stay here. The location is just odd unless you have a pressing reason for direct access to Mall of the Emirates. Perhaps useful if you are visiting relatives in Al Barsha.

  • chabuddy geezy says:

    If you are after a nicer pool the Conrad is next door to the Sheraton Grand.

  • Thywillbedone says:

    Fitness facilities are going to be a much bigger sales point for hotels in the future in my view. Unfortunately today, it is often difficult to get a full sense of exact gym equipment/pool/sauna etc on hotel websites which seems to be a bit of a miss (they tend to focus on spa offerings under the ‘leisure’ tabs. Looking at this one and knowing others in the area with much better facilities, it would be a hard ‘no’ for me.

    • Rhys says:

      I don’t think I have ever seen a busy hotel gym, to be honest – it’s no wonder most hotels don’t invest so much in them!

      • Thywillbedone says:

        I agree they are not often busy but sometimes perhaps people are ‘forced’ off-site in search of better facilities (paying as they go)? I found that on a recent stay at the Merrion Hotel in Dublin, sub-standard gym equipment installed as an afterthought, and the sauna could fit (just) two slender people sitting down. It does vary with location and local attitudes to healthy lifestyles etc.

        • Rhys says:

          I think your lifestyle may be the exception, rather than the rule here 🙂

        • Harry T says:

          Stay at the Shelbourne instead! Very good gym and decent sized pool and spa.

    • Alex B says:

      If there’s 2 similar hotels, I try and book the one which looks like it has a better gym. Never stayed in a hotel which had weight plates/deadlift bar. The best was in Boston where the Double Tree Hilton gave you free access to the YMCA next door.

      • Harry T says:

        @Alex B I’ve got a fair few examples of hotels with barbells, squat racks, proper bars etc. Let me know if you’re interested!

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