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Dining in Abu Dhabi

Hemingway’s, Hilton Abu Dhabi – There are three different places inside. The main restaurant has a good tex-mex menu, a wide selection of beer on tap and features live music in the evening. Jazz Bar – The second venue, has great food and a good jazz band. The band normally changes every six months or so, but the quality is consistent and they take requests. The bartenders normally put on a show by tossing bottles around while mixing a mean cocktail. The third place is Cinnabar, a nightclub that normally gets going after midnight, although it can be a nice place for a quiet drink early in the evening. The music is mostly house/club, although they have a salsa night. The Captain’s Arms Le Meridien – Traditional British pub located in the hotel courtyard. The pub features traditional food and a great selection of beer on tap. The large terrace is great during the cooler months of the year. A typical hang-out for the expat crowd, but try to get there early, as it attracts a large after-work crowd. Wakatua, Le Meridien is a Polynesian-themed cocktail bar located at the far end of the courtyard, right on the water. The cocktails are amazing. The Navy Grog is highly recommended. It has a nice view at night, over the water. Rock Bottom, at the Capital Hotel, is one of the most popular night club locations in all of Abu Dhabi. It stays open later than most venues, and is cheaper. If you get there early enough, they have decent food you can enjoy in the restaurant area. They have both a live band and an excellent DJ, along with black lights and lasers. The Embassy is a fairly new nightclub in The Emirates Palace Hotel. Though drinks are expensive, it is worth a visit. The grand hotel is a must-see in Abu Dhabi and the actual club is nicely decorated, comfortable, has great service, a balcony overlooking the hotel grounds, and provides a fun time with great music and very colorful laser shows. Sax is a popular night club located in The Royal Meridian Hotel. Next door to the restaurant/bar "Oceans", Sax is a beautifully decorated club with sleek black marble floors, two bars, a DJ, and depending on the time, a Jazz band. The club is often very loud and very dark with little more than lasers lighting the room. PJ’s is a ’traditional’ Irish Pub in the Royal Meridian Hotel, boasting brunch buffets and a long happy hour. The majority of the guests are usually English/British/American. This is also a great place to come to watch sports, as the quiet daytime atmosphere and televisions throughout ensure a pleasant experience. The outdoor seating near the hotel’s pool is also a great asset on cooler days. Zenith at the Sheraton Corniche is nicely decorated club and has a nice sized dance floor. If you like the local Abu Dhabi crowd and Arabic music, this is a great place to go. The drinks can be expensive, but the presentation is entertaining. Just around the corner is a quiet outside venue where you can drink and smoke sheesha near a pond. Trader Vic’s is a famous cocktail bar/restaurant located in The Beach Rotana Hotel (connected to The Abu Dhabi Mall). The flattering lighting, interesting menu, and soft but fun island music make this a great place for a date or hanging out with people you actually want to talk to. The cocktail menu is pages long, and ordering a complicated fruity concoction is a must. The drinks may be a little on the expensive side at times, but the atmostphere is great. Heroes is a friendly sports grill/bar. Located in The Crowne Hotel’s basement, it offers reasonable meals, and fair drink prices. The bar is often full of men and women watching various sports games on television. Later at night they have a DJ and a live band that play softer rock songs. It is a pleasant place to hang out with friends, though the lack of windows or ventilation can make it stuffy and smoke-filled quickly. The Yacht Club at the Intercontinental Hotel is newer bar/restaurant, and offers a gorgeous view of the sunset over the marina if you sit outside. Inside has a very modern, minimalistic feel. The cocktails are delicious, but expensive. Left Bank at the Souk at the Shangrila Hotel is a popular and lively spot. It serves a wide range of interesting cocktails as well as nicely prepared and presented meals. They are still new so they are trying a little harder right now, and the service tends to be pretty good.



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