Philippa was outstanding. She was always there at the end of the phone line to answer all my questions. We had a wonderful holiday
Another great holiday organised by Darren and the team - couldn't recommend highly enough.
The seats Gavin got for us by the emergency doors were great.
We have been using DialAFlight for many years and they have always had the best customer service that anybody could wish for. My advice to anyone who has not tried them - is to do so - ask for Daniel Webb - and you will come back time and time again.
So impressed with DialAFlight. From start to finish Natasha went above and beyond to ensure we had the most memorable holiday. We will definitely be booking with you again.
Jeff Lee was amazing from start to finish. So helpful and knowledgeable. First time I have used DialAFlight but would highly recommend
As always, Gavin provides us with the best service.
I've booked with you a number of times. Would and do recommend DialAFlight to everyone. Manny is brilliant.
Once again excellent service. Thank you Danny Sharma
Second holiday booked by DialAFlight and as usual everything went to plan. Big thanks to Stacey Rayner who has been excellent to deal with.
Great work as usual by my travel manager Oli de Bernier
Really valued pre-flight call to check all was well…..a reassuring gesture! Thank you for all of your help.
Superb service from Matt as usual. Attentive and great advice and guidance as well as delivering on yet another superb holiday. Looking forward to the next one now….
First class service as always. Very efficient. Austin and his team are awesome
I have used DialAFlight for many years. Rupert has been my contact mainly and he and the company are brilliant in all aspects including offering good prices.
Kempinski hotel in Muscat a big let down.
DialAFlight were amazing - keeping us updated with everything and helping us with all changes
I will definitely book with Tommy again! Everything went smoothly with no issues with flight, hotel and transfer. It was my first time booking with DialAFlight and the extra mile they went was faultless.
Great service and communication from Chris and his team
Les and Teddy - fantastic service as always - would not use anybody else
I have been dealing with Ryan for more years than I can remember and his service has remained consistently amazing. He is always looking for the best deal on flights and hotels and before I book anything he will always suggest a different day or time to leave or return if it will save me some money. Top guy!
Wonderful service. Lloyd could not have been more helpful.
Thank you Jordan our trip to Dubai to visit family went well. You never let us down.
Excellent service from Matilda and will continue to book with DialAFlight
Really liked the follow up calls and check in's before departure. The App is fantastic, used it every day while I was away and regularly leading up to the trip.
Malcolm was great and extremely helpful with all my questions.
Would like to thank Curtis for all his help. Very professional
All documentation arrived 2 weeks before departure. Phone call to check all was in order 5 days before and to call if any problems while away. Service excellent.
Excellent service from start to finish.. always available to contact and would certainly recommend. A big thank you to Paul
If we build it they will come' could be the mantra of the overarchingly ambitious project that is Dubai.
My first visit in 2002 was a stopover from Afghanistan where I'd been reporting for ITN. We were awed by the scale and luxury. We drank lurid cocktails at a swim-up bar and watched dredgers spraying arcs of sand into the sea. Someone said they were creating a huge island, the shape of a date palm. The idea seemed so fantastical as to be unbelievable.
Through audacity, far-sighted-ness and an ability to hold its nerve through the financial crash, Dubai has created a futuristic mega-city that's now the fourth largest tourist draw on Earth.
If visitors ask to see the 'real' Dubai, they're pointed towards The Creek, where wooden boats once fished the saltwater inlet and traders from India and East Africa supplied souks on the water's edge. There, visitors are assured, they can still find authentic heritage. But the Creek is being transformed. Tourist boats still chug down the waterway but today they're spotting super-yachts and giddying construction projects.
And its centrepiece, sitting long and low on the waterfront, is one of the most ambitious and high-end hotels to date - the Palazzo Versace. Imagine fusing the most flamboyant Italian fashion house with the pulsating emporium of wealth and ambition which is Dubai. You might picture the result as a fest of gaudy excess.
Yet the Palazzo Versace, a vast neoclassical construction that resembles a 16th Century Italian palace is, dare I say, subtle and tasteful amid gold and glass skyscrapers that pierce the clouds all over town. It may be restrained in Dubai terms, but it's not low-key. The entrance has striking high ceilings, and a huge glass frontage overlooking the water.
There's the vast mosaic on the floor, made up of more than a million pieces and the size of an Olympic swimming pool, beyond which there is, well, an Olympic-size swimming pool.
And marble everywhere. Then there are the furnishings. Every single piece of furniture and fabric in the hotel's 215 rooms and suites is designed and tailor-made by the House of Versace.
At this point I may have been reviewing the wisdom of bringing my three pre-teenage boys along. I wouldn't let them walk past a Versace store at home for fear they'd cause costly damage; now they were effectively living in one.
Yet, from the off they rose to the challenge. They might have spent the whole first day in their vast room playing with a console that created mood lighting and operated the curtains had our butler (yes, really) not offered them a hotel tour.
They discovered the central infinity pool is for adults only but as there are two other huge pools, it wasn't exactly a hardship.
They were quickly on first name terms with most of the staff. They struck up a friendship with a Malaysian chef who sent over duck pancakes each time we ate at the fantastic buffet.
A DESERT ADVENTURE
We swerved the famed shopping malls (some the size of 50 football pitches), instead heading to the desert in search of adventure. Our guide, Saleh, looked incongruous in the marble foyer in a huge pair of desert boots, as did his 4x4 among the Ferraris and Bentleys outside.
But half an hour later the skyscrapers had given way to sand dunes and we were spotting oryx resting in the evening sun.
That was the calm before the sand storm as the dune bashing began: this is a sort of do-it-yourself rollercoaster where your vehicle climbs to the top of a dune, then lurches perilously down the other side.
Another day trip was to a water park where my children sought out the scariest rides. As a gift to myself, for surviving, we had dinner in the Palazzo Versace's Enigma restaurant. The restaurant showcases top chefs from around the world. Each comes for a three or four-month stay. We were fed by Quique Dacosta, who has a three-star Michelin restaurant near Alicante. It was an incredible sensory experience.
This hotel is the centrepiece of what Dubai calls its 'Culture Village'. If you think culture and Dubai don't belong in the same sentence, that's to underestimate its incredible vision. In a few years Dubai will have an opera house to rival Sydney's.
So could this centre of conspicuous consumption become a destination for art and culture tourism? You wouldn't bet against it. After all it's not as farfetched as building a giant island shaped like a palm tree in the Arabian Gulf.
First published in the Daily Mail - March 2017
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