Where to stay in Dubai – What you need to know

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In general terms, accommodation in Dubai is quite expensive for Middle Eastern standards and even if you compare it to big Western cities such as Paris or Rome. Top hotels in good locations are rarely below the USD 120 mark, but it is true that it is possible to find mid-range options close to USD 50. Finding cheap accommodation in Dubai can be complicated and backpacker options are practically inexistent.

Unlike in the West, the cheapest months for acommodation in Dubai are July and August. However, these months are probably not the best for a visit, as temperatures can reach up to 48ºC (120ºF).

With regards to the best areas to stay and the cheapest areas to stay in Dubai, the most budget-friendly options tend to be around Burj Dubai and Deira and start climbing up as we get closer to the Downtown area and the beach.

If money is not and issue, then the best area to stay in Dubai is no doubt Downtown Dubai, as it’s close to most of the modern attractions in the city, such as the Dubai Mall and its fountain. Downtown Dubai is also really convenient to reach the Old Town and the beach.

If it’s luxury you’re after, then the best area to stay in Dubai will probably be around Jumeirah, with jewels like the Palm and the Burj al Arab and the beaches right at your feet.

Accommodation Options in Dubai

Hotels in Dubai

The best hotels in Dubai – Budget to Luxury.

Hostels in Dubai

Hostels and cheap stays in all areas of Dubai.


Apartments

Would you like independence? Book an apartment in Dubai.

Guesthouses and B&B

Pensions, bed and breakfast and guesthouses in Dubai.

Best areas to stay in Dubai

1. Downtown Dubai

Although it is not Dubai’s historical center, Downtown Dubai is considered the heart of the city.

It is the best area to stay in Dubai for leisure travellers as it contains most of the modern attractions of the city, such as the Burj Khalifa Tower, Dubai Mall and Dubai Fountain.

It is also the best choice for business travellers, as it hosts the Dubai World Trade Center, the main congress fairgrounds and many of the city’s skyscrapers and offices.

Downtown is also the best area to stay in Dubai for nightlife, as alcohol consumption is very regulated and only top-notch hotels are allowed to serve alcoholic beverages in the city.

Prices for accommodation here are among the highest in the city as some of the uber-chic options, like the Armani Hotel can also be found here. There are some more budget-friendly accommodation options here, but they still tend to be pricier than in the surrounding neighbourhood of Burj Dubai.

Mejores zonas para dormir en Dubái - Downtown Dubai

Best areas to stay in Dubai – Downtown Dubai

Dubai Downtown - Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Dubai Downtown – Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Why stay here:

  • City Centre
  • Best area for nightlife
  • Close to attractions
  • Dubai Mall
  • Burj Khalifa
  • Great for business travellers

Hand-picked accommodation in this area

  •  Top Pick
  •  Midrange Option
  •  Luxury Option
88/100

Vida Downtown Dubai

The Vida Downtown Dubai Hotel is located just a ten minute walk from the iconic Burj Khalifa building (the tallest tower in the world). Vida is the ideal boutique hotel for a business or leisure stay.

from US$ 199
71/100

Radisson Blu Dubai Downtown

The Radisson Blu Dubai Downtown Hotel is a four star property located very close to the main attractions of Dubai. It has a spa, swimming pool and business centre.

from US$ 139
91/100

Armani Hotel Dubai

The Armani Hotel Dubai is located right at the the Burj Khalifa Building, occupying eleven floors of the iconic tower. It was designed by the Italian designer Giorgio Armani and has a swimming pool, deluxe spa and first class facilities.

from US$ 299
 

 

 

2. Dubai Beaches

Dubai has a priviledged location by the sea.

For many of the millions of travelers who visit Dubai, the main attraction of the desert city is its sandy beache.

Bathed by the warm waters of the Persian Gulf and with temperatures that don’t usually drop below 30ºC (86ºF) , Dubai is a city where you can enjoy the beach any time of the year.

The Dubai coastline has some of the landmarks of contemporary engineering such as the world renowned Palm Jumeirah.

Staying at the beach in Dubai is a great experience if you plan to visit the city for relaxation or if you want to mix work with pleasure and the luxurious lifestyle of some of the best hotels in the world.

Many coastal hotels in Dubai have private beaches and bar and restaurant services right on the beach.

On the city’s public beaches, it is recommended to wear modest clothing and avoid thongs or bikinis. Topless is prohibited in the United Emirates.

Where to stay in Dubai - Dubai Beach

Where to stay in Dubai – Dubai Beach

Dubai Beach - Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Dubai Beach – Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Why stay here:

  • Luxurious hotels
  • Nightlife
  • Public and private beaches
  • Great for leisure travellers
  • Burj al Arab

Hand-picked accommodation in this area

  •  Top Pick
  •  Budget Option
  •  Midrange Option
  •  Luxury Option
89/100

Waldorf Astoria Dubai Palm Jumeirah

The Waldorf Astoria Dubai Palm Jumeirah Hotel is a 5-star hotel located on the famous Palm Jumeirah and offers luxurious rooms and suites with panoramic views of the Arabian Gulf.

from US$ 188
71/100

Lotus Hotel Apartments & Spa – Marina

The Lotus Hotel Apartments & Spa – Marina offers self-catering apartments, a spa and a pool with city views. It is located 9 minutes walk from the beach.

from US$ 79
85/100

Marina Hotel Apartments

The Marina Hotel Apartments are located across the street from the Dubai Marina, on the beachfront. They feature spacious self-catering apartments, outdoor pools, a squash court and a fully equipped gym.

from US$ 130
87/100

Jumeirah Beach Hotel

The Jumeirah Beach Hotel is located a 2-minute walk from the beach. This 5-star luxury hotel in Dubai offers a private beach, over 16 dining venues, 6 swimming pools and a climbing wall.

from US$ 279
 

 

 

3. Burj Dubai

The bustling Burj Dubai area boasts some of the most iconic historical landmarks of the city, such as the Al Fahidi historical district, the Governor’s Office, the Dubai Museum and the Textile Souq.

Burj Dubai is also a busy commercial and dining centre, with lots of restaurants along Al Dhiyafah Road.

It is a much less luxurious area than the Downtown or the beach, but it also has some of the local charm that those areas lack.

Hotels in this area tend to be cheaper than those of neighbouring Downtown Dubai, but are at the same time more centrally located than those of Deira.

In recent years, this area has seen a surge of traditional, Arab style properties. Charming hotels and guesthouses to escape the typical chain hotel feel that you can find everywhere in the city.

Best areas to stay in Dubai - Burj Dubai

Best areas to stay in Dubai – Burj Dubai

Burj Dubai - Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Burj Dubai – Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Hand-picked accommodation in this area

  •  Top Pick
99/100

Rove Trade Centre

The Rove Trade Centre Hotel is an alternative style hotel with an excellent rating on booking engines, located between the “new Dubai” and the old one, very close to the World Trade Center and in one of the best areas to stay in town.

from US$ 69
 

 

 

4. Bastakiya (Old Dubai)

The Bastakiya neighbourhood is the traditional heart and historic quarter of Dubai.

It is located on the south shore of Dubai Creek, across from Deira.

Bastakiya boasts most of the historical buildings of the city.

It’s an area with an old feel, with some budget hotels for the price-sensitive traveller and some more upmarket, as well as luxury and boutique-y Arab-style guesthouses that could bring some oriental flavor to your stay in the capital of the desert.

Bastakiya is a good area to stay in Dubai if you are interested in history and the more traditional aspect of a city that is definitely more than skyscrapers and bling.

Best districts to stay in Dubai - Bastakiya

Best districts to stay in Dubai – Bastakiya

Bastakiya - Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Bastakiya – Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Hand-picked accommodation in this area

  •  Top Pick
78/100

Gateway Hotel

The Gateway Hotel offers modern rooms and free Wi-Fi in all areas. It also has an outdoor pool. Dubai’s green metro line is 850 meters away. It is located in one of the best areas to stay in Dubai.

from US$ 57
 

 

 

5. Deira & Al Rigga

The Deira district is located on the north side of the Creek and it is an old part of town where the old Dubai port area was located. It was one of the first business areas in town and still today it hosts the Deira Business Centre. It’s the closest district to the airport and here we can find most of the budget and cheap accommodation options of Dubai.

The modern part of Deira is known as Al Rigga, a district with lots of dining and shopping options and some cheap accommodation (for Dubai standards).

It is by no means the most luxurious area in town, but if it’s cheap accommodation you’re after, then this is probably the top area to stay in Dubai.

Dubai Creek is one of the most important natural features of the city, and lots of important and historical buildings are located on both sides of it, like the Deira Twin Towers or the Sheraton Dubai Creek.

Staying in Dubai - Deira

Staying in Dubai – Deira Philip Lange / Shutterstock.com

Deira, Dubai - Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Deira, Dubai – Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Hand-picked accommodation in this area

  •  Top Pick
74/100

Avenue Hotel Dubai

The Avenue Hotel Dubai offers air-conditioned rooms with a flat-screen TV and a rooftop pool with panoramic city views. Dubai Airport is just 3.9 km away.

from US$ 56
 

 

 

6. Dubai Business Bay

Dubai Business Bay is a recently created area that (like most of Dubai) is still being built.

This megacomplex will include over 240 buildings, from office skyscrapers to shopping centres and houses, all surounded by parks and canals.

Many of the buildings are already finished and it is an especially attractive area for business travellers.

Being one of the most sought-after neighborhoods in Dubai, Business Bay’s hotels tend to be luxury and pricey.

Best areas to stay in Dubai - Dubai Business Bay

Best areas to stay in Dubai – Dubai Business Bay

Dubai Business Bay - Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Dubai Business Bay – Click to see all hotels on a map (opens in a new tab)

Hand-picked accommodation in this area

  •  Top Pick
86/100

Steigenberger Hotel – Business Bay

The Steigenberger Hotel – Business Bay offers an outdoor pool open all year round and a spa center. The hotel also has a sauna, fitness center and free WiFi throughout the property.

from US$ 165
 

 

 

7. Jumeirah

Jumeirah is an affluent area located directly on the beach. It is a very upmarket district, with art galleries, boutiques and beautiful parks.

There are also a lot of nice shopping centres and chic cafés and restaurants.

Jumeirah Beach Park is the best place to catch a tan and, if you’re into sports, the whole area is surrounded by bike lanes.

Where to stay in Dubai - Jumeirah

Where to stay in Dubai – Jumeirah

Hand-picked accommodation in this area

  •  Top Pick
93/100

Burj Al Arab Jumeirah

The Burj Al Arab Jumeirah Hotel is an icon of modern architecture. Located on a private island, it offers uberluxurious suites with ocean views, 9 exclusive restaurants and a luxurious full service spa.

from US$ 1299
 

 

 

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About the Author

My name is Luis Cicerone. When I was little, I would walk around the house with an atlas in my hand. My rainy Sundays were spent memorising maps and capitals. At fifteen I did my first solo trip and since then I travel whenever I can. I work in travel marketing. I love photography, movies and cat videos.

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