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  • Best for Arabian Extravagance: Al Qasr (tel. 04-366-8888; www.madinatjumeirah.com), Madinat Jumeirah. This extravagant resort in Madinat Jumeirah resembles an ornate Arabian palace. It sits on its own island surrounded by waterways, lush gardens, and the re-creation of ancient Gulf architecture.
  • Best for Desert Luxury: Bab Al Shams (tel. 04-832-6699; www.jumeirahbabalshams.com) is a serene desert resort located 45 minutes outside Dubai, ideal for escaping the busy city and immersing oneself in uninterrupted relaxation. Even when fully booked, the resort has the feeling of being mostly empty with an unobtrusive staff that caters to your needs.
  • Best Over-the-Top Experience: Burj Al Arab (tel. 04-301-7777; www.burj-al-arab.com), Jumeirah Beach. The famous luxury resort dominates the Dubai coastline, pampering guests in two-level suites with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the sea and a range of over-the-top amenities fit for kings and queens.
  • Best for Business: Fairmont Dubai (tel. 04-332-5555; www.fairmont.com), Sheikh Zayed Road. Arguably, the most refined hotel on Sheikh Zayed Road, the Fairmont houses some of the most upscale dining and nightlife options in town. Elegantly appointed guest rooms boast panoramic views of the city or the Gulf.
  • Best for Urban Style: Grosvenor House (tel. 04-399-8888; www.grosvenorhouse-dubai.com), Dubai Marina. The stylish tower overlooking the Dubai Marina blends Arabian touches with contemporary design. Guests have access to the beach club at the nearby Le Royal Méridien.
  • Best for Aquatic Adventures: Atlantis, The Palm (tel. 04-426-0000; www.atlantisthepalm.com), Palm Island. Everything seems over the top at this fanciful water-themed resort, which houses among other things Aquaventure, The Lost Chambers, Dolphin Bay, and an amazing three-story-high aquarium.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.