What a year 2016 was for us! we became parents for the first time and got upgraded to mummy & daddy status. A status we take much pride & pleasure in but one that has also broken our bodies and turned our lives around. Not having slept more than 3 hours at a stretch since the day our little was was born last month my husband decided to treat us to a short family holiday so as to get away from our daily routine and enjoy some luxurious quality time off together.
Opting to fly out to Muscat, Oman which is only an hour and half away from Doha was perfect for a short quick get away. Our main aim was to get to a beautiful destination in the shortest possible time and to test the waters or should I say skies to see if Amelie could cope with travel and so she did 🙂 Having slept all through the flight she was wide awake as us, ready to explore the stunning Shangri- la Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa.
We booked ourselves at the family section of the resort called Al Waha and were treated to world class hospitality from the time our cab pulled over at the entrance of the hotel. A lovely porter got all our bags and escorted us to the reception. It was the week before Christmas and the so the hotel was decorated with a stunning tree in the lobby that put us right into the holiday cum festive mood.
The resort is built on a bay and nestled by mountains. While checking in we were told that all rooms are either sea or pool facing and we opted for a pool facing room giving us complete access to all the action going on at the hotel from our little balcony.
The property has 3 sections – Al Waha ( A family resort) / Al Bandar ( The old town hotel) & Al Husn (most luxurious Arabian Palace inspired resort)
In total The Shangri la Muscat is equipped with 9 resturants, 3 cafes & 3 pool bars. Access to 2 restaurants located within Al Husn are available only to adults and need prior booking / reservation. Cuisine available on the resort range from Seafood to South American to Spanish to Italian. Different theme nights widen that choice even further when Indian, Arabic and other cuisines are highlighted on different nights through the week.
Our package included breakfast and we were allowed to choose from 2 restaurants where buffet breakfast was served daily from 6:30 to 11 am.
My suggestions of what to do on the property?
– Enjoy the lazy river for a quite and peaceful aqua therapy.
– Play chess or checkers ( live size board games areas that are sea facing)
– Indulge in mini golf located next to the gym area.
– Relax at Chi Spa and treat your body to a wonderful massage. full review – https://questandmark.com/2016/12/17/chi-spa-shangri-la-oman/
– laze on the beach and get treated to cooling fruit treats offered complimentarily by the amazing staff of The Shangri la
– Rent water sport equipment such as snorkeling or canoeing gear to enjoy the open waters.
– Join the hotel guided Turtle hatching tour during season time.
– Book yourself a dolphin watching trip that leaves wee hours of the morning.
– Stroll or run the entire promenade to exercise and enjoy the sea view.
– shop at the local souq on the property.
– Smoke shisha at The Sablah on the terrace of Al Bandar a part of the resort designed keeping in mind the old town of Muscat.
– Sip on delicious sundowners at The Bar a perfect spot for a romantic night out in a private cabana. ( My Favorite )
Try and book dinner at Shahrazad a Moroccan inspired restaurant that has belly dancers shaking to tunes all night whilts you enjoy a perfectly cooked Tajine. Children below 16 are not allowed and prior booking/ reservation is required.
Enjoy a never ending tapas menu that is good enough for 2 persons on the terrace of Tapas and Sablah. We ordered 6 different tapas and were absolutely stuffed. Suggestion – the beef rendang & satay.
Craving a hearty Italian meal then head to Capri Court or just enjoy an early hour of Apperitivo’s to the music of crashing waves.
Big comfy family dining calls for feasting at the buffet areas of Samba and Al Tanoor. Day time enjoy the pool bar of Assira or Al Bandar pool bar. Suggestion – The sweet Chilli Beef and mango salad at Assira & falafel burger at al bandar pool bar.
Seafood lovers head to the fresh seafood market – Bait Al Bahr. We absolutely enjoyed our first night dinner here and were extremely impressed with the service. The staff were knowledgeable and gave us suggestions on food & wine pairings. Suggestion – Crab cakes and Omani Tuna with spinach and mushroom ravioli.
Our stay at The Shangri la was so perfect that we’ve already booked our second trip back in time for turtle hatching season. We got the much needed rest our bodies craved for and the resort will always stay special to us as our first family holiday destination.
Overall Review: The service, food, location & hospitality was just absolutely stunning. I can honestly say that the resort breathe’s into the air the true sense of both Omani and The Shangri la hospitality making it a destination I would keep wanting to go back to.
Good to know :
A short 20 min ride away from the resort is Muscat’s famous – Souq Muttrah. I recommend a quick day trip to get a feel of the city and local living. We found some beautiful artifacts and a tradition Omani shawl that will forever remind us of the most amazing holiday of 2016.