Wednesday, June 28, 2017


What an amazing month March turned out to be, we celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary for an entire week, starting of at Le Meridien Al Aqah and finishing at Al Maha Desert Resort and Spa, with a trip to Jumeirah Beach Hotel and Emirates Golf Club inbetween!!  The weather has finally broken and we are experiencing a rise in temperatures, it's no secret I prefer the hotter months over the cooler ones. It's Easter this month, so I hope the Easter Bunny is really kind to you all. Have a fabulous month wherever are you are.


Geordie Armani

All week I have been fancying having some fish/seafood so this morning I asked what people thought of Jimmy's Killer Prawns, the response I got back was not good so instead we decided to check out Barracuda Restaurant on the Beach Road, and I am so glad we did!! The restuarant which is located between Al Manara and Al Safa on the sea side of the Beach Road is quite small but big enough if you know what I mean, the decor whilst tasteful is a little drab but the place was very clean.  We got there around 1 pm and it was pretty quiet but was nearly full when we left, let me tell you why.

The concept of Barracuda Restaurant like most fish restaurants is that you buy the fish, get it weighed and then sent off for cooking. The fish was beautifully displayed in a glass cabinet at the back of the restaurant. The types of cooking they offer are Singary, Lemon and Oil, Lemon and Oil Sizzling, Radda, Potatoes, Potatoes Shredded, fried or Tagine.  I decided to have the Lemon and Oil Sea Bream (53 dhs/490g) and my husband opted for the Sangary Sea Bass (75.00 dhs/625g).  Whilst they were off preparing this were presented with a small trolly of starters to choose from, all at 10 dhs a dish, we took some hommous and bread. The hommous was superb, real nutty flavour to it. 

We ordered a green salad (15 dhs) which was huge so if you do go make sure you order to share as one is too big for just one person, same with the french fries big enough to share.   Eventually (after 45 minutes) the fish arrived, it was well worth the wait, absolutely fabulous. I tried my husbands Singary, very tasty with just the right amount of spice. My Lemon and Oil was also amazing, I could actually taste the lemon through the fish.  The fish was also served with a side dish of tiny limes which complimented the dishes so well.

I noticed on their menu that they have a Seafood Mixed Grill which contains fish, three prawns, crab meat and grilled cuttlefish at just 105 dhs, I thought that was good value for money and will probably try that the next time we go.  They also had a calamari Pane, firm favourite of mine at just 35 dhs. Our total spend today came to 193 dhs.

Nothing more to say other than I have found myself a fabulous fish restaurant and can't wait to go back!!  I have uploaded some photos of our experience to my facebook page, click and like, thank you!

Barracuda Restaurant aren't on Twitter or Facebook but you can call them on 04 3940408

For just 40 years the Meridien Group of hotels has been offering hospitality to weary travellers in over 50 countries around the globe, they have quite a presence in the United Arab Emirates, and I have stayed in the three main Hotels in Dubai, but never the one on that much talked about East Coast, so last weekend we ventured over the Hajar Mountains and into Fujeirah to experience the delights of the Le Meridien Al Aqah.

There was of course a reason for this little road trip, and that was to celebrate our 10th Wedding Anniversary and the fact that I was on my feet and back to "normal", one of my main challenges on the road to recovery was to meet Team Al Aqah.  When I walked through the door of the Hotel I felt immensely emotional at the fact that I had actually achieved it!  My first point of contact was Diaa who checked us very swiftly into our room and explained the layout of the hotel and the facilities it had to offer us during our stay.  The room was just breathtaking, not in it's decor as such but in the effort that had been made to personalise it to our taste. The floor was littered in flower petals and a bath towel, much to Mitten's amusement had been changed into an elephant!  You can find all the photos here.

Le Meridien Al Aqah is set on the East Coast of the United Arab Emirates and faces the amazing Indian Ocean, the view from our room (all rooms are sea view) was quite spectacular, a clear view of sea and mountains with the occasional fishing boat dotted along the shore. The overall feeling was one of total calmness and relaxation.

After checking into our Club room (photo's can be found here), we quickly changed into our swim gear and headed down to the pool area to investigate!  Le Meridien Al Aqah is one of the smallest hotels on the coast (room wise) but it boasts the biggest pool/beach/garden area. As the hotel is just a decade old the gardens are well developed, and of course beautifully maintained.  The afternoon was spent on sun loungers relaxing into the Al Aqah experience.

Later that day as the sun went down we headed into the hotel to explore what the Al Aqah had to offer its residents. There is no time to get bored during your stay, there is everything from a Spa to diving! boat trips to manicures!  there is absolutely no need to leave the resort (unless you want to) during your time at the Hotel.  There is a super well equipped kids club which is well staffed, what I particularly liked was the fact that you had to physically collect your child, which could give you an extra 20 minutes of solitude if you needed it.  Mitten particularly enjoyed the crazy golf course, I have always felt you need to be a bit crazy to golf!

That evening after a fabulous dinner (I am writing a separate article on the dining experiences at Al Aqah) we made our way back up to our room to share a glass of something sparkly and enjoy a good nights sleep, not before popping my USB into the huge flat screen television and catching up with a bit of UK drama.   The next morning we opened our curtains to gaze out at the view to find an Anniversary wish carved into the sand!!  There is nothing this hotel won't do to make sure their guests have an amazing Al Aqah experience.  If you are visiting the hotel don't be shy, tell the team why you are there and they will ensure they make it special for you.

After two glorious nights we headed back to Dubai, the journey took us just over two hours but we did stop at The Friday Market to buy a rug, which has lovingly been christened Rug Al Aqah.

All I need to do now is to thank Patrick and the rest of Team Al Aqah for their overwhelming hospitality, we will never forget our 10th Wedding Anniversary experience, thanks to everyone who went that extra mile to make it so so special, in particular The Italian One but you will hear more about him in my Le Meridien Al Aqah "The Food" article.

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What happens on Tuesday's at 8 am? yes the Torture Man from Opa Fitness comes round to torture me in the gym.  I had an early start on him and was on the treadmill when he arrived. We did some work on the bike, loads of leg exercises that nearly killed me, and now I am going to have a bath as I have a feeling tomorrow morning I may well be aching from head to toe!


Weight Loss 1 kg



We are all becoming familiar with the new websites around town tempting us with special offers and this weekend I am pleased to say that Juan Salon has teamed up with Cobone to offer both existing customers and new customers a very very special offer in the Salon.  I won't tell you what it is, just keep your eyes open on their site over the weekend and you shall find. I have taken the following information from their website about how you can snap up one of their special offers:

"Every day Cobone features one amazing thing to do in your city for an unbelievable price.

The deals range from great restaurants to top notch hair salons, from luxury health and beauty spas to breath taking experiences and much more.

We work with the best companies to offer one deal each day with incredibly low prices. Using Cobone is easy!

Register now and get daily alerts of the deal e-mailed to you each morning. If you see something you want to do, sign up.  If enough people sign up,   the deal will be activated. By having a minimum number of buyers we can guarantee businesses lots of customers and ensure you receive the maximum discount.

So when you find a deal that you like, simply enter your name and select from the many payment terms we offer. You won’t be charged until enough people join the deal to activate it.

To make sure the deal reaches the minimum number of people, tell your friends using Facebook or Twitter, e-mail them or phone them up.

When the deal is activated we will post you the coupon that you MUST print and use to redeem the offer"

Happy Shopping!

It was BBC3 this week that brought along my weekly dose of reality TV that I love, in the form of a documentary called A Dangerous Place to Meet my Family.

Dean, a young Yemeni Muslim born and raised in the UK by his British born Father and Yemeni Born Mother returns to Yemen to meet his relatives.  Growing up in Sheffield as a Muslim he yearned to feel the culture of the Country he felt was his home and that in his words would be the place where he would die.  

Arriving in Yemen he was shocked to see the poverty on the streets but embraced his trip with an open heart.  The reunion with his Grandmother was a tearful one. As the family sat around sharing food and memories Dean came to learn that his Grandmother had given birth to his Mother at the age of 11, having being married off at the age of 10.  He hears of another girl who is still in her teens who was forced into marriage by her Father, due a tiny debt.  Dean,  in his words is disgusted to see that people allow what is clearly child abuse in the UK to happen in Yemen and wrap it up in the word Culture. His cousin tells him that it is a woman's place to be at home cooking and running a home and proudly lords his demands over his older Sisters who dutifully obey his every word. Dean laughs it off saying his Sister wouldn't put up with it and that men should have more respect for women, and should be treat as equals.

His 5 week trip passes over with various incidents which feel alien to the British Born Yemeni and he eventually returns to Sheffield to be reunited with his family. Tears all round and a hug for his Mum and Sister, then the statment that I am sure many viewers weren't expecting ....  I am British and I am proud of it.

Dean you rocked!




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