As my previous post suggested, I seem to be doing no end of travelling this year!! My latest trip was over to Dubai during October half term. I was so nervous about what to pack in my 30kg as you hear so many horror stories! Hopefully this post will put your mind at ease… put simply… dress for Spring in London and you can’t go too far wrong!
I arrived at Heathrow on the 25/10 for my 1pm flight. I flew with Qantas who were impeccable from check in to landing. There is not one area I could fault!! I checked in super early so I could relax, eat breakfast and peruse the designer stores!
Before perusing Gucci and Ted Baker, I ate at Strada… highly recommend their ‘Golden Bread’ which is a Sicilian version of French Toast! See below! 😍👌 After the deliciousness I ensured I was stocked up with a large bottle of water and some healthy snacks for during the flight.
I find it’s so important to be comfortable on a flight so I wore my George at Asda Wonderfit skinny jeans in black, my trusty white tank from Topshop, a sheer black shirt from H&M, and my glitter trainers from Primark. I also packed my hoodie from Primark and my Parker slope Scarf from S&D. I ensured I wore any jewellery that I might lose or might tangle… hello Garland necklace and Seine Threader earrings!!
Miles met me the other end and off we headed to the Villa Rotana, that boy picks them…. 1 metro stop from the Burj Khalifa and Dubai Mall!! 😍 Our room was spacious, had a kitchenette area and a view of the Burj Khalifa! Perfect!
We woke to sunshine and temperatures in the 30s! Our first day of exploration took us to the Burj Kalifa and Dubai Mall. As we were heading into the mall, I was worried what to wear, settled with my bias cut midi dress from Topshop and a pair of flat sandals. To be honest, this outfit couldn’t have been more perfect!! Knees were covered as were my shoulders due to cap sleeves. I carried a scarf in my bag, just in case, but it wasn’t needed. The mall is amazing! Over my 4 day trip I still didn’t see every inch of it! The Burj Khalifa is as breathtaking in real life! The views were to be the best ever! Evening took us to the Reel Movies Platinum Experience. Soft reclining couches, blankets and pillows, tables and lamps and pre ordered meals and drinks for during the film. Yet again, unsure of evening etiquette, I wore my khaki midi dress and laser cut white shirt, both from Primark. At this point I realised, pretty much anything goes- from strappy sandals and a bandage dress to maxi dress and flip flops…. it doesn’t matter as long as you look and act respectfully.
Thursday saw a trip with Nicki to Karama for discount shopping. Again, I was so anxious in terms of what to wear as Karama is in the older districts with a more conservative policy than the main tourist area. I finally settled on a skimming maxi skirt from New Look which I picked around 2 years ago, my orange cami top from Topshop and my trusty later cut white shirt. This outfit was near perfect- respectful and cool on limbs. Karama was replica and pashmina heaven! The evening was spent in the incredible Burj al Arab for cocktails in the Skylounge before heading to one of their restaurants where we had views of the building itself. The cocktails were beautifully crafted and deliciously decadent. I wore my silver maxi skirt, lace top from Zara, my Karama bought pashmina and a pair of Carvela wedges. This way I could be both respectful and dressed up. I piled on the bling to finish the look.
Friday was a beach day. Another interesting take on Dubai life, what do you wear as a cover up!? I couldn’t wear my tiny cheesecloth, backless dresses or my short denim shorts… I settled for a mint colour dress that should have been for evening!! Due to the floaty material and colour I was able to pass it off for daytime. We paid for our loungers and towels and parked ourselves on Jumeirah Beach front watching the skydivers and camels. We took the camels as a sign for what sound happen in the evening. Come evening, we headed to Serafinos which has views of the dancing fountains and the Burj. As my tan was developing nicely I wore my purple slip dress from Oasis, Carvela Gold heels and my Karama pashmina!! My jewellery, as always, was S&D… perks of being a Stella Stylist! Serafino’s food and customer service was disappointing. We would have been willing to spend all night there making our way through the menu but their focus seemed to be on families… great place if you have kids, if you want to avoid children I’d suggest a late table booking!! We left earlier than we had anticipated so headed into Dubai mall in search of the Camel Milk Cafe!! Yes we had Camel milk milkshakes- date and chocolate flavours! I’d definitely recommend this unusual experience.
My final full day in Dubai was the Saturday! The early start took us to the gold and spice souk in the old town. We paid 2 dirhams to cross the creek in traditional format. As it was the old town I wore the same as I did for Karama. Again, being covered up was my main priority. I picked up some beautiful gold glitter henna transfers… so tacky they are stunning! The souks are overwhelmingly busy. An hour is plenty but it’s a to do list essential. I headed up to the rooftop pool for one last soak of sun while Miles wandered to the mall to see if he could pick up a suit. However, he also comes back with a pair of gold wedged converse 😍😍 all my favourite things in one beautiful package! We got ready earlier then normal and went to the Marriott hotel in the Marina for Sunset cocktails. I wore outfit from the night before but changed my shoes to the Carvela wedges, tied my hair up and stuck my bling henna on! The views of the sunset over the palm were spectacular. We also ordered Steak chilli fries to keep any hunger at bay! 3 cocktails were consumed, my favourite being the 24 carat gold- goldshlager and prosecco topped with edible gold! Post cocktails included a stroll over to the marina where we grabbed coffee and dates from Bateel. Never have tasted dates like it… so soft! Then over to jumeirah beach to pick up a shwarma… because, when in the Middle East!!! Well, a girl needs to line her stomach before packing!
The Sunday morning arrived, I was packed and ready to go wearing what I arrived in, but swapping out my glitter trainers for my new converse. This time I flew Emirates. Must say, the on,y redeeming factor is that Bullet for my Valentine were on my flight and the Samoan Rugby Team. I booked an extra legroom seat due to my impairment but was expected to move for a family to have the cot space… the thank you… a mini toblerone!! That’s it… just a mini toblerone! No upgrade on frequent flyer cards, a MINI CHOCOLATE BAR!! Not even a full sized one!! I thought my flight would be made better by watching Tom Hiddlestone… a box set of The Night Manager had my name on it… until cabin crew collected headphones 30 minutes before landing, meaning, yep you guessed it, missed the last 20 minutes of the final episode!! Not the best flight in the history of trips, especially when Emirates are usually prided on their customer care and flights… obviously not this flight! Sadly, I’ll probably end up having to fly with them again. Disappointing after great service with Qantas.
Stella and dot can be purchased via: http://www.stelladot.co.uk/sites/laurentoner
Sadly back in the cold, but I’m sure it won’t be long until another visit to warmer climates!
Lots of Love
Copyright Lauren Toner 2011-2016