The Bulgari Resort Dubai, a 'jewel' in the crown of Bulgari brand, opened today, receiving its first guests following the unveiling of the property to a select audience at a gala event earlier.
Through a discovery journey of the resort in four different locations, guests were dazzled by ballet performances, live music, and a star-studded red carpet.
Exclusively situated on the man-made seahorse shaped island of Jumeira Bay and developed as an urban oasis by Dubaibased holding company Meraas, the resort brings Mediterranean village charm to the vibrant city of Dubai.
The 1.4 million-sq-ft property is a first-of-its-kind development for Bulgari, both in terms of scale and magnitude. The complex features the resort, joined by six residential buildings of 173 sea-facing apartments, 15 private mansions, a Beach Club, and Bulgari's first Marina and Yacht Club.
The resort itself includes 101 hotel rooms and suites and 20 hotel villas, including one Bulgari Villa.
Bulgari brand ambassadors and VIPs added some celebrity sparkle to the gala opening event, held on the island. They included model Bella Hadid, Oscar-winning actress Alicia Vikander, model and actor Jon Kortajarena, and model Jasmine Sanders.
Regional celebrities included the Lebanese star Nadine Nassib Njeim, Egyptian cinema power couple Mona Zaki and her husband Ahmed Helmy, Tunisian actress Hend Sabry, and Lebanese TV Host Wissam Breidy who was master of ceremony accompanied by his Tunisian wife and model Rym Saidy. They were joined by top international press and a number of eminent Emirati dignitaries and public figures from Dubai’s thriving arts and culture scene.
Singer Matteo Brancaleoni, one of the leading Italian jazz interpreters, brought on stage the best 10 songs of his repertoire combining international titles and emblematic Italian successes such as Volare and O Sole Mio.
Italian culture was at the heart of the event, including orchestral performances, a scenographic light show and the dance music of famous Italian deejay DJ Mokai.
A long-distance light installation, visible from land and sea, ensured Bulgari left its indelible mark on the Dubai skyline to be seen from far and wide.
A delectable Italian dinner was specially designed by Michelin-starred chef Niko Romito, the curator of Bulgari’s Il Ristorante.
Before guests danced away the evening under the stars at the chocolate party held in the Yacht Club, Bulgari CEO Jean-Christophe Babin spoke of his pride at the resort’s launch.
He said: “This is a momentous day for us here at Bulgari, to launch in one of the most talked about cities in the world. We hope this architectural masterpiece, not only the stunning design of the resort by our architectural team, but the magnificence of a seahorse-shaped island, will truly put The Bulgari Resort Dubai on the map as being one of the city’s most iconic destinations”.
The event was also attended by Meraas Group Chairman Abdulla Al Habbai and other Meraas officials.
The resort is expected to become the destination of choice for visitors seeking the solitude of an island escape, the residential feeling of a private house, yet situated just minutes from the heart of the vibrant city and its cultural attractions, said senior Bulgari officials.
The Bulgari Resort Dubai, designed by renowned Italian architectural firm Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel, is only the fifth Bulgari branded hotel.
The understated luxury of the resort takes a while to seep in and a walk through its various facilities fills one with the warmth of Italian hospitality. The bespoke designs and luxurious furnishings all have the hallmark of Bulgari brand.
Both the interiors and exteriors have been created with the same detail and precision of a Bulgari jewel: pairing rare, raw materials according to colour, texture and feel, and sculpting them into objects of enduring beauty, said Babin, addressing a press conference at the new property on the eve of the opening of the resort.
"Dubai is a visionary city and Bulgari is a visionary Italian brand known for its bespoke service and warm hospitality," he said.
The luxury that Bulgari brings is all about innovation and creativity that is steeped in its tradition of jewellery making, said Silvio Ursini, executive vice-president of Bulgari in charge of Bulgari Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.
Dubbing the Dubai property as the jewel in the crown of Bulgari, Ursini said the resort sports contemporary Italian luxury resdiential design.
"Styled with illuminated gardens and pools and resembling a traditional seaside Italian village, the resort blends Mediterranean landscaping with the natural surroundings of the shores of the Arabian Gulf," he noted.
For guests looking for ultimate space and privacy, the resort's five categories of villas enable families and friends to create a bespoke experience.
Ranging from one- to three-bedrooms, with options to connect villas, the properties vary from 175-sq-m to 540-sq-m in size, all with a personal butler service and private pool and gazebo.
The 540-sq-m Bulgari Villa is one of the resort's highlights, ideal for dignitaries or small private functions. Features include a large living area, a sunken bathtub and a private lush garden with a large outdoor swimming pool, to ensure guests are provided with every home comfort they could possibly need.
The resort offers three types of rooms and three categories of suites.
The introductory tariffs in December range from Dh2,500 ($680) for the basic room to Dh20,000 ($5,444) for villas. The top-end 540-sq-m Bulgari villa is priced at Dh40,000 ($10,889) per night.
Meanwhile, the 1,700-sq-m Bulgari Spa adds a further luxurious touch to the guest experience with seven treatment rooms and a 25-m indoor pool with full sea view through its magnificent floor to ceiling windows.
Guests will enjoy the ultimate wellbeing experience, immersing in innovative treatments, therapies and grooming for both men and women, in addition to thermal and bathing experiences.
Adjacent to the spa, a state-of-the-art fitness centre offers Workshop Gymnasium signature training method: a results-driven approach that redefines the very concept of well-being.
The resort offers several dining options as well. Renowned Michelin-starred Italian chef Niko Romito has curated a blend of modern and classical Italian concepts exclusively for II Ristorante by Niko Romito, interpreting the exquisite flavours of Italy with modern simplicity.
In the same space of II Ristorante, guests will find II Bar, where they can enjoy signature beverages at the oval bar.
Guests can also enjoy a more casual dining experience embodied by a menu rich with Italian simplicity and flavours at II Cafe, while the classically-designed Lobby Lounge, offers the residential atmosphere of a living room where guests can enjoy Italian-themed teas and coffees in a relaxed setting.
The resort's beach club features private villa cabanas, a children's pool and Little Gems Kids' Club while an outdoor pool and restaurant, La Spiaggia, is the perfect spot to wind down by day or night.
Nestled on the end of the Marina, the world's first Bulgari Marina & Yacht Club is a unique destination which overlooks a 50-boat harbour and recreates the charm of a Mediterranean village in the heart of the Arabian Gulf.
Featuring amenities including the Yacht Club Italian Restaurant specialising in fish, the members lounge, outdoor pool and bar, and the first branded kids' club, the Little Gems Club, the Yacht Club is set to become an exclusive destination.
The 360-sq-m Bulgari Ballroom located in the Yacht Club can be customised for large scale events and offers state-of-the-art technology. With a stunning sea view, this location is fit for bespoke special occasions and business events alike.
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