With its collection of palatial artificial islands, scores of high end shopping, and astronomical architecture, Dubai is a city of extravagance. I spent the summer there in 2023 (yes, it was murderously hot!). Given that I couldn’t hang around outdoors, I spent my time checking out all the best luxury hotels. So I made a list of the six best options for solo travellers.

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1. Bulgari Resort Dubai

If you want the best of the best, check in at Bulgari Resort Dubai. Antonio Citterio and Patricia Viel’s understated architecture and design blends modern Italian elegance with Middle Eastern touches. Unsurprisingly, the end result is nothing short of stunning.

The entrance of Bulgari Resort Dubai (image courtesy of bulgarihotels.com)

Set on a man-made, seahorse-shaped island in Jumeirah Bay, the property has a 1700-square meter spa and a private yacht club. It’s perfect for solo travelers in need of some uninterrupted R&R.

Only the finest materials have been used to create the Bulgari Resort Dubai. For instance, the bathrooms are covered in travartine from Tivoli. Not to mention the spa reception desk made of precious green onyx from Iran.

2. Mandarin Oriental Jumeira

Situated on its own private slice of Jumeirah Beach, this Mandarian Oriental outpost shines as a destination for solo travelers unto itself.

Photo of Jumeirah Beach by Pranav Madhu on Unsplash

There are views of the Arabian Gulf and the Dubai skyline from the balconies. Furthermore, there’s an in-house Michelin-starred restaurant, Tasca by José Alvillez. Considering that, you may never want to leave.

But for solo travelers who do want to venture out, the hotel offers plenty of activities. For example, there are dune buggy excursions as well as desert safaris, perfumery workshops, and hot air balloon rides.

3. The Lana – Dorchester Collection

The Dorchester Collection is celebrated from London to Los Angeles for its artful blend of contemporary decadence and traditional elegance, and the Lana is no exception. Clean yet lavish interiors by Gilles & Boissier include more than 50 original artworks that were specially commissioned for the space.

Photo of Downtown Dubai by ZQ Lee on Unsplash

There’s a Dior spa and eight restaurants, including Riviera by Jean Imbert and Jara by Martín Berasategui, to keep solo travelers plenty happy on-site. But when the outside world beckons, you’re minutes from Downtown Dubai and all of its many attractions. Some of the seemingly infinite options include:

  • Shopping at Souk Al Bahar, a modernized version of a traditional Arabian marketplace (that means there’s air con)
  • The Dubai Fountain Show is the world’s largest choreographed fountain system and it’s located at the foot of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa. It’s free to watch the spectacular show from the Burj Park or the waterfront promenade, but I loved having a front row seat away from the crowds while dining on Thiptara’s air conditioned terrace. (The fountain show happens every 30 minutes from 6-11pm.)
  • The Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo has over 140 species of marine life, a massive tunnel aquarium, and glass-bottom boat rides
  • CinemaCity Fountain Views is the best luxury cinema I’ve tried anywhere on earth (even surpassing my long-time London favorite, the Odeon Luxe & Dine in Islington). There are massive leather recliners, an extensive menu with seat-side service, and free valet parking.

4. The Dubai Edition

The soaring ceilings and theatrical spiral staircase in the lobby make for a dramatic entry into The Dubai Edition. The rooms maintain the same airiness and minimalist aesthetic while also managing to feel warm and inviting.

Photo of Dubai Fountain by Raimond Klavins on Unsplash

The high-end finishes and muted tones make The Dubai Edition a tranquil retreat despite it’s location smack in the center of Downtown Dubai. You’re in walking distance to the Burj Khalifa, Dubai Fountain, and the massive Dubai Mall complex with its many points of interest. These include the Dubai Aquarium & Underwater Zoo and the luxury CinemaCity Fountain Views movie theater. Solo travelers staying here will have it all—the high energy night life surrounding and the peaceful oasis within.

5. Bab Al Shams Desert Resort

45 minutes’ drive into the desert from Downtown Dubai, the traditional Arabian architecture and natural materials of Bab Al Shams makes the place feel like a fairy tale oasis come to life.

Bab Al Shams Desert Resort

It’s ideal for solo travelers who want to spend at least some of their stay close to nature. On my last visit, I wanted it all (desert AND city), so I split my hotel time between Bab Al Shams and ME Dubai (next on this list of best luxury hotels in Dubai for solo travelers).

With camel treks and falconry excursions available, not to mention a hammam offering traditional Maghreb ceremonial baths, your time away from downtown will be anything but boring.

6. ME Dubai

The list of best luxury hotels in Dubai for solo travelers wouldn’t be complete without mentioning ME Dubai by Meliá. Both the building and the interiors were created by the legendary late architect Zaha Hadid, the first woman to win the Pritzker and the mastermind behind such stunners as The Guangzhou Opera House and One Thousand Museum in Miami.

Her signature signature sinuous curves are everywhere, making it feel a lot like you’re sleeping on a spaceship. And a lavish one—at 505 square feet, even the smallest rooms are bigger than many an apartment in Manhattan.

Bathtub at ME Dubai by Meliá

Located in the Burj Khalifa district, solo travelers will find themselves surrounded by every luxurious amenity Dubai has to offer. But given the on-site spa, the seven restaurants and bars, and the rooftop pool, you’d be forgiven if you never set foot off the property.

Need more hotel intel? Here are the 30 best luxury hotels in Shenzhen, China!

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