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Restaurants in Dubai

Wafi Mall Pyramid Restaurants

Arabic cuisine

Chinese cuisine

China Garden Jumeira Plaza, Jumeira ,Beach Road,  awful decor, but nice food Now at City Centre also

Chinese Pavilion Phone 3444432 or 3491177 Beach Centre Jumeira

“Old” Spring Bamboo, across from MashreqBank behind Al Ghurair Center

China 2000, down the street from Spice Island, same building as Fakieh Chicken – top quality food, nice décor, decent prices

China Gate, 2nd floor of old building near Clock Tower, next to UAE fisheries and Agriculture building

Chongqing Hotpot, down the street, towards the Fish Roundabout, opposite Marco Polo Hotel (no English sign), don’t expect a nice décor.

Spring Bamboo near Lamcy Plaza, between Nasr roundabout and Lamcy in Bur Dubai

Chinese Hotpot in Al Attar Center, first Floor (ground floor for Brits) , Karama

General  Multiple cuisine

Al Dowar at The Hyatt Regency is a revolving restaurant .  It spins at a rate of one complete turn every two hours - usually, when it rains it doesn't! You get a great view of the airport and the town as well as the port and the sea.  A humungous buffet menu allows you to choose from a really wide selection of food from salads to quail and lobster; and if you're greedy like me, repeats are the order of the day. The longest I stayed there, was for four hours and I waddled out with my belt  undone. For a price of 150/- each it is well worth the money, but watch out for the cost of drinks!

Aviation Club Regarding restaurants I would recommend the Aviation Club restaurants in Garhoud. It's a small village with about 6 or 7 restaurants. You can either eat indoors or eat outdoors and enjoy the nice weather and a beautiful view. I have been to the Chinese restaurant, their food is excellent (everybody enjoyed the food) & in my opinion their prices are reasonable for the quality of food and the experience. I think for each person it costs approximately 40-50 including appetizers, main dish and tea or coffee after the meal. 

Billy Blues at Rydges Plaza Hotel Satwa at the roundabout opposite the fire station American Barbecue food

Boardwalk Cafe   Dubai Creek Golf Club (opp. City Centre)  Cost of a Meal: Main course costs approx. 40-75 Dirhams, starters 30-45 Dirhams. Opinion: Situated on the creek, the cafe provides one of the best views of Dubai. The food is excellent, the atmosphere is very relaxed and restful. The fabulous location is perfect for a meal under the stars or an afternoon brunch. Watch out for the seagulls! 

Chili's  Jumeira , City Centre and Garhoud American chain of restaurant

Coco's  Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Attar Centre, 3326333 (there's also one in Deira City Centre above Ikea - I personally don't like it as well, probably the location). Food is "California", trendy. Main course - Dhs 35-40. 
Nice ambiance, great desserts, pleasant service. I've had mixed reports here, judge for yourselves....Leigh

French Connection  Sheikh Zayed Road near Defence roundabout  also in the bottom of the Centrepoint Building in Bur Dubai has very good chocolate croissants and a good atmosphere. 

Fudruckers  At Garhoud, especially as you can load up at their salad bar. If you go regularly they will give you a 10% disc.

IKEA Restaurant, Deira City Centre,  Main Course Dhs 15 -19, Great value for money. Family-oriented. 

Mazaj  Lebanese restaurant in Century village - Near Irish village. excellent food quality. Also serves shisha & alcohol


Aviation Food corner near Al Bustan Rotana Hotel,  nice outside seating area, fast food. 


Khazana at Al Nasa Leisureland Phone 3360061 Fax 3360500

Highly recommended.

The Pavilion in Spinneys (Jumeira) Phone 3941483 Fax 3941559

Good and reasonable restaurants, where to start? In any non-hotel-based
restaurant, two people can eat for Dhs.60 and certainly no
more than Dhs.120. The Pavilion in Spinneys (Jumeira) is particularly


BICE at the Hilton Dubai Jumeira ( the 'new' Hilton past the Jumeira Beach Hotel, not the old one near the Trade Centre, which is now "The Trade Centre Hotel")

Telephone 3991111 Fantastic Italian food, We went as a group of  four and everyone thought their meals were great. Wines are EXPENSIVE (Dhs 150+ + + per bottle), but the food, service and ambiance is excellent. Entrees about Dhs 40, Main courses about Dhs 60.

Davinci's Italian Bistro Airport Hotel Phone 7039123/4 or 2823464 opposite Al Bustan Rotana

Great Italian food at reasonable prices. Always busy and popular. Main Courses from around Dhs 30

Neat pizzas and salads as well as other Italian fare cost around 50 AED per person excluding drinks. 

Don Corleone at the Metropolitan Hotel ( next to Metroplex Cinemas opposite Safa Park on Shk Zayeed Road) 

Italian food; excellent variety; great ambience; cost around AED 80 per person. 

Italian connection (Karama) Phone 3353001

Great pizza and pasta at reasonable prices. Well worth the visit. About Dhs 25 for a main course. Easy parking. Located opposite ARENCO building in Karama. Turn off for Nasr Cinema, take a hard right turn, go to the end of the road, right again till end of road which is only about 100 metres. Turn right again you should be able to see it. It is about 200 metres on your right.

Everything I've tried so far has been delicious, with main courses priced between 25 and about 35 dirhams. Very friendly atmosphere and welcoming to children as well.

La Moda 2nd floor Intercontinental Hotel Deira Phone 2227171

A typical Bistro. Good consistent food at ok prices. Drinks are expensive.  Gets noisy and much much busier later in the night. Booking is essential.

Pizzeria Uno, City Centre 

Great pizzas ( especially the Deep Pan Pizzas), Steak and Pasta , kids welcome, Huge servings  (Order sparingly the first time you go). Cost is around Dhs100 for two adults and two children.

Kids Pizza's are Dhs 13. One between two young children is enough.

Take away and delivery available.



Automatic restaurants all around the city. Good value

Al Reef restaurants all around city. Good value, probably better than the Automatic.

Reem al Lawadi on Beach Road Jumeira 3 next to the small Jumbo Electronics and HSBC. Fantastic atmosphere and food. More expensive than the two above, but worth it. Don't get ripped off by ordering lots of dishes on suggestion from the waiters. I did.


Cactus Cantina

8th floor, Rydges Plaza Hotel, Satwa. 3982274. Mexican food. Main course - Dhs 30-35 Great atmosphere. Free beverages (of any kind...) for ladies on Thursday afternoons. Nice view if you're by the window. 


Mexican food, steak Dhs45-48, open buffet Dhs33. 
It's behind Dnata. You can see it if you are coming from RR Show Room on the right hand side. There are a group of Fast Food restaurants also. Baskin Robins, Caravan, Arbey's, etc... 

The Alamo 

Tex Mex food.


Vegetarian Food Availability


This information is supplied by a member of DWC staff, Fraser MacDonald. Thanks Fraser!

There is a reasonable range of vegetarian food in Dubai, and most of the supermarkets are pretty well stocked.

We usually do most of our fruit and vegetable shopping in the Carrefour Hypermarket at the Deira City-Centre Mall. It is the largest supermarket and is pretty well stocked. You will find Soy milk and Tofu there. Another good place for staples is Union Co-op. It is cheaper than most of the other supermarkets, but you will need to shop else-where for anything fancy.

There are branches of Choitrams and Spinneys supermarkets all over the city.
They stock the staples and also carry frozen vegetarian food such as Linda Macartney, Quorn, Morning Fresh Farms from the US and Amy's Vegan foods.

Spinneys also sell Vegetarian food from the UK supermarket TESCO.
These supermarkets can be expensive however, and prices can be widely different from one supermarket to another. It pays to shop around.

There is now an organic supermarket near Satwa which stocks a range of vegetarian and non-vegetarian foods.

Be warned! Stocks of veggie foods do run-out in the shops sometimes, and although there is always a good supply of vegetables, sometimes you cannot get hold of 'treats' It's worth keeping a stock in your home freezer!

If you need vitamin supplements or specialist vegan foods (rice milk etc) then try Holland and Barrett in the Town Centre Mall on Jumeira Beach Road.

There are tons of restaurants at all levels serving veggie food, from Indian and Chinese and fast food to luxury restaurants in hotels.

For a full restaurant guide, I'd recommend the Dubai Explorer handbook.

Small Local Restaurants Indian or Pakistani

We have been to several small local-type restaurants and they are good for take out. I do not usually like to eat in at local restaurant though because I can not relax. They are usually cramped and the family area is usually upstairs with a low ceilings with tables next to the wall with the chair of the person behind me touching my chair, etc. So we do take out food especially when the unexpected company arrives. 

Karachi Darbar located all around Dubai

Really tasty Indian/Pakistani /Chinese food at bargain prices and with a sense of eating where the "normal" people eat.

For those lean days as payday approaches and you rashly changed your dirhams into southern roubles or northern pesos and are suffering liquidity problems don't despair, you needn't starve. Dubai has a myriad of cheap eating places where you can fill yourself to the point of discomfort for less than D10 .

Karachi Darbar is all over Dubai and while not the best is usually the easiest to locate.

In Bur Dubai India House is one of many southern Indian vegetarian restaurants, with its outstanding feature being the chicory flavoured coffee. Try a tahli if you're hungry (D7) as they will keep filling up your dishes. Dosa marsala, rava marsala, idli or uttaphan are all great light meals and you'll have change from D5.

Venus Restaurant in Karama is also excellent, a wee bit more up market but the food is better. You may have to pay D1 more per dish than India House and the coffee isn't as idiosyncratic either. 

Taheera Restaurant on the Mustafawi intersection in Bur Dubai does a great dahl fry, chicken buriani and the usual range of tikkas etc. Once again plenty of change from D10 here.

Shawarmas off the street are great, only available after dark and the best felafel sandwich is from Al Mallah in Satwa (an outdoor restaurant on the main drag, look for green).

Eat up, don't be scared of "Dubai belly" and always leave a tip of one or two Ds.

Good value places like ; India House of course, in Bur Dubai, Venus, in Karama (cheap, vegetarian South Indian)...

The "Eat and Drink" Restaurants - in Karama and on Al Wasl Road near United Co Op - offer a whole barbecued "chicken with service" for 17 Dhs. This feeds a family of four. Fresh mango, lychee, papaya etc. range from Dhs 5 to 10 and the fish and chips, at Dhs 12, are excellent. Meals come with vegetables, bread, hummus, pickles and salad.

The Automatic Restaurant chain offers healthy value Lebanese meals in the Dhs 25 per person range.

Johnny Rocket's on Beach Road is a "must" for the best American Cheese Burger in town. With a chocolate malt it will set you back Dhs 25. Unfortunately, their fries are frozen.

The Al Malla Lebanese restaurant chain, on Al Diyafa Street in Satwa and on Al Wadah Road in Sharjah, offer great budget meals. A plate heaped with lamb chops and fries is Dhs 13, with hummus, pickles, salad and bread included. Dhs 6 buys two shawarmas a fresh fish sandwich or a cheese bread. Their fruit drinks and milk shakes are filling, but watch out for the ice cream concoctions. At Dhs 20 each, dessert will blow the budget.

The Admiral Plaza Hotel rates a mention for its early evening dinner specials. Wednesday night, before 8 pm, enjoy a perfectly cooked steak with fresh rolls, baked potato and pint sized beverage for Dhs 35.

The Dubai International Marine Spa near Palm Court on Beach Road has good value in its Friday brunch at Dhs 65 - choice of International or Mexican restaurants.

The Alamo – Jumeira

A favourite for after work drinks and Sunday brunches.  Mainly Western ex-pat crowd, a firmly established venue serving Tex-Mex and cheap(ish) beverages during happy hour. I believe live bands are regular.  100 dhs. should be enough for 2 main courses and a shared dessert.

Bamboo Lagoon – JW Marriot Hotel (Deira)

An Asian/Japanese/South Pacific – style buffet restaurant. We went for the ‘All Eat and Drink’ buffet at 120dhs and got great food (best steak I’ve had in Dubai) live entertainment and beverages all night; slightly more expensive than normal but worth the extra for the quality and diversity of the food.  Watch for the girls with the coconuts!!

Barasti – Mina Seyahi Hotel (on the beach)

Popular beach-side bar/restaurant on the beach.  Good for early evening sundowners, cocktails and reasonable food.  Fantastic location.

Bentoya – off Sheikh Zayed Road

Those more experienced in Japanese food tell me the cuisine here is of a high standard.  The restaurant is small and unpretentious, the service good and the food apparently authentic.  I found it expensive for what you got – maybe that’s Japanese dining.  People tell me that the take-aways are also very good. 

Bice – Hilton (on the beach)

Very posh Italian eatery in the Hilton hotel.  It has the reputation for fine Italian cuisine and a very trendy place to be seen.  We found the food to be good but not worth the heavy price tag that came with it – service was very slow!  I had the impression Bice was more interested in Bice than the customer – others would not agree.  A good place to take overseas visitors as it will impress with its surroundings and good food. Bank on at least 70/80 dhs a head without alcohol.

Blue Elephant – Al Bustan Rotana (nr. Airport)

A very stylish and up-market Thai restaurant within a very nice hotel.  It is one of the most expensive but worth it and sometimes they have a fantastic buffet deal.  A restaurant to impress, great service and excellent food with a fabulous interior.  Bank on 150-200  dhs. for 2 without alcohol.  Try absolutely anything and it will be good.

Brauhaus – ‘German’

Went here for a ‘theme/promotion night’ of German cuisine and drinks.  It was heavily meat-based and very authentic ‘Bavarian’.  Great beer and leiderhoesen (sp) everywhere.  The breads, meat and beer were of high quality and these nights tend to be very popular as they are ‘only’ low 100’s each!  Don’t go if you don’t like ‘heavy’ food.

Cactus Cantina in Rydges Hotel - Satwa  

A favourite Mexican eatery with promotions most nights.  Big portions of standard Mexican fare and Tuesday sees any drink for 8 dirhams (including margharitas)!  Mexican theme inside and good service.  Can book for parties and I believe they give Salsa dancing classes too!  Bank on 60/70 dhs. for 2 without alcohol.

Cactus Jacks nr. airport

Another very good Mexican with arguably better food than ‘Cactus Cantina’. They seem to do fewer promotions and the service can be slower but portions huge!  More or less standard price for Mexican – it has a nice outside terrace area and an English-style pub is next door should you feel the need!

Café Ceramique – Jumeira

As the name suggests a café which with a focus on pottery.  The idea is that you enjoy the food (mainly bagel-based) while the kids make or break some pottery.  Actually, the idea is a good one and the often schools go there to encourage kids to be crafty.  They have a nice terrace with a sea-view(ish) and good breakfast specials.  Good service and for 25dhs you get breaky and coffee while reading the complimentary papers.  Lunch is good too, I’m not sure if they are open at night.

Chilis – upper market fast-food place (American style)

You may know Chilis already, if you don’t it is worth a visit if you are in an ‘up-market MacDonalds frame of mind’.  Actaully the food is very good and if ‘American-style’ service and feel is your thing then you will enjoy your visit.  The emphasis is on Mexican with the portion size on American.  Be careful, the bill mounts up without you noticing  - kids always seem to like it but if you don’t have them, why listen to someone else’s? 150 dhs for my family of 4!

Cinnabon – various outlets

This is mainly about a delicious, hot, moreish, fudgeyish, cinnamony bun called a ‘Cinnabon’ – and quite sinful it is!  Have one after shopping in City Centre!

Ciro’s Pomodoro Mina Seyahi Hotel (on the beach)

Another one of those ‘classy’, pretentious and totally over-rated restaurants that is more into itself than quality food or service (maybe I went on a bad night!).  It’s in the basement of the hotel and seems to lack atmosphere – the food (‘international’ – but mainly European) was very ordinary and for just under 200 dhs (without alcohol) was not value for money. 

Colonnade – Jumeirah Beach Hotel

This is a buffet-style restaurant within the JBH and has excellent food.  The full buffet offers an immense choice and the there is no way you could sample everything!  Unfortunately, the restaurant itself is disappointing as it feels like you are sitting in some sort of concourse, in the winter months the better option is to sit outside on the terrace.  At 120 dhs each (without alcohol) it’s a biggy but there are cheaper 2-course options (still buffet-style). You cannot use ‘The Entertainer’ for the buffet, only for a la carte.

Cucina – JW Marriot  An Italian place with a real Italian feel to it.  It has nooks and crannies an open kitchen and loads of atmosphere. The food is good the prices are reasonable and service friendly and efficient.  Well worth a try!

Dhow and Anchor – Jumeriah Beach Hotel A favourite with those missing an English pub, it does its best to replicate one.  Peanuts on the table, a pint of Boddingtons in hand and football on the tele.; what more do you want?  Good ‘pub grub’ served in the ‘pub’ or on its terrace (the fish and chips are the best in town!).  Be careful outside of happy hour (530 –7pm) the pints can be 25dhs each!

Glasshouse – Hilton by the creek  A very stylish restaurant for a special occasion. Three of us spent over 500dhs. having consumed 2/ 3 courses each and a bottle of wine!  However, the food was good and the wine list impressive.  It has very much an Asian theme to it.  It’s a place to be seen in when price doesn’t really matter – portions are not huge!

Go West – Jumeriah Beach Hotel    Themed ‘Cowboy-type’ restaurant with big portions of everything and reasonable quality. A live band a;most every night (quite good actually) and a good place for kids with its themey décor.  I had a very disappointing burger – big but bland.  Prices O.K. at around 30-dhs.ish for simple mains – hot nuts keep coming to keep you drinkin!

Il Rustico - Italian Rydges Hotel Satwa Another Italian serving good quality, reasonably priced food.  The service is good (nice garlic bread, FOC on arrival) and great pizzas.  My wife always has a pasta dish and is never disappointed.  A good cheap mid-week outing, around 30/40 dhs a main.

Lime Tree – café by Jumeirah Mosque

An institution with many (including me) this NZ run café is based on those you would find in NZ.  For the uninitiated, great food, huge muffins good coffee and generous helpings.  Original recipes and reasonable prices make this a great place anytime during the day.  Upstairs is a nice terrace over-looking the sea no kids allowed up here!

Mosaico in Emirates Towers For pure class it’s hard to beat.  This became a regular of ours and is a great place to take visitors.  Mainly Italian in cuisine, its interior is centred around one huge mosaic and the service is unobtrusive and expert.  The food is excellent (although could be more generous in volume) and the wine list is good (some as cheap as 110dhs a bottle!!).  Upon arrival you are assailed by the offerings of Italian bread – go and see what I mean.  Sometimes they do menu deals of 80/100dhs for 5 courses – watch out for them! 

Pax Romana, Sheikh Zayed in Dusit Dubai Hotel Perhaps the most over-the-top Italian I have ever been into.  The décor is stunning but overpowering and the service a little the same way too.  However, the food is good and you can sit in complete seclusion but still be in the restaurant.  It’s a strange experience but not unpleasant and it’s one of those places that you have to go to in order to make your own mind up.  We enjoyed the night but haven’t been back since – we keep meaning to!  To be honest I can’t remember the price for the meal but it wasn’t expensive considering the surroundings.

Red Lion – Sheikh Zayed Metropolitan Hotel

Not surprisingly an ‘English’ pub, complete with thick smoke and darts.  A real after-work drinkers haunt, probably not the place for a romantic dinner for two!

Spice Island – Renaissance Hotel –Deira

An institution as a Friday brunch buffet.  At 120/130dhs a person it’s pricey but the choice is amazing and the kids are looked after by clowns, etc…There is masses of food and the soft drinks are included for this price.  Paying more as a set price will get you alcohol included too.  For me, the noise and the clamour of the kids was too much (and this includes my own kids) and wasn’t my idea of a good dining experience.  However, for families it’s a good option – especially if you go with other families.

Teatro – Rotana Hotel Sheikh Zayed 

Another favourite, stylish international cuisine and open working kitchens representing different cuisines.  Good, professional service, consistently good food and great wine list and wine cellar – you can walk through it!  Classy feel to the place.  Meal for two would be approaching 200dhs for a 3-course (no alcohol)

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