We can certainly think of a number of reasons for eschewing tropical far-flung locales in favor of the United Arab Emirates when it comes to tying the knot. With its year-round sunshine, jaw-dropping scenery that comprises of pristine beaches, rugged mountains, and idyllic deserts, plus the plethora of exotic resorts spanning from Fujairah to Abu Dhabi, it’s no wonder that the Gulf country is emerging as a top spot for destination weddings for international couples.
According to a new survey, the UAE is the Middle East‘s top location for getting married, experts reveal. The survey was conducted by Dubai-based event organizer QnA International at the 5th annual Destination Wedding Planners (DWP) Congress, which took place recently in Los Cabos, Mexico.
The UAE has played host to a number of high-profile nuptials in the past, including the union of Bollywood star Mohit Marwah and Antara Motiwala in Ras Al Khaimah last February. The Emirates also serves as a charming spot to get engaged, too. Eva Longoria‘s now-husband José Bastón popped the big question while the couple was vacationing in Dubai in 2015.
Director of QnA International, Sidh N.C., said in a statement: “The results have been very interesting, and it’s encouraging to see the UAE make further progress in establishing itself as a hotspot for destination weddings.”
Based on information gathered by a number of different wedding planners, the UAE ranks among the top five destinations in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia for saying ‘I do’. Furthermore, the survey also revealed that though the average number of weddings organized each year by wedding planners in the Middle East is much lower than those in other locations, it still accounts for 5% of all destination weddings.
For brides and grooms-to-be thinking about exchanging vows in the UAE, we’ve rounded up five of the most idyllic venues around the country.
Royal Mirage One & Only, Dubai
The Royal Mirage One & Only is considered one of Dubai’s most opulent destinations for weddings. Whether you choose to exchange vows in one of the resort’s majestic ballrooms, an Arabian-styled fortress, beach, or its perfectly-manicured gardens, the majestic resort offers the fairytale wedding you’ve always imagined.
Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi
Situated on Abu Dhabi’s coast, the luxurious Emirates Palace boasts a selection of indoor and outdoor venues that are sure to wow guests. Tie the knot underneath swaying palm trees on the beachside gazebos, or underneath lavish Swarovski chandeliers in one of the five-star hotel’s extravagant ballrooms, which can host up to 2,000 guests.
Those who want to skip the banquet hall can say “I do” at Fairmont Ajman. Featuring pristine white sands and clear turquoise waters, the beachside resort serves as a postcard-worthy backdrop for tying the knot.
The Ritz-Carlton, Ras Al Khaimah
Set in the midst of the rolling Al Wadi desert, The Ritz-Carlton in Ras Al Khaimah is a truly picturesque wedding destination, with its six indoor and outdoor venues. Those who want to celebrate with family and close friends can opt for something a little more intimate, such as the resort’s falconry deck which can host up to 35 people, while those who prefer a grand celebration can choose to exchange vows in the Khanzama Tent, which accommodates approximately 200 guests.
Le Meridien Al Aqah Beach Resort, Fujairah
Opt for a starlit wedding ceremony at the venue’s private beach, with the stunning Hajar mountains as your backdrop. Lush gardens and manicured lawns are perfect for hosting banquet dinners, while the lavish Hajar Ballroom can host up to 500 guests.