Dubai is an incredible city unlike any other in the world. Situated along the coast of the Persian Gulf, Dubai is known for its trendy, upscale shopping, manmade islands, and the tallest building on Earth: the Burj Khalifa. While Dubai is not the capital of the United Arab Emirates (that would be Abu Dhabi) it does boast the largest population in the UAE and one could easily mistake it for a capital city.

The essence of travel to and around the Arabian Peninsula has drastically evolved over the past several years, with the long-awaited opening of Saudi Arabia to global tourists happening fairly recently. On the other hand, the United Arab Emirates has been a major global center for a while, largely due to the discovery of oil. As a modern hub for finance, trade, education, and luxury travel, Dubai is an excellent place to visit.

Note that Dubai is located between the sea and the desert, and its climate is extremely warm and dry. If you aren’t used to such an arid climate, it’s probably best to visit between December and March; but if temperatures exceeding a dry 100℉ sound like the dream to you, visit any time of year!

For those of you who are ready to hit the City of Gold, here are a few points properties that we think you should check out for your next trip to Dubai.

Marriott

La Ville Hotel & Suites City Walk, Dubai, Autograph Collection

If you’re looking for 5-star comfort within the City Walk shopping mall complex, book in with La Ville Hotel & Suites City Walk, Dubai. This property is excellent for those who are in Dubai on business, but it is also suitable for anyone looking to stay near downtown Dubai and the business districts.

La Ville Suite Living Area

La Ville Hotel & Suites City Walk, Dubai (Image Courtesy from Marriott)

The City Walk complex is located just a few blocks from the Burj Khalifa and it’s full of shops, restaurants, cafes, and financial offices. Back at the hotel, be sure to take advantage of the rooftop infinity pool and bar, cozy and modern amenities, and the myriad of on-site dining options that serve up fresh ingredients every day.

A night at this Category 6 property is available from 40,000 Marriott Rewards points.

W Dubai – The Palm

Dubai is split up into a couple of different areas that are most frequented by visitors; most folks like to stay either closer to downtown for the shopping and business dealings, or in a manmade peninsula called The Palm Jumeirah.

“The Palm,” as it’s called, is where you’ll find more upscale shopping and dining, beautiful resorts, and family-friendly activities catered to beachgoers and vacationers. Among these resorts is the W Dubai – The Palm, a property full of vibrant, provocative design elements and world-class dining concepts. This hotel’s architecture is reminiscent of a cruise ship and includes multi-level pool systems and its own beachfront with views towards the fronds of The Palm.

A night at this Category 7 property is available from 50,000 Marriott Rewards points.

W Dubai – The Palm King Room

W Dubai – The Palm (Image Courtesy from Marriott)

Cards to Help You Earn Marriott Points

Marriott Bonvoy Boundless® Credit Card

One of the quickest ways to earn Marriott points is to open a line of credit with the Marriott Bonvoy Boundless credit card from Chase. Not only do cardholders have the opportunity to earn more Bonus Points on everyday spending, but they also earn automatic Silver Elite status simply by being cardholders. Cardholders earn 6X points per $1USD spent on purchases at Marriott Properties and 2X points per $1USD spent on all other purchases.

With all of these benefits, this card is well worth the $95 annual fee; however, there is another way to skip the annual fee.

Marriott Bonvoy Bold® Credit Card

If you want extra benefits without the annual fee, apply for the Marriott Bonvoy Bold credit card from Chase. You’ll still have access to complimentary Silver Elite Status and earn 3X points per $1USD spent on purchases at Marriott properties. You’ll also earn 2X points per $1USD spent on travel purchases and 1X points per $1USD on all other purchases.

If you want a quick path to Silver Elite and a decent earning potential without committing to an annual fee, the Marriott Bonvoy Bold could be the right pick for you.

Hilton

Conrad Dubai

As one of three luxury Hilton brands, you generally can’t go wrong with a Conrad property. The Conrad Dubai is certainly no exception with its prime location near the Dubai World Trade Centre, placing guests just steps away from the UAE’s leading event and exhibition venue.

Conrad Dubai

Conrad Dubai (Image Courtesy from Hilton)

For guests who want to stay near the action but don’t want to miss out on a good beach day, this property offers a free shuttle bus to La Mer beach. The hotel is also very well connected to the rest of the city via metro for those who would like to visit the Burj Khalifa and the Dubai Frame. If you’d like to relax away from the buzzing outside, be sure to take refuge in the on-site pool, pleasantly surrounded by lush greenery.

A night at this luxury property is available from just 33,000 Hilton HHonors points.

Cards to Help You Earn Hilton Points

Hilton has a long-standing partnership with American Express and offers four different co-branded cards: three personal cards and one business card. Here, we’ll mention the perks of our favorite personal card as well as the business card.

The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card

Perfect for business owners on the go, The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card is a card with decent earning potential and plenty of travel benefits. While it comes with a $95 annual fee (see Rates and Fees), cardholders earn 12X Bonus Points per $1USD spent on Hilton purchases, 6X Bonus Points per $1USD on flights booked directly with airlines or through Amex Travel, and on car rentals booked directly through select car rental agencies, and 3X Bonus Points per $1USD spent on all other purchases.

In addition, this card is an excellent way to jump straight to Gold Status; a $95 annual fee is a pretty small price to pay considering that benefit. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to upgrade to Diamond Status depending on how much you’re planning on using the card, which is a definite bonus.

Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

The Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card is our favorite credit card in the collection, and it comes with a hefty $450 annual fee (see Rates and Fees).

At first glance, it might not seem worth it to splurge on a high-fee card when the Bonus Points earning potential is only marginally better than the other three cards in the collection. However, when weighing the annual fee against the additional benefits, it might be a good deal if you’re looking to skyrocket your status.

Cardholders earn 14X Bonus Points per $1USD spent on Hilton purchases, 7X Bonus Points per $1USD spent on purchases at US restaurants, flights booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel, and cars booked directly through select car rental agencies, and 3X Bonus Points per $1USD spent on all other eligible purchases. Note that the value of the accompanying travel benefits surpasses the annual fee, so as long as you’re planning on using the benefits, this card is well worth it.

IHG

Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown

No stranger to pops of color and lively design, the Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown is a trendy and comfortable pick. This property is sandwiched between Downtown Dubai and the Dubai Design District (a.k.a. “d3”); the former hosting the Burj Khalifa and the latter boasting a global presence in the world of fashion and design.

Guests at this hotel are never far from artisan coffee; whether you venture outside to any of the nearby boutique cafes or stay on-site for dinner, the Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown prides itself on offering the best-brewed beans around. When you’re ready to chill, pop up to the pool deck and relax at the on-site shisha lounge while taking in the stunning Dubai skyline around you.

A night at this property is available from just 17,000 IHG Rewards points.

Hotel Indigo Downtown Standard Twin Room

Hotel Indigo Dubai Downtown (Image Courtesy from IHG)

Cards to Help You Earn IHG Points

IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card

The IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card from Chase is the premium card in the IHG collection.

This card comes with an $89 annual fee, but it includes automatic Platinum Elite Member status and up to 25X points per $1USD spent at IHG properties, which include existing reward benefits from your status.

IHG Rewards Club Traveler Credit Card

Of course, the Premier level card doesn’t suit everyone. If you are an IHG Rewards member interested in opening an IHG line of credit but don’t want to bother with any annual fees, then signing up for the IHG Rewards Club Traveler Credit Card from Chase could be a better move.

Currently, this no-annual-fee card is offering a 60,000 Bonus Point sign-up bonus after spending $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from the account opening. This card does come with the opportunity to bump up to Gold Elite, which is a nice perk for members with Club Member status. Additionally, you can earn up to 15X points per USD spent at IHG properties worldwide when combined with your status.

Hyatt

Andaz Dubai The Palm

The Palm is broken up into three different parts: the trunk, the fronds, and the outer ring. While the W Dubai is located on the outer ring, the Andaz Dubai The Palm is located squarely on the trunk.

This hotel caters to beachgoers with 300 meters of dedicated beachfront, but it also lends easy access to the many upscale shopping opportunities at Nakheel Mall and the Golden Mile Galleria. For guests who prefer to be outdoors, the Andaz Dubai also has an infinity pool as well as an adults-only pool. Even though there is a wealth of off-site restaurants to choose from, don’t miss a taste of the on-site local cuisine at the hotel.

A night at this 5-star hotel is available from 20,000 World of Hyatt points.

Andaz Dubai The Palm Royal Suite

Andaz Dubai The Palm (Image Courtesy from Hyatt)

Cards to Help You Earn World of Hyatt Points

If you’re looking to maximize your earning potential with World of Hyatt, the best way to do that is by – you guessed it – opening up a line of credit. Currently, The World of Hyatt Credit Card is offering a sign-up bonus of up to 60,000 Bonus points, equivalent to 12 free nights at a Category 1 property.

Cardholders earn 9X Total Points per $1USD spent at Hyatt properties, 2X Bonus Points on transportation, restaurants, flights purchased directly through the airline, and fitness club memberships, and 1X Bonus Points per $1USD spent on all other purchases.

Chase Travel Portal

The above properties are wonderful options for Dubai, but they aren’t so exciting if you haven’t stocked up on a bunch of points in exactly the right currency. If you don’t have a stash of brand-specific points lying around, there is another option.

Many credit cards offer their own rewards programs that include the opportunity to redeem points on travel. If you’ve been stockpiling credit card rewards instead of brand-specific hotel rewards, a trip to Dubai could be a great way to redeem them.

For example, you could use your stash of Chase Ultimate Rewards Points to book your hotel. When Chase points are redeemed on travel purchases through the Ultimate Rewards Portal, they are worth 50% more than other select categories. That bonus is a great incentive to use them on a trip to Dubai! Here is one special property in Dubai that you can book through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.

LUX The Ocean Pearl Villa

While one can certainly book a huge variety of hotels through the Ultimate Rewards portal, it is often possible to book private vacation rentals as well. For Dubai, LUX Holiday Home properties are easily bookable with your Ultimate Rewards points.

One example of a LUX private rental is The Ocean Pearl Villa, a four-bedroom home located in a gated community on Frond E of The Palm. This extravagant villa features a patch of private beach, gorgeous living and dining spaces, a balcony, a pool, a hot tub, and a sauna. If you’re looking to splurge on a private getaway for your family or a group of friends, this or one of the many other LUX vacation rentals would be a great use of your Ultimate Rewards points.

This private holiday home is available from 79,400 Ultimate Rewards points per night.

The Ocean Pearl Villa

LUX The Ocean Pearl Villa (Image Courtesy from LUX Holiday Home)

Cards to Help You Earn Ultimate Rewards Points

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

A consistent favorite of the Chase collection is the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, offering unparalleled opportunities to earn Ultimate Rewards points and benefit from travel perks. Its hefty $550 annual fee is offset by an annual $300 travel credit, plus built-in insurance and protections for when you’re on the go.

Currently, new cardholders can earn a 60,000 point sign-up bonus after spending $4,000 within the first three months of opening the account — that’s a bonus of $900 if redeemed through the Travel Portal!

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

If a $450 annual fee just doesn’t sound like a good time, apply for the Chase Sapphire Preferred instead. With a $95 annual fee and an even more impressive 100,000 point sign-up bonus offer, this card is ideal for a first-time Chase Sapphire applicant.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re visiting Dubai for business or pleasure, there is no shortage of things to do in town. Dubai is not only a hub for business but also for design, art, innovation, technology, and luxury coastal tourism, and it’s perfect to receive visitors from all around the world. If you have a stash of points waiting to be redeemed, Dubai has many exciting properties that are waiting for you!