April 30, 2007

Durrah Al Arrus - A Refreshing Getaway

One of the things I dislike here in Saudi is the ruling for women to wear Abaya -a long black gown worn over your dress. But, there are some public places that allow women not to wear one, that is if you can afford it. It's the private beaches of Jeddah.

Durrah Al Arrus - the resort that we visited last weekend - has this feature too. It's an integrated tourist village up north of Jeddah and we can spend one day at the beach through the Beach Resort Hotel for 50SAR/person/day or stay at the hotel.

The beach was nice with blue water and sandy beach and the resort hotel itself has a gorgeous park and swimming pool. Overall it's fantastic. But be discreet when taking pictures, it's actually not allowed to do in the beach and pool.

Report Card
(Durrah Beach Resort Hotel)

Main Attraction:
- The Beach: pure sandy beach, with a view of the North Jeddah Bay. Just like being in the Cote d'Azur. Superb!
- The Marina to stroll along: Not as beautiful as in Port el Kantoui (Tunis), but it is nice to walk at night and see the boats.
- Especially for me: freedom to take off the Abaya and walking outside the flat

Accomodation:
Garden View: the cheapest room (around 500SAR/night excl. breakfast).
We had a prepaid package deal of 3,499SAR, to spend 8 nights at weekend and 4 at weekdays inclusive breakfast for 2, plus 2 complimentary nights during Ramadhan
- Enough room for a small family with 1 child
- The floor is made of tile. Handy for the cleaning service, but messy for the guest
- The hotel is not rated, but from the room my rating is between 2-3 stars (European std)

Facilities:
- Full equipped gym, with sauna, mini olympic swimming pool, tennis court and squash. Ladies time 8AM-4PM, Gentlemen 5PM-9PM
-Fun Swimming pool for children and adults
- Rental of boat, jetskis and caddy car

Dining:
- The hotel has 3 dining room.
- Breakfast has broad choices from Arabic breakfast to Continental
- Other restaurants and Cafes are available in the Marina
- The prices is fair. Not too expensive for a hotel.

Transportation:
By car, it was around 50 minutes from the City Center of Jeddah

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