I travelled in January and stayed in the One Bedroom Garden View Pool Villa, which starts from £514 BB. Other fabulous rooms start from £291.
P.C. 214 Al Mansurah Street
T: +968 23 228222
Al Baleed Resort Salalah by Anantara Overview
A true retreat in contrast say to the buzzing capital of Muscat, the welcome drink of rose water, ginger and frankincense set the scene for the fragrant and relaxing stay ahead.
Proud of their frankincense heritage you’ll get the full shebang if you book in for a restoring frankincense spa ritual, followed by a hammam and a tray of dates, frankincense nuggets to chew on and a sip of ginger tea whilst you sink back with a lavender pillow wrapping warmth around your neck — true luxury.
The beach offers the chance to do as locals do, swimming in beautiful nature whilst the restaurants serve local ingredients such as Salalah coconut water. Expect towels twisted into shapes such as elephants waiting on your bed and warm service from the staff.
Be sure to book a frankincense tour through the hotel to discover the fascinating connection as well as immerse in local life, my guide Hasan even stopped by his family home to show me a typical Omani reception room; Omani coffee included!
Décor and vibe
There’s an emphasize on bringing the outside in, celebrating the close proximity of the beach from open plan breakfast dining looking out to the sea, to the palm fringed pool, to cabanas on the sand beckoning you to lay down listening to the waves lapping.
Bright white walls with warm natural wooden furniture create a calm environment, marble walls and furnishings add glamour. Dining areas combine comfortable sofa seating in colourful fabrics juxtaposed with traditional, more formal dining chairs.
Services and facilities
- Room service
- Fitness centre
- Steam room
- Tennis court
Rooms (and suites)
The accommodation, all flooded with natural light, range from smart deluxe rooms boasting balconies with enviable views, to sea view deluxe rooms, with just that; sublime seaside vistas.
A junior suite offers the privacy of your own courtyard and typical local majlis upholstered seating, through to lagoon, beach or garden view villas with pools, which are well worth the investment: to plunge in one’s own pool, with a view of the surrounding area, takes some beating.
Thoughtful touches include a sketch pad, pack of playing cards, delicious tea selection, frisbees to play with and even an inflatable animal in the pool to float along with. The marble-clad bathrooms are spacious, with a free-standing bath and even bunny shaped face towels, shaped by a creative member of turndown service.
Food and drink
Sakalan offers international dishes, buffet style, whilst Al Mina is more Mediterranean in its vibe. Mekong serves an array of the very best Asian cuisine around: I happened to be there for a ‘Far East Night’, so hopped from station to station with food ranging from the perfect pad thai — the chef who prepared it was also Thai — so authentic to a mean mee goreng.
The Asian dessert table was bursting was colour and flavour, all set to the backdrop of live singing. I really loved the traditional Omani dishes at breakfast which included dango – a chickpea stew; Omani daal bataleet – a sumptuous sweet vermicelli dish — and typical lola Omani breads. Freshly squeezed orange juice and coconut water are aplenty.
For more information and bookings, visit the hotel website: anantara.com/en/al-baleed-salalah.