Calabar – The Address in down town Dubai
The Calabar at The Address, Dubai Mall is a bar with one of the best locations in town.
Just across, the majestic Burj Khalifa, and the giant Dubai Mall, the Calabar has many advantages as well as disadvantage towards other bars around.
It is not as big in size, as inside one can only find a few options to sit, such as high chairs around the entire bar and a few cocktail tables here and there. However the bar is famous for it’s outside area. The happening therefore is outside, just above the waters of Dubai’s one and only fountain.
But let me lead you through the entire Calabar experience first before we reach the impressive water show.
One needs to enter the bar by walking through the confusing lobby labyrinth of The Address Hotel. ‘Many ways lead to Rome’, the same applies for a cocktail or nibbles on one of Dubai’s most exquisite bars.
Just after the Chinese fine dining restaurant, there is a huge and heavy door at the end of the corridor which leads to the bar.
A hostess, nicely dressed and with a friendly smile, opens the doors for you, if you are above 21 years of age and dressed just as elegant as she is herself.
As said the actual bar itself is not huge in terms of seating capacity, but the ceilings are high and the choice of liquor placed around the bar is impressive. Talking of the famous view, however, we recommend to sit outside.
Only, if you have a reservation. Showing up at the bar, and looking for a table outside otherwise, could lead into a mission impossible.
One of their signature drinks is a classic Mojito, as we all know it.
The drink is priced accurately and refreshing, the service however is slow and not as friendly as one would expect.
Waiting for a drink in average takes 15 – 20 minutes and not only once we have observed other tables around us ordering more than a drink at the time, while marking service as slow.
Changing ashtrays is a very occasional thing to happen at the bar, but then again, one thing goes with another, as the bar is always busy, they must do something right as well.
And yes they do, their assorted sushi and sashimi platter is quite expensive for only a few pieces of fish, but the fish is fresh, the decoration gorgeous and the combination of tuna, wasabi, soy sauce and the giant water fountain raising up from the grounds of Dubai Malls biggest artificial lake, is an explosion. An explosion of modern cuisine and modern architecture.
The vibes of old school house music and funky chill out, just adds an enormous advantage to the place as well as the cozy bean bags, invite guests to stay at least for another drink.
All in all I would recommend the bar, at lest from a tourist point of view, and also for us who live in Dubai for a long time. It is nice from time to time to combine a spectacle of water fountains with a relaxed drink overlooking the Mall, Souk Al Bahar and the stunning Burj Khalifa.
The Bad: Service seems to be very slow, and not too attentive as one would expect, which is a shame for such a great place.
The Good: Service is the smallest issue, in terms of what a business can improve or work on, as the only thing needed is a lot of training. The rest of the bar, ‘fixed assets’, as accountants would call it, such as interior and location as well as the menu, value for money and the atmosphere, well those advantages are priceless, and definitely a big plus for the Calabar.
We will still be back, for the sushi, the drinks and the cool vibes at this wonderful location.