Category Archives: Palm Jumeirah

Ronda Locatelli – One of the best Italian Restaurant in Dubai

I’ve been several times to Ronda Locatelli, an Italian restaurant chain founded the 14th February 2002 in Seymour Street in London by Giorgio Locatelli and soon after awarded with one Michelin Star which has been retained every year since. After the success obtained in the UK, luckily enough for us living in Dubai, Mr. Locatelli decided to open a similar restaurant in the luxurious Atlantis the Palm hotel.

The restaurant ambiance is great, with a big pizza oven at the center of the restaurant and dimmed lights to create the perfect dining atmosphere.

Ronda Locatelli Dubai

A view of Ronda Locatelli taken from TimeOut Duba

At Ronda Locatelli the staff is very well trained and from the moment to step into the restaurant until you leave satisfied with the delicacies provided by the chef, it is a continuous flow of smiles and politeness that increase the enjoyment of the dinner.

I usually visit Ronda Locatelli for the excellent pizza, my favorite is the speck, Gorgonzola and porcini mushrooms one but this time the chef caught my attention with a very particular set menu exploring the culinary traditions of the Italian Region Veneto.

Our waiter was very nice and able to satisfy our requests. The special menu consisted in a 4 courses: 1 of two starter options (polenta with stracchino cheese or sardines Venetian style); 1 of two pasta/soup options (beetroot ravioli or spelt soup); 1 of two main course options (baccala’ that is cod fish the Vicenza’s way or rabbit) and 1 desert. We asked for two set menus and told the waiter to bring us both options where available so to taste the entire menu. He was so proactive that he managed to serve the dishes already split in two for maximum comfort.

The starters very really good even though simple as the Italian cuisine dictates. The sardines with onions and the crunchy fried polenta with stracchino cheese were delicate and yummi.

Starters at Ronda Locatelli

On the left the cold sardines with onions; on the right the grilled polenta with stracchino cheese and onions.

The spelt soup was enriched by some pumpkin made gnocchi that well combined with the delicate taste of the spelt. The beetroot ravioli were delicious. I wish I could have an additional portion or may be two.

Soup and Ravioli at Ronda Locatelli

Left: beetroot ravioli; Right: spelt soup with pumpkin gnocchi and crunchy Parmesan

The main course was superlative. Cod fish with tomato sauce and rabbit are two of the main traditional dishes in Liguria, the region where I come from. It was really enjoyable to try them in this different fashion.

Main Course at Ronda Locatelli

The cod fish in tomato sauce and olives was really yummy

The dessert is very particular. As admitted by the chef himself, not everybody likes it but it is the traditional recipe as every grandma in Veneto would do.

Dessert at Ronda Locatelli

At the end of the meal, chef Salvo visited our table and with a bright smile he genuinely asked an opinion on the menu and the food provided. He informed us that he is going to explore the traditional delicacies of each and every Italian region in an attempt to make the menu more interesting and challenging also for the team in the kitchen.

At the moment of the bill we didn’t have any bad surprise since the prices are in line with the competitors and met our expectations considering the quality and quantity of the food.

To be honest, 195 AED for the amazing menu offered is a really convenient bargain. 

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Concert Review: Kings of Leon @ Atlantis the Palm – Dubai

If there is one thing that is not missing in Dubai, it is certainly the organization of major events such as the F1 race, the horse races, GITEX and other dedicated shows and exhibitions.

Among them, we have a constant presence of concerts. I personally enjoyed Madonna, Kaylee Minogue, Eminem, The Empire of the Sun, Clean Bandits, Rudimental, Sting, Lindsey Sterling and many others. Sometimes there were issues with the traffic and the organization of the events, but things are constantly improving.

One of the concert I attended in the past year is the Kings of Leon’s one, which took place the 28th May 2014. I have to admit that at that time I had no idea of who the Kings of Leon were, even though I later realized that I knew some of their songs, especially the famous “Sex on Fire” so popular in many pubs. Even though I was not very excited about it, I thought better to buy the tickets for me and my partner and to listen to some songs on Youtube before the performance. The venue of the concert was Atlantis the Palm, one of the best hotels in Dubai that has a private beach where concerts and events are usually organized.

We left home early in order to avoid the traffic but we soon realized that, unfortunately, other hundreds or maybe thousands people thought exactly the same and we ended up in a never-seen-before traffic jam.  The problem in Palm Jumeirah is that there is only one access road and everybody (taxis, buses, cars etc) shall pass from this unique way to reach the concert area.

Atlantis tried once, during the last NYE, to organize buses and warmly invited people to use them instead of the personal cars in order to ease the viability. Unfortunately, many buses remained trapped in the traffic jam outside the palm for many hours, preventing people to reach the destination in time to see the World Record fireworks displayed. We spent almost 1 hour and a half travelling at an average speed of 7 km/h, reaching the venue just in time to catch the concert from the beginning.

The concert was really nice and enjoyable, even though the band mostly played songs from their (at the time) new album, that weren’t very popular among the crowd. The adrenaline level spiked when the band started performing their best songs “Sex on Fire” and “Use Somebody”. The band performance was great and I dare-say the songs resulted to be nicer and with more energy live than the studio version played in many clubs.

Restaurant Review: Ronda Locatelli – Atlantis the Palm – Dubai

Last visited in June 2015

Location: Atlantis the Palm – Palm Jumeirah

Style: Italian

Last week it was our anniversary and we decided to celebrate with a pizza in Ronda Locatelli. I have been there already several times in the past, but the last time was almost one year ago. I have to admit that the service, which was already very good, has improved significantly and now is excellent.  The crew was really attentive and polite, prepared about the menu and ingredients used and proactive. We wanted something easy to eat; hence we opted for a pizza.

I chose Gorgonzola, Speck and Porcini mushroom pizza while my partner wanted her favourite: Capricciosa (the one with almost everything on top). As usual, she had to go to the wash-room few seconds before our meal was ready. Our waiter was so polite to ask me if I wanted to wait my partner to be back before the pizza was served. I have appreciated it, because in this way the pizza remained hot and I was not tempted to eat it while waiting.

As soon as my partner returned, the pizzas were delivered and we enjoyed them greatly. My pizza was extraordinary good, with crispy dough and the topping made with very high quality ingredients.

Pizza is the cheapest option present in the menu, costing just little more that the appetizers. The mains are significantly more expensive with prices suitable to a fine dining venue, and Ronda is quite so.

Definitely one of the best pizza in town.

Skydiving over Palm Jumeirah

Skydiving over Palm Jumairah in Dubai

For those who do not know, I worked and lived in Dubai for almost 4 years (from 2009 to 2013), enjoying the beautiful Middle Eastern city opportunities and attractions. Unfortunately, after such a formative and intense period of my life I decided to change company and consequently city. I did almost everything in Dubai such as attending concerts, going to disco, events, inaugurations, safaris, parks, restaurants and the like, with great satisfaction and amusement.

When I finally decided to say good bye to Dubai, I prepared a final to do list of things I would have never done in a ‘normal time’ and normal conditions. Thanks to my partner, who was willing to do it as well but not alone, I found some mysterious mental energy to afford the great challenge: jump from a plane at 4,000 meters

SkydiveDubai Plane by AndreaDetto

Skydive Dubai Plane that takes jumper above the clouds.

.Well, honestly speaking, I had such a mix of adrenaline and terror in my blood stream that I barely realized that I was supposed to jump from a plane. When we arrived at the Skydiving center, I was like narcotised, not completely understanding what I had around and what I was going to do. We were asked to read and sign many papers that basically were saying that we were conscious of the fact that many things could have gone wrong and confirming that we renounced to file any lawsuit for any reason whatsoever including human mistake and equipment failure.

At that point I started realizing the potential risks that the jump had and started feeling the fear growing up . . . luckily for me, the instructor they assigned to me was Italian and talking in my own language helped me a lot in control the emotions.

After a quick safety induction wherein the instructor explained me what to do and when do it in order to have a safe experience, we moved to the runaway where the little plane was waiting for us. The very moment I stepped inside the plane, I eventually realized what I was going to do and started panicking.

1, 2, . . . Juuump! by AndreaDetto

1, 2, . . . Juuump!

My instructor showed me the altimeter that was indicating 4000 meters and then he said: “ok now, get ready for the launch because we are the second in line. When you see the guy in front of you jump, please move forward and stay in front of the open door, but do not jump.” . . . well the door opened and I saw this guy with his instructor tied on the back approaching it and . . . .woooosh . . . in less than one second they disappeared. . . . mamma mia . . . the fear was growing and it reached the maximum level when I put my head out of the plane and stared at the world under myself . . . panic . . . I was short breathing . . . and then I heard “1 . . . 2 . . . . woooosh”. . . . and I was in free fall . . . . what a strange sensation . . .rotating in the air, feeling weightless  . . . . then a new order come: “open your arms like you are flying” . . .  I was literally flying in the sky over Palm Jumairah that was quickly approaching . . .  pure adrenaline . . . “ready for the parachute?” . . .  whoooooosh . . . .  and the parachute was swung open with that sensation of being pulled from the sky towards the space . . . . And then flying easily over Dubai Marina, maneuvering the parachute until a perfectly safe landing in the dedicated area. . . .

Skydiving over Palm Jumeirah

Flying over Palm Jumeirah was something I won’t forget

Definitely one of the best and most exciting experience in my life.

Everything went smoothly, no problem whatsoever. The staff, instructors, pilots and cameramen were very professionals and meticulous in the safety check of the equipment and this reassured me a lot even though I was anyway deadly scared when I was asked to jump 😉

Once landed, a beautiful surprise come. In the price was included a video of the jump and a series of photos I personally thought to be some low level souvenir. On the contrary, the video is amazing (here) as well as the photos, some of which I posted here.