Ramadan 2023: Best Ways to Celebrate in Dubai

Written by Silvana Fitzpatrick

Ramadan is the most sacred month in the Islamic calendar and is highly anticipated by millions of Muslims around the world. The sighting of the New Crescent Moon marks the beginning of this holy month of piety and self-reflection. During Ramadan, Muslims observe a month-long fast, refraining from food and drink from sunrise to sunset.

This year, based on the moon sighting, Ramadan starts tomorrow, March 23 and lasts for 30 days until the start of the Eid al-Fitr feast on April 21 or 22.

Dubai is a melting pot of cultures, and during the holy month of Ramadan, this diversity shines even brighter. The city comes together to celebrate this sacred event, with people of all faiths and nationalities participating in the festivities. From the nightly iftar buffets to the special events and activities, Ramadan in Dubai is a unique and unforgettable experience. The city's mosques welcome all visitors to participate in the prayers, and the streets come alive with the spirit of the holy month. This is a time when people put aside their differences and unite in the shared values of kindness, generosity, and spirituality.

Ramadan 2023 in Dubai

A Time for Caring and Sharing

Ramadan is a time for Muslims to reflect on their spiritual journey, to renew their faith and devotion. Fasting during Ramadan is considered an act of worship and a way to show gratitude for all the blessings in life. This month is also an opportunity to strengthen family and community bonds, as Muslims come together for communal prayers and shared meals.

The spirit of giving and charitable works is also emphasised during Ramadan, with individuals and organisations helping those in need through acts of kindness and generosity.

In Dubai, the month of Ramadan is celebrated by Muslims and non-Muslims, with the city's top Iftars being a highlight for all. Ramadan brings together people of all faiths to celebrate the spirit of compassion, generosity, and unity.

Finest Iftar Venues in Dubai this Ramadan

This Ramadan, Iftars in Dubai are taking on a new meaning and level of sophistication. Whether you’re looking for world-class contemporary restaurants, fine Middle Eastern fare at The Address Hotels, or more traditional venues and majlises to gather – Dubai has it all.

We have compiled a short list of top venues to consider for unmissable Iftars this month, offering everything from fusion plates to private dining experiences.

Tasca, Mandarin Oriental Jumeirah

Tasca Mandarin Oriental Iftar

Tasca, a fine-dining restaurant located on Jumeirah Beach Road, offers an unforgettable culinary experience for lovers of Portuguese cuisine. The restaurant, situated in the Mandarin Oriental Jumeirah, has earned a prestigious Michelin star for its exceptional dishes and impeccable service.

One of the most exciting experiences at Tasca is the family-friendly Portuguese-style Iftar. The four-course set menu showcases the best of chef José Avillez’s signature creations, featuring Lupini Beans Hummus, Black Eyed Pea Salad & Tuna, Tender Lamb, and Chicken Piri-Piri. The Ramadan juices and signature mocktails add a refreshing touch to the dining experience.

Tasca's stunning location offers breathtaking views of the Arabian Gulf, making it the perfect spot to enjoy a sumptuous meal with friends and family. The complete à la carte menu is also available for those who want to explore more of the restaurant's extensive offerings.

Dubai Opera, Downtown Dubai

Dubai Opera Iftar

Dubai Opera is offering a unique Iftar experience this year. From 23 March to 19 April 2023, visitors can break their fast with a delectable spread of authentic Emirati cuisine and enjoy live music performances by talented musicians playing classical Arabic melodies. The stunning surroundings of the Dubai Opera will provide the perfect backdrop for this unforgettable Ramadan experience.

The Iftar buffet curated by the chefs at The Address Sky View will feature international and Arabic dishes, including carving stations, a variety of sweets and desserts, and refreshing Ramadan juices. The main course options include Nile perch charmoula, mixed capsicum and aubergine moussaka, butter chicken, bamya bil laham (okra with lamb and tomato sauce), Arabic beef galayet bandora, vegetable tagine with couscous, shish taouk, and lamb kofta mandi rice. But that's not all – there's also an Ouzi Station serving roasted whole baby lamb ouzi with traditional oriental rice and yoghurt with cucumber and mint.

The Dubai Opera Iftar experience promises to be a memorable blend of cultural and culinary delights. It's the perfect opportunity to celebrate the spirit of Ramadan with friends and family while enjoying the enchanting ambiance and Downtown views in one of Dubai's most iconic venues.

Mina’s Kitchen The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi

Mina's Kitchen Iftar

Mina's Kitchen at The Westin Mina Seyahi is a celebration of family tradition. This cosy all-day dining restaurant is the perfect place to gather with loved ones during Ramadan and indulge in a variety of mouth-watering dishes. From hot and cold mezze to shawarma and lamb tagine, there's something for everyone at Mina's Kitchen. The dedicated Indian and Asian corner is a must-visit for those craving Asian delights. The restaurant's bright and contemporary décor sets the perfect ambiance for an Iftar experience and to add to the atmosphere, an oud player fills the air with beautiful melodies. It comes as no surprise that Mina's Kitchen is considered one of the best places to enjoy Iftar in Dubai this year.

The Artisan, Waldorf Astoria DIFC

The Artisan Iftar

The Artisan at Waldorf Astoria in Za'abeel – DIFC will treat you to an Iftar meal like no other. With most popular dishes such as Carpaccio di Barbabietola, you will be savouring a perfect blend of flavours and textures dripping from the sweet and sour beetroot carpaccio. The caramelised walnuts, ricotta, green apple, and rocket salad add an extra crunch and refreshing taste to the dish. The Artisan's signature dessert, Pannacotta Ai Datteri, is a homemade dates pannacotta that comes with caramelised hazelnut and orange zest. The creamy and smooth texture of the pannacotta, coupled with the sweetness of dates, provides the perfect ending to this special Iftar, which can only be matched by the luxurious ambiance of The Artisan venue.

Le Jardin, Raffles The Palm

Le Jardin Iftar

This magnificent venue offers dining in a shimmering space reminiscent of French palaces, complete with an alfresco terrace overlooking gardens in full bloom. It is indeed the perfect place to enjoy a regal ambiance and indulge in an iftar meal.

The beautiful restaurant, nestled in Raffles The Palm, offers an impressive selection of hot and cold mezzeh, soups, salads, and cheeses. Their live cooking stations serve a variety of dishes, such as Arabic Mixed Grill, Samak Chermoula, Whole Lamb Ouzi, and Fresh Falafel, all perfectly prepared to delight your taste buds. Traditional main courses like Lamb Makanek, Vegetable Tagine, Sharhat Mutafae, and Dajaj Bil Batata are beautifully presented, while classic Ramadan desserts like Um Ali, Cheese Kunafa, and Walnut Baklava add a sweet touch to your experience.

No matter what you plan this month for your traditional Suhoor or Iftar gatherings, the spirit of the centuries-old Ramadan tradition remains same as always, a time to be spent with your loved ones.