Trader Vic’s Mai Tai Lounge
There’s no point even pretending that this Polynesian-themed joint is classy, but boy is it fun. Even during the week, the noise from the assembled happy ex-pats can be deafening, and that’s before you add the live Cuban band into the cacophony. Housed in a strange mini mall – you have to go up an escalator, then walk past a Wagamama and a fur coat shop (yes, apparently even people who live in 50 degree heat covet vicuna) – it’s not the most salubrious of locations, but once inside the Tiki tat will win you over. The ceilings are high, the bars clad with bamboo, and the wicker chairs have a 70s holiday resort vibe – plonk yourself down on one, order a goldfish bowl-sized cocktail (some of which come with decidedly illegal-in-Dubai half-naked plastic dolls swimming in them) and some of the excellent Asian-influenced bar snacks.