AD Birthday for AB

On our wedding day, I felt sick to my stomach. No, I wasnt nervous about who I was marrying, if it would rain (okay, I was a little worried it would rain), nor was it cold feet: I just really dont enjoy being the sole center of attention. Following the ceremony, I was just fine – it was just the thought of walking down the aisle, all eyes on me that freaked me out. The same anxiety kind of comes with my birthday. Don’t get me wrong, of course I love celebrating and hearing from those I love (this year more than ever!), but the idea of the attention being on me is very daunting! I’m a weirdo, right? Oh well.

Well, in the aforementioned event of our wedding, I definitely made the right choice as my husband was the best ever on my 27th birthday! 🙂 He planned such a fabulous weekend in Abu Dhabi, leaving no stoned unturned – not to mention the hotel was immaculate! We hit the road to Abu Dhabi (“AD”) after the work day was done (an easy hour drive), heading to the St Regis Saadiyat Island Resort (those Starwood points do pay off!) Here are some initial shots:

Would you look at that turquoise water!?

Would you look at that turquoise water!?

View from the balcony in our room

View from the balcony in our room

Saadiyat Island is being tapped as Abu Dhabi’s cultural center, with a Louvre and Guggenheim museum both under construction on the island. There are also commercial and residential buildings in place and under development as well, and I’ve got to say, it is a little paradise in Abu Dhabi!


We arrived at the hotel just in time for cocktail hour, but first dropped by the room to freshen up, and lo and behold, the room’s butler was already on the ball, having decorated the room with balloons, signs, flowers and cupcakes (gluten free, of course!) That husband of mine – such a planner! 🙂

photo 1 photo 2 photo 3 photo 4

The service was beyond fabulous at the hotel – I can’t rave about it enough. That brings us to the food 🙂 We had a celebratory cocktail at the Manhattan Lounge (did you know that the original St Regis hotel in NYC invented the Bloody Mary cocktail? Each St Regis has its own signature Bloody Mary, in fact!) in the hotel before our dinner reservation at Koi (on the island, adjacent to the hotel).



Koi: the food was out of this world. The rolls were delicious, the lobster tacos were unreal delicious, full of lush cuts of lobster – in fact, all the dishes were chock full of the fresh fish, and each bite better than the next. I’ll admit that we were a tad disappointed with the service at Koi; we felt that the food and drinks were a bit rushed – we didnt have time to enjoy even a sip of our drinks before the food was upon us – a bummer as we would have preferred a more leisurely meal whilst on vacation, but c’est la vie! We had a no cell phone rule at dinner, so unfortunately no shots of the food this time around.

DSC_0639 DSC_0645 DSC_0636On Friday, we decided to flashback to our honeymoon and do exactly NOTHING – and we loved it! (In actuality, the Captain of Industry did churn out some emails poolside), but with scenery like this, who can complain?

Where we posted up for most of the day!

Where we posted up for most of the day!

Saturday were our individual personal days – golf for him, spa for moi! The spa was lovely, and Barr deemed the Saadiyat course one of the most beautiful he had ever played.

DSC_0655 DSC_0638 DSC_0652 DSC_0658Not to shabby, eh? Next time, I want to play the course as well! The St Regis at Saadiyat was one of the best hotels I have had the privilege to stay – no stone was left unturned.

All in all, it was such a spectacular birthday week: so chill, beautiful, and lovely – Barr put a lot of thought into the weekend, and I couldnt have felt more blessed by his love or by the influx of emails, Facebook messages, and texts I got over the weekend. It makes me miss everyone even more! 🙂 Here’s to my 27th year – toot toot. Until next time…

13 responses to “AD Birthday for AB

  1. The Editors of Garden Variety

    Beautiful pictures of a remarkable place!

  2. What an incredible bday celebration he planned for you! That water really is turquoise. Every time I read your blog I want to plan when Blake and I will live abroad! Happy birthday! Toot toot haha

    • Thanks, Shannon! Although it sounds like yall’s honeymoon is going to be INSANE – soo jealous! Also, I heard that Blake is ranking and deciding on programs this week – thinking of both of you – good luck 🙂 xoxo

  3. Happy birthday! that hotel looks like such a beautiful spot and what a fabulous husband you got, sweeping you away on such a sweet escape:) I’ve dined at Koi in Bangkok and in Las Vegas, and the food is always great there, so Koi might be just a other reason for me to visit AD (though I also hate, when they rush the food in):)

    • I had been to the one in Los Angeles, and I agree: I think that globally, its SUCH a great restaurant, but maybe it was just an off night with the service? Either way, I definitely recommend making the trip – the food is to die for! Also, LOVE your Vegas recommendations – I’m trying to plan a girl’s trip, and your tips are great!

  4. Fabulous! And I’m loving that you had personal days too! That is such a good idea- now if only I could swing that on our family trips! x

  5. Preach girl, I feel the SAME WAY about my birthday (and our wedding day/bridal showers). Good to know I’m in good company-and I’m all about going away on birthdays too 🙂 So glad your birthday was amazing-well done JBB!

  6. Looks unreal! Happy Birthday, Abby!!!

  7. Starwood Points are the best!!! Happy Birthday – looks like it was an amazing time 🙂