Glamorous Living - A Desert Vacation

I've been off the grid the past couple of weeks traveling to Muscat in Oman for a dear friend's birthday celebration.  There were six birthday destinations in all and I decided on Muscat because that's where the actual birthday was and having never been to that part of the world I was dying to check it out.  

Although Muscat, Oman’s capital is a mere one-hour plane ride from Dubai, on the way there from JFK I had the joy of a 10-hour layover in Dubai. Luckily I traveled in business and found the Emirates lounge positively relaxing, though a tad too long.

We stayed at the exquisite Chedi Hotel in 5-star luxury. The hotel's architecture combines classic Moorish details such as dark wood paneling, intricate latticework and ornate hand-crafted decorative tiles in a contemporary setting of white-washed plaster walls and cathedral high ceilings, with added sparkle from custom Swarovski crystal  chandeliers.

What I found most captivating however was the subtly intoxicating fragrance that wafted through the corridors and lobbies. Also discovered the best hot stone massage I've ever had in the spa. 

So, what to pack for a desert vacation? With temps reaching 120 degrees during the day and dipping to a mere 85 at night, linen, cotton and loose fitting is definitely the way to go.  It goes without saying that modest dressing is recommended, making chic kaftans perfect for day and evening.

With such a forgiving dress code, I managed to take one outfit from day to dinner.  It actually wasn't intentional - I just didn't have time to change!

We spent an unforgettable evening in the desert at Desert Nights Camp in cozy adobe-like tented roof 1 bedroom apartments dotted around the property.  Before dinner guides shuttled everyone into Landcruisers and took us on a somewhat perilous expedition through the sand dunes to view the sunset.  It was quite an astonishing sight of steep hills and deep valleys of sand as far as the eye could see with not a bird or plant on the landscape. Then as the sun went down the wind sped up and suddenly we found ourselves in the swirl of a mini sandstorm and barely able to see ahead.

For a little shopping therapy we visited a souk in the old port where everything was grouped in separate areas: one section for spices, olives, nuts and dried fruit, one for pottery and fabric, one for livestock, etc.  

Last, but not least we discovered Wadi Tiwi natural water-hole.  An unexpected oasis located amongst the rocky crevices and the perfect spot for a swim and lunch. 

Oman was well worth it, even with the lengthy layovers💚

 The Chedi lounge

The Chedi lounge

 Entrance to one of the restaurants at the Chedi 

Entrance to one of the restaurants at the Chedi 

 The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque recently completed 

The Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque recently completed 

Glamorous Living -  A Desert - Vacation - Doreen - Chambers - Interiors - Brooklyn - New York - South Florida
 Swarovski crystal all the way

Swarovski crystal all the way

 For daily oblutions

For daily oblutions

 Headscarves for everyone and if you were not fully covered upon arrival, a burkha was provided to wear within the mossque

Headscarves for everyone and if you were not fully covered upon arrival, a burkha was provided to wear within the mossque

 Desert Nights Camp - an Oasis in the middle of the desert

Desert Nights Camp - an Oasis in the middle of the desert

 Deserts Nights Camp's oh-so-cozy bedroom

Deserts Nights Camp's oh-so-cozy bedroom

Glamorous Living - A Desert Vacation - Doreen Chambers Interiors - Brooklyn -  New York - South Florida
 Speeding by land cruiser to catch the sunset

Speeding by land cruiser to catch the sunset

 Reggie captures the sunset

Reggie captures the sunset

 A man at one with his environment

A man at one with his environment

 Wadi Tiwi waterhole - an unexpected find among the rocky crevices and a perfect place for a swim to escape the unrelenting heat 

Wadi Tiwi waterhole - an unexpected find among the rocky crevices and a perfect place for a swim to escape the unrelenting heat 

Glamorous Living -  Desert Vacation - Doreen Chambers Interior Designer - Brooklyn - New York - South Florida
 A well chosen throw that goes with everything for the occasions where nothing less than a full head coverup is required -  Gucci silk blend scarf

A well chosen throw that goes with everything for the occasions where nothing less than a full head coverup is required - Gucci silk blend scarf

 Spice Bar

Spice Bar

Glamorous Living - A Desert Vacation - Doreen Chambers Luxury Interior Design - Brooklyn - New York - South Florida
 A selection of just about every dried spice and fruit you can think of

A selection of just about every dried spice and fruit you can think of