Valentine’s Day may be divisive – why do we have to be in love in the middle of February? – but everyone can agree on the appeal of Galentine’s Day. This unofficial holiday debuted in a 2010 episode of Parks and Recreation, reminding us to celebrate our female friendships every year on February 13. And the good news here? We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to girly cafés, many of which are hidden gems in their own right. From Insta-worthy interiors to mouth-watering menus, here, we round-up our top 10 picks in Dubai.
‘Old but gold’ is the phrase that best describes this café. Super popular amongst health-conscious women, it features a botanical setting that perfectly reflects all the charming vibes you need for a girls’ day out. As for its menu? There’s plenty of vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options, so you’re sure to find something that’ll suit everyone’s palettes.
Bounty Beets, Le Meridien Mina Seyahi, Dubai Marina, 04 511 7373, www.bountybeets.com, open 8am-10pm daily
The super pretty Boston Lane is tucked away at The Courtyard in Al Quoz, making it a true hidden gem. While the café is quite small, its ambience embraces a concept store feel, complete with trinkets and books exuding just the right amount of coziness. Alternatively, you can grab a seat outside with your girlfriends to enjoy the gorgeous weather that comes with this time of year.
Boston Lane, 25 4B Street, The Courtyard, Al Quoz, 054 449 2131, www.instagram.com/bostonlane.dubai, open 8am-6pm daily
Brunch & Cake
Originating in Barcelona and running three branches in Dubai and one in Abu Dhabi, Brunch & Cake is easily one of the most Instagrammable cafés for a day out with the girls – its boho-chic aesthetic is what makes so many patrons returning to more. And then there’s the brightly coloured açai bowls and signature brekkie board, both hearty and downright delicious. SMiZE and Dream, Tyra Banks’ signature ice cream line, is also available at select locations.
Brunch & Cake, Ground Floor, Jumeirah Islands, The Pointe, and Wasl 51, 800 472 6362, brunchandcake.com, open 8am-22:30pm daily
Between its delicious dinner options, decadent cakes, and overdose of pink detailing (flowers, vases, and furniture included), Saya is not your ordinary café. But whether you and your friends are fans of the colour pink or not, it’s the food you’ll want to return to. We recommend the Saya Signature Benedict (with beetroot hollandaise) and Spanish lattes infused with lavender or caramel as the perfect combination.
Saya, The Pointe, City Walk, Wasl 51, and other locations, 050 541 8373, sayacafe.ae, open 9am-1am daily
Lou’Loua by Nadia
With an ambience and accents adorned in pink, purple and rose gold, every corner of this café feels delicate and girly – but the picture-perfect aesthetic of this café is not limited to its interiors alone. Not only is the food here easy on the eye, but it also fuses Middle Eastern flavours with a modern twist, making it a must-visit for foodies across the city.
Lou’Loua by Nadia, 225 Jumeirah Street, 04 331 3310, www.instagram.com/loulouabynadia, open 8am-11:30pm daily
Having received a shout-out from a popular celebrity (hint: Drake) before it even opened, Vibe Café practically belongs on your bucket list. With itssteady stream of hip-hop jams, kitsch accents, and just the right amount of pink, it has created the perfect ambience for a girls’ hangout. And if you and your girls are into clean eating? Well, your search ends here.
Vibe, Lamar Building – Unit #30 – Al Wasl Rd, 800 8423, www.vibeuae.com, open 8am-10pm daily
The wonderfully elegant Parlour Boutique can be your go-to option for a hangout if you’re planning to catch up with friends after work on a Thursday night. Located in the Dubai World Trade Centre area, the café has an extensive collection of French delicacies on its menu, all of which translate perfectly to ‘cheat day’.
Parlour Boutique, One Central, World Trade Centre Dubai, 04 3865333, parlour.ae, open 8am-7pm daily
Sereni-Tea by Tania’s Teahouse
If you’re looking to indulge your inner child during a girls’ day out, then head straight to Sereni-Tea by Tania’s Teahouse. While the flagship location in Umm Suqeim is currently in the process of expanding and relocating to Dubai Hills Mall, Sereni-Tea in Al Wasl has expanded hours and a more extensive menu. From unicorn toasts and an al fresco patio to keep your pooch content to a selection of beautifully packaged handbag essentials to shop, this café is a one-stop shop. Incidentally, the wholesome range of Magic Mylks (nut milk lattes) is hands down our favourite.
Sereni-Tea by Tania’s Teahouse, 9 Street 29B – Al Manara – Dubai, 0585982642, www.taniasteahouse.com , open 7am-8pm daily
Forever Rose Café
Opened recently at Boxpark, this café is a 2D wonderland that we’ll never tire of. From the tables to chairs and even plates, everything at this café is concepted in 2D monochrome, with red roses adding only the slightest contrast – you’ll feel like you’re in a whimsical children’s book from the moment you step in. Menu-wise, everything from breakfast and light lunch to high tea options are on offer.
Forever Rose Cafe, Al Wasl Road, Boxpark, 04 548 4210 @foreverrosecafe, open 9am-12pm daily
Secret Garden by L’ETO
A floral wonderland isSecret Garden By L’ETO in a nutshell. With one branch in Dubai Mall and another in City Walk, the café is all about flowers adorning every inch of its walls and ceilings. The menu, meanwhile, focuses on soulful cuisine, so expect colourful healthy bowls alongside gorgeous desserts that taste as good as they look.
Secret Garden by L’ETO, City Walk & Dubai Mall, 04 388 2080 @secretgarden.global, open CityWalk 10am-10pm, Dubai Mall 10am-1pm daily