From discounts and deals to empowering events, here’s what’s going on around the nation.

March 8 marks this year’s International Women’s Day, a 24-hour event which celebrates the achievements of women around the world.

That makes it one of our favourite days of the year, naturally, and for 2018 we’re going to be getting in the spirit of things.

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How, you ask? Well, in a number of ways, thanks to a multitude of events and offers around the UAE.

Want to follow in our footsteps? We’ve pulled together some of the best #IWD goings-on for you to add to your diary…

Take in an inspiring talk

What She Said

W Hotels is bringing its What She Said series to the Middle East for the first time, with the first of the networking series held at the W in Dubai on March 7. The event will feature a line-up of inspirational speakers and panelists from the region, plus drinks, canapés, mingling and a workout class. The theme of the evening is Breaking Boundaries, and those getting on up stage will include Saudi mountaineer Raha Moharrak and hijabi ballet dancer Engy El Shazly.

Wet Deck, W Hotel, Al Habtoor City, Dubai. March 7,  from 7pm, free. Booking required through the GuavaPass app.

Tuck into a special menu

 St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort

In celebration of both International Women’s Day and Mother’s Day, St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort restaurant The Grill is putting on a new three-course menu for the month of March. The highlight is the dessert, which can be personalised with a photo in edible ink (because haven’t you always wanted to eat your own face?). You have to send a picture to at least 48 hours before you dine, and reservations are a must.

55&5th, The Grill, St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort, Abu Dhabi. Menu costs Dhs370 per person and is available from 7pm onwards, daily. Tel: (02) 498 8443.

Take a load off at the spa

Saray Spa

Whether you want to treat yourself or a woman who deserves it, Saray Spa’s pampering package should fit the bill. For Dhs300, the JW Marriott Marquis haven is offering a 30-minute facial or back massage followed by a 15-minute foot reflexology session. You also get an afternoon tea at La Farine Café & Bakery (think fresh scones, cakes and sandwiches) so you can make a real day of it.

Saray Spa, JW Marriott Marquis, Sheikh Zayed Road, Business Bay, Dubai. Spa open 9am to 11pm, appointment necessary, Dhs300 per person. Tel: (04) 414 6754.

Kick the weekend off in style


To celebrate International Women’s Day, Argentine eatery Gaucho is moving their Hola Chicas ladies’ night to Thursday instead of the usual Saturday. Gals get three complimentary beverages, and can order dishes from the menu (including nibbles such as lobsters tacos and tuna ceviche). There’ll be a live DJ too, so you can dance the night away.

Gaucho, Podium Level, Gate Village 5, DIFC, Dubai. March 8, 8pm to 11pm. Tel: (04) 422 7898. 

Sail away for the night

bateaux dubai

Take your ladies’ nights to the water next month, as Bateaux Dubai is hosting a twice-weekly food-and-drink fiesta onboard the iconic vessel. Expect a four-course menu plus three free drinks for Dhs199 a head, plus priceless views of Old Dubai.

JA Bateaux Dubai, moored at Bur Dubai Creek, Al Seef Street, Dubai. Dhs199 per person, offer available every Sunday and Monday throughout March. Tel: (04) 814 5553.

Feel inspired by regional artists

The Retreat Palm Dubai

R Gallery has chosen this month to launch its latest exhibition, one created with arts community group ZeeArts. The empowering display, which features works from seven female artists from around the world (including Egypt and Syria), is designed to “honour the acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who play an extraordinary role in history”. Sounds like pretty powerful stuff.

R Gallery, The Retreat Palm Dubai, East Crescent, Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, exhibition open until April 30. Tel: (04) 524 7777.

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Raise a glass

La Petit Maison

On International Women’s Day, La Petite Maison is treating all its female diners to a glass of bubbly. Whether popping in for lunch, dinner or a night out, the French eatery will hand out a tipple to women in its Dubai and Abu Dhabi branches. Cheers to that!

La Petit Maison, Gate Village 8, DIFC, lunch 12pm to 3.30pm, dinner 7pm to 11.30pm. Tel: (04) 4439 0505.