Fun for hard-working hubbies while the family is away
A new idea Like the main picture? Yeah, I thought that might get your attention. These guys are usually out on the beach at either dawn or dusk bashing each other with sticks and it’s not only really cool to watch (just check out the gaggle of oohing and ahing kids and dads) but also a great form of self defence (in case you ever get attacked by an angry Shaolin monk) and part of a superb new fitness discipline that’s just been introduced at the, also new, Last Shadows club which runs out of Fitness Zone in Juffair. As far as we can gather, we’ll be talking to the Master for next month’s issue, it involves combining various forms of martial arts - coupling the close combat of judo with the more remote moves of karate or the slow precision of Aikido. Throw in elements of kick boxing and the aforementioned stick fighting and you’ve got a full-body work-out that’s both mentally and physically challenging. (Call 39 795 873)
Bowling++ It may not be ‘so macho’ but at least a bit of practice now means you might beat the kids when they get back and it’s a great chance to bond with ‘the blokes’. You can play every day of the week from 8.30am to midnight at Funland on The Corniche (3am if you go during Ramadan!) at just BD2 per person per game including shoe hire. (Call 17 292 313)
Have to say though, my choice would be Al Bander Resort over in Sitra beside the Bahrain Yacht Club. Not only does it have six bowling lanes but there’s a games room with billiards, darts, board games and computer games, loads of water sports including banana boats, row boats and canoes, deep-sea fishing and tennis and squash courts, who knew there was so much? The pool’s under renovation right now but there’s a beach and swimming lagoon so who really cares? Yes it’s members and guests but you can hire a two-bed chalet for BD118++, that’s less than BD30 a night. (Call 17 701 201)
Burn rubber Frustrated dreams of hitting the F1 Circuit? Try your hand at karting. It’s where lots of the legends started, admittedly mostly as pre-teens but what’s a few years between friends right? The Viva Karting Track at the BIC is open over the summer with ‘Arrive and Drive’ packages for beginners and a ‘Mini Grand Prix’ package for groups of between 10 and 25. It’s a sprint race package that includes three different sessions and everyone takes part in the practice/qualifying, as well as the two racing sessions. Race results and lap timings are measured with an F1-style timing system and displayed on LCD screens and printouts are distributed to everyone – post it with your pics on Facebook. Sessions have to be booked and confirmed 48 hours in advance and the Mini Grand Prix takes place from 10.30pm-midnight. (Call 17 451 988)
Gone fishin’ I wanted to send you off for another after-dark adventure but there’s still a sea curfew from 5pm to the early hours. However, you can hire a good range of boats, with captain, for a full day’s island hopping, swimming, picnicking, diving or, yes, fishing from Al Bander (17 701 201), Art Marine (17 580 636), Bahrain Yacht Club (17 700 677) and Coral Bay (17 312 700) for parties from two and upwards. You can also take leisure trips from Al Dar (17 704 600/39 991 377), the island off the coast of Bahrain, which is reached by boat from Sitra Fisherman’s Port.
Jet Skis at Al Dar Speaking of Al Dar, get out of Bahrain for a day. Go early, take some pals, hire some Jet Skis and have some fun. You can take the rays, with sunscreen of course, have a few beverages and let off some steam. They’ll kick you out when it’s time for the last boat so no need to worry about overstaying your welcome. Take your CPR or passport as you’ll need to hand it in at the coastguard station before you get on the boat. The ‘waterbikes’ can also be rented at Al Bander and Coral Bay, among other places.
Suck on a stoagie Everyone loves a cigar, whether it’s for a celebration or just for the sheer decadent pleasure of it, and there’s no better place to experience that pleasure than The Burlington Club at The Ritz-Carlton. With soft lighting, leather sofas and winged chairs, it recreates a typical ‘gentleman’s club’ with a cigar menu that has been created specially to complement the tastes of aficionados who will find the humidor stocked with some of the finest from Havana. Open noon-2am. (17 586 499)
Tee off Time on the course is probably a precious commodity and now’s a great chance to catch up. Take advantage of the (slightly) cooler evenings at the Royal Golf Club. On weekdays you can book a 9-hole round of night golf on the Montgomerie championship course for BD20 per person. Or improve your swing by joining the PGA professionals for a special one-hour golf clinic every Tuesday evening in July and August starting at 6pm and rounded off with a refreshing cold drink and snacks in the exclusive members’ lounge at BD15 per person. (Call 17 750 777) While the cat’s away You’re stuck here working while the family’s away so maybe you can give yourself a proper treat?
Skydive over the desert Not cheap (BD175 plus a flight to Dubai) and a bit dodgy because it’s dependent on the weather and you might cough up the cash and find it has to be put off till another time, which is not really the point. Or, worse still, chicken out which would be just so embarrassing. But it’s tandem and safe, exhilarating, breathtaking and can be life-changing (I gave up smoking to save for lessons). (Call +971 50 153 3222, www.skydivedubai.ae)
Party in Beirut Not cheap, Gulf Air goes there as do lots of the budget airlines, and a bit dodgy because… well it’s Beirut! But it’s exhilarating, at times breathtaking, in parts incredibly beautiful, varied with loads to see, do and experience and just overall pretty fabulous. Who knows, it might even prove life changing. Stoke up the Barbie Real men rip the flesh from live beasts and eat their spuds raw right? If you prefer yours lightly broiled with friends, we recommend the cuts from Sage & Sirloin in Hamala (17 611 949), they’ll even prepare it for you, or Organic Foods & Café in Seef Mall (13 333 285), it’s organic don’t you know.
The ultimate boys’ night out July 1’s the final of Euro 2012 and with England through to the quarters there’s even more excuse for a party (lady fans welcome of course)