Need To Know
82, including 20 suites, private villas and a presidential retreat.
12 noon (flexible, subject to availability and a 50% charge up to 6pm); earliest check-in, 2pm. Guests arriving early or leaving late are welcome to use all the resort's facilities, including the spa; there's also a day-use villa for freshening up.
Double rooms from £491.38 ($629), including tax at 17.4 per cent.
Rates usually include a fantastic buffet breakfast (otherwise charged at AED129 per adult, AED65 per child). Children Under-6s stay free in parents' rooms; extra beds for kids aged 7–12 cost US$35 a night (US$100 for over-12s).
Most public areas are wheelchair accessible (though the paths inbetween are uneven stone or sand); the spacious one-bedroom villas are all on one level and best suited to the elderly or less mobile.
At the hotel
Beach with watersports; family-friendly swimming pools; restaurants; bar; kids' club; spa with hammam, sauna and gym; personal training; tennis courts; library of books, CDs and DVDs; free WiFi throughout.
In your room
Flatscreen TV with satellite channels, DVD player, pre-loaded iPod and dock; well-stocked minibar and wine chiller, free water, espresso machine, kettle, slippers and bathrobes, alfresco shower. In-room treatments are available. Guests staying in Spa suites also get one 50-minute massage or acupressure treatment each, every day (among other benefits).
Our favourite rooms
Laid out like a traditional Omani village, individual stone-walled dwellings house standalone villas and villa suites. Any villa can accommodate two adults and two children (one on a day bed, one on a foldaway bed) – but one-bedroom Pool Villa Suites have separate living and bedrooms, plus an extra bathroom, so you don't have to share an open-plan space with the kids. Every villa has a private plunge pool with sunloungers, a terrace with dining area, private sand 'garden' and shady outdoor majlis (seating area) and an outdoor shower. Pick of the bunch are the beachfront villas, with only a few sandy footsteps between you and the water (less ideal if your littlest are into escapology). Add 'Zighy' to your room name, and you're going up in the world: these duplex villas have a second bedroom and living space on the upper floor – Zighy Pool Villa Suites also have dining rooms and balconies. For the biggest families, the Retreats are huge two-bedroom villas on two floors, with large pools, and a fitted kitchen leading onto a small third bedroom for a butler or nanny.
The heated infinity-edged pool points towards the sea, with plenty of palm-shaded loungers (and the occasional mountain goat) reflected in its surface. Staff are at your beck and call for snacks, drinks and cooling sorbets, and there are lifeguards on duty. There's also a saltwater swimming pool with Roman steps and swim-round islands (fret not, you can order drinks here, too); children are welcome at both, and there are two paddling pools.
The Six Senses Spa has two Arabic-style hammams, sauna and steam rooms. It has a holistic approach and a brilliant menu of locally-inspired treatments using indigenous ingredients: frankincense, goat's milk, dates, almonds, honey, rosewater, sea salt, lime and mint… all designed to leave you feeling as delicious as they sound. There are a handful of couples' treatments, as well as some for men. It's adults-only, but accompanied 12–15-year-olds can have treatments. Fitness fans can run off some energy in the gym, on the beach or with expert yoga, meditation and Pilates instruction. Treatment programmes lasting three, five or seven days can be tailored to treat stress, kick-start a fitness regime or detox you from top to toe.
There's no such thing as a corner shop here – and although the hotel's mini-souk sells lovely gifts and a few (pricey) basics, if your bambino is still in nappies, you'll need to bring a big stash with you.
At peak times, it's wise to book your dream spa treatments and activities ahead of arrival; babysitters or nannies can usually be arranged with 48 hours' notice.
Six Senses is committed to sustainability, and has an admirable policy of supporting the community by working with local charities and schools. It has been involved in the creation of a protected marine area, to raise awareness of the Musandam peninsula's unique eco-system. There's an organic kitchen garden onsite, and, best of all, it eschews the import of trendy H2Os, makes its own mineral water with a crystal plant, and donates 1 rial from each sale to its social responsibility fund.