Ever visited a bland or shoddy restaurant while dreaming of being whisked away to a much more glamorous or exclusive location? Imagined a wonderful land in which diners could indulge in culinary delicacies in restaurants under the sea, in the clouds or up in the trees?
Well guess what, these places actually do exist right here on our blue planet, some closer than you may think. These kind of places could be perfect for occasions such as marriage proposals, pregnancy announcements or for the one in sixteen million amongst us,to celebrate a lottery win. Is flamboyance and the thought of being waited on hand and foot in the most exclusive restaurants is more up your street?
From the Maldives to Dubai to right here in the good old United Kingdom sit back and daydream at these Once In A Lifetime Restaurant ideas……….
Conrad Maldives: Ithaa Underwater Restaurant – Alifu Dhaalu Atoll, Maldives
There are sublime dining delicacies out there in the Maldives, but I charge you with finding a more unique and tranquil location than the Conrad Maldives. It’s the notion of a peaceful underwater paradise personified.
New Zealand designer M.J. Murphy based this unique restaurant design on a similar design to the Kuala Lumpur National Science Aquarium, with it’s 5m wide acrylic arch. It was built in Singapore and shipped by barge to Rangali Island in the Maldives, the journey taking a whopping arduous 16 whole days in total.
The successful construction created quite possibly the most peaceful, tranquil and romantic dining location in the whole of the world. With a capacity of just 14 people it couldn’t be much more exclusive, and listen to this, if the restaurant isn’t booked out for dinner, guests can request to stay the night in this underwater haven.
This restaurant comes with a separate lunch and dinner menu, serving dishes from maldivian lobster carpaccio to reef fish tartare poached quail egg. Not quite the everyday palate for most maybe, and the food and service certainly don’t come cheap, but this is a once in a lifetime restaurant after all. Everything has a price, and this may be the price of perfection to some. It’s easy to imagine honeymooners sharing special moments here, and this writer can’t helped wondering how many of the elite of society have dined here since it’s opening in 2005. If not they’re missing out by the looks of things.
Is there a more magical place to eat than under the sea? Cue Sebastian the crab from the Little Mermaid…….
L’Enclume, Cavendish St, Cartmel, Cumbria –
Located in the scenic medieval village of Cartmel, Cumbria, L’Enclume has some serious credentials. The Good Food Guide crowned it the best in the UK, beating Heston Blumenthal’s ‘The Fat Duck” into second place with a perfect cooking score of 10.
Owner Simon Rogan is renowned as one of the most innovative and exciting chefs around and he, along with his partner Penny Tapsell opened L’Enclume in 2002. Does the idea of food grown and raised locally excite? Well this could well be the place for you as the menu celebrates the fact Simon grows his own fruit, vegetable and herbs. He has even recently started serving livestock raised on his farm.
Wonderfully named dishes such as “Valley offerings, herbs and flowers, pork bits and pine salt”, and “Tokyo turnips, hen of the woods, truffle and nasturtium” ooze rural charm. It seems food doesn’t get any purer than this. Two other great factors about this selection are firstly for £120 the guest is treated to a diverse selection of 21 courses. Easy to imagine every tastebud tantalised there. Secondly, for those traveling from a considerable distance, L’Enclume has 17 different rooms available to stay the night, ranged from £99-£199 per room, which includes breakfast(which is quite certainly also amazing) .The price seems reasonable when considering the nature, nurture and quality of the service.
Diverse, peaceful, rural and best of all as a UK site it’s based right on our doorsteps.
At.Mosphere 122nd floor, Burj Khalifa tower, Downtown – Dubai – United Arab Emirates –
Has dining in the clouds ever appealed? At 1,350 ft high on the 122nd floor of the tallest building in the world this is simply the highest place to eat on Earth. At.Mosphere is in Downtown, Dubai, one of if not most the wealthiest and most flamboyant area in the modern world.
Burj Khalifa, the building which houses the restaurant, smashed all kinds of records upon it’s completion in 2009, from tallest structure to highest nightclub. The building is an example of architectural and engineering brilliance and is even considered by some to be one of the wonders of the modern world.
To add to this already unbelievable restaurant is head chef, Dwayne Cheer, who boasts 13 years working in Michelin star restaurants. Experience Foie Gras to Canadian Lobster Tail. Imagination and budget seem to be the only bounds here.
Treehouse Restaurant – The Alnwick Garden, Denwick Lane, Alnwick, Northumberland –
The Treehouse is quite one of the most unique restaurants to be found anywhere in the world. As pictures above it’s set up high in the treetops, with trees growing through the floor and boasts a roaring log fire. Warming to the heart and undoubtedly romantic. As with L’Enclume the food is locally-inspired and many say delightful.
All through the year the menu showcases local fish and seafood, meats from the farmlands of Northumberland and other regional and seasonal specialities. The range of beers and the wine list are quite impressive to cater for and accompany the adult dining experience and sometimes guests are serenaded with live music.
It’s not difficult to sell the idea of being treated to a meal in a huge tree-house surely? Especially suitable for those on a tight budget.The lunch menu is priced at £18.50 for 2 courses and £22.75 for three courses, while the dinner main courses range from £14.95-£18.95.
What’s the most special restaurant you have ever visited? Do you agree with any of these choices? It would be great if you could leave a comment below.
This article was written by John Leather, a DJ, blogger and most importantly lover of good food and dining experiences. If you like what you’ve read why not give him a follow on Twitter for rants, ramblings and food updates.