In this day and age, dining out is rarely only about the cuisine. All the details come into play; the location, ambiance, the socialization are all a part of making it a special event and all are equally important. When done to perfection, a restaurant’s design enhances all of these elements, unites them if you will. A simple meal seems that much more appetizing when combined with appealing furnishings, luxurious finishes, and of course the proper lighting.
For architects and interior designers, restaurant commissions can be invitations for experimentation. Sometimes their creativity adds that needed finishing touch. When tasked with building such statement spaces, a little extra drama or a few theatrical flourishes, which could be too overpowering for other architectural projects, are perfection in eatery venues. When it all comes together perfectly you have an amazing restaurant. Here are ten we think bear special mention, as some of the most amazing and unique restaurants in the world.
8. Labassin Waterfall Restaurant – Philippines
The Labassin Waterfall Restaurant sits among the most untouched nature of the region as it was formerly occupied by a farm and coconut plantations. Villa Escudero, located at San Pablo City in the Philippines, is a resort which even houses a museum. However its true attraction is the amazing restaurant at the foot of a small waterfall.
Bamboo dining tables and grass-fringed buffet stations are set a few feet away from the cascading waters of the Labassin Falls. Diners enjoy local dishes such as fish, curry meats and rice, as the sparkling water massages their feet. After lunch guests can even lie against the rushing water-covered wall and get wet.
7. Yellow Treehouse Restaurant- Warkworth, New Zealand
Built in 2008 this treehouse restaurant is a pod-shaped structure situated more than 32 feet above the ground in a Redwood tree in the town of Warkworth, north of Auckland. Diners access it using an elevated treetop walkway.
The Redwoods Treehouse was authorized for production as part of a marketing campaign by Yellow in 2008, once complete was turned into a beautiful venue for private parties or corporate events. A private event will cost US$2,500.00 and allows for the maximum capacity of 30 guests, the hire rate is for the day. Dinner starts at US$100.00 per person.
6. Troll Wall Restaurant, Romsdal Valley, Norway
The Troll Wall is the tallest vertical rock face in Europe, about 3,600 ft from its base to the summit of its highest point in The Romsdal Valley. The dining area is all about the view. This is a simple cafeteria which offers casual meals. In good weather, the best seats are on the terrace or the integrated bleachers. But even when rain or cool temperatures force people inside, the glass walls and steeply angled roof ensures great views.
The Romsdal valley has some of the tallest, sheerest cliffs in Europe and is a popular place for BASE jumping including “birdmen” jumping off cliffs in Wingsuits!
5. Ithaa Undersea Restaurant – Rangali Island, Maldives
The Ithaa undersea restaurant is located at the Conrad (Hilton) Maldives (just south west of India in the Arabian Sea), Opened in 2005, the Rangali Island Resort is a gorgeous and intimate underwater restaurant. It has a limited seating capacity of only 14 people. The eatery is situated more than sixteen feet below sea level, is all-glass and is encased in a transparent acrylic roof. Thus the venue offers a spectacular 270-degree panoramic view of sea creatures swimming in the Maldives’ crystal clear waters. While a zinc paint coating protects Ithaa’s steel structure from corrosion, the saltwater and marine growths adhering to the paint will eventually break it down so make your reservation while you can.
4. Dinner In The Sky – Worldwide
Dinner in the sky originated and the company is run in Belgium and is available in 15 cities worldwide, including Paris, Dubai, Montreal, Las Vegas, NV and Delray Beach,FL. The concept involves a crane which hoists a tableful of dining guests 160 feet up into the air. Everyone is securely strapped into “dining chairs”. Also onboard are waiters and everything else that is required to enjoy a meal while floating above the ground. This novelty-based flying restaurant has gotten very popular around the world and is now offered for limited runs in 15 cities around the globe, most recently in Montreal.
3. Nyotaimori- Many Locations
Nyotaimori is the Japanese tradition of eating sushi off a perfectly still, and naked woman’s body. Nyotaimori can be roughly translated to mean the ‘adorned body of a woman’, ‘female body plate’ or ‘female body arrangement’. The practice of eating sushi off of a naked woman, is a Japanese practice dating back to the late nineteenth century. Ladies, don’t quit your day jobs just yet. Before you can become a living sushi platter there is some necessary training. This involves learning to lie down for hours without moving. These women must also be able to withstand the prolonged exposure to the cold food. Before service, the woman is to have taken a bath using a special fragrance-free soap and then finish off with a splash of cold water to chill the body down a bit for placement of the sushi. In some parts of the world, in order to comply with sanitation laws, there must be a layer of plastic or other material between the sushi and the body of the woman.
This dinner party can be brought to you and served in the comfort of your own home or be arranged at a private venue of your choice. Nyotaimori is also offered in a private dining room at the world famous Spearmint Rhino London. However some countries, such as China have banned the practice due to public health and moral issues. Live entertainment is also offered. Nyotaimori has been a successful and established business since 2005. Prices are steep, beginning at US$1,000.00 per person.
2. La Maison 1888 – Danang, Vietnam
Inspired by three-star Michelin chef Michel Roux, La Maison 1888 restaurant serves French haute cuisine that is not to be missed. Designed by Bangkok-based Bill Bensley as part of the Intercontinental Danang Sun Peninsula Resort the detail of the structure is unique and truly breathtaking. The interiors of La Maison 1888 offer French Colonial architecture with a contemporary twist.
As the name suggests, the restaurant is situated in its own mansion-like “house” on the property. Illuminating the main staircase are pendant lamps made to look like Vietnamese birdcages, complete with the shadows of imaginary feathered friends.
1. Hajime Robot Restaurant, Bangkok, Thailand
The owner of this “robot run” restaurant has high hopes of success for this place as the investment of nearly $1 million for the purchase of four robots who serve diners is a high price to pay for success. Each robot is samurai-like (see photo). They act as waiters and they slide all the way to the customer’s table, bring their orders, cleaning up afterwards and they even do a dance routine to entertain guests. It would seem this owner will get his money back, as the place is popular and diners seem to be enjoying it enough to return for more.