5 of the world’s best hotel restaurants (and why guests love them)

  Posted in Hotel Management

They say food brings people together and research from Oxford University recently confirmed that communal eating “…increases social bonding and feelings of wellbeing, and enhances one’s sense of contentedness and embedding within the community”.

Combine this with the relaxed and happy feelings your guests have when they stay at your hotel and it’s feel-good vibes all round.

Your hotel restaurant presents, not only an opportunity to delight your guests, but to also boost revenue and stabilise any cash flow fluctuations you might face thanks to seasonal demand.

Get your restaurant offering spot on and you can attract guests on an international scale and become a local destination in your own right.

Here are five outstanding examples of hotel restaurants that have done exactly that – let’s look at what makes them unique and why guests who flock there love them so much…

Dinner by Heston at Crown Melbourne
Melbourne, Australia

Number of reviews on TripAdvisor
1,041

Unique Feature
What’s special about this place?
Famed for his experimental culinary magic, Heston Blumenthal’s only restaurant outside the UK resides in food-obsessed Melbourne, Australia at the Crown Melbourne. It’s booked out months in advance with Heston’s name attracting big crowds to, not only the restaurant, but the hotel too. The restaurant showcases 700 years of British cuisine and each dish on the menu is listed with a date highlighting the recipe’s time period origin. Of course there’s an Australian twist on the menu with lamington cake making an appearance.

Guest Reviews
Why do guests love it?
“My wife had booked months in advance for a birthday celebration and once inside we were taken back by the great setup and the genuine welcoming vibe from the staff. The restaurant sets a designated period for guests to bathe in the experience. Towards the end of our time we were only part way through our meal – we were allowed to linger for an extra 30 minutes to savour the meal and the great surroundings. Others have commented on the food and the wine and we fully support these comments and for the experience alone we felt that a bill of more than $500 for the two of us was reasonable.”

The Club Del Doge Restaurant at The Gritti Palace
Venice, Italy

Number of reviews on TripAdvisor
459

Unique Feature
What’s special about this place?
Guests can enjoy the surroundings of the Grand Canal here and The Club Del Doge Restaurant at The Gritti Palace takes al fresco dining to another level. People watching is the order of the day with gondolas frequently passing by. Dating back to 1475, the waiters echo the property’s former formal glory wearing tuxedos and serving Italy’s most premium produce on silver platters. The outdoor terrace is open from April to October and guests can enjoy the signature truffle risotto in this popular yet intimate setting.

Guest Reviews
Why do guests love it?
“I decided not to spend $1,300 for a room here (though if I were very rich I think I would do so happily, since this place is more than a hotel, it is the culmination of several strands of human culture). Instead, I did something I did NOT do when I did stay here years ago: I ate in the dining room. And though it certainly counted as an extravagance, I still smile thinking about it three months later. The most rich and ripe of Bellinis served in the golden glow of lighting that Vittorio Storaro might have designed. Deeply flavourful dishes that engage the latest food tendencies while never falling prey to the decadent theatricality that seems to attract Michelin stars in our degraded era. In short: I loved everything about it. And the decor? Only in Venice can such opulence be achieved without crossing the line. Come here if you want to experience life as art.”

Burger Joint at The Le Parker Meridien New York
New York, US

Number of reviews on TripAdvisor
4,847

Unique Feature
What’s special about this place?
Hotel restaurants and fine dining typically go hand-in-hand, but bucking this trend is the aptly named Burger Joint at The Le Parker Meridien in New York. Only a neon sign indicates the restaurant is there and finding the entrance can be tricky for those not in the know. Literally located in a ground floor back corridor of the hotel, diners queue around the block for the burgers and fries here. It’s fast food at its finest and proof that you don’t need big name Michelin-starred chefs to draw huge crowds to your hotel dining.

Guest Reviews
Why do guests love it?
“Finding this hamburger restaurant in the heart of Manhattan (56 W and 6th Ave) is an adventure. It’s hard to understand that one should enter that formal building, sneak behind a heavy curtain to meet Burger Joint. You have to have patience, especially in the peak hour of noon. The burgers and fries are memorable.”

The Black Swan at Oldstead
Oldstead, England

Number of reviews on TripAdvisor
1,304

Unique Feature
What’s special about this place?
Described by critics as “…an extraordinary place, a true one-off”, The Black Swan at Oldstead is both a Michelin-starred and four AA Rosette restaurant with a five-star hotel thrown in for good measure. Produce is grown and foraged on site allowing the innovative team of chefs to create truly seasonal dishes. Last year, the restaurant was named number one in the world by TripAdvisor having never made the list before. TripAdvisor describes the restaurant, headed up by Tommy Banks (the UK’s youngest Michelin-starred chef), as “…a tantalising trip for the taste buds. This restaurant is truly a box of delights. The flavours, combinations of ingredients and skill in putting together the menu are joyous”.

Guest Reviews
Why do guests love it?
“I got treated to a meal at the Black Swan for my birthday, we had the tasting menu with wine pairing and also stayed the night in one of their rooms. What can I say? The food was simply exceptional, and the wine pairing really set it off. The room we stayed in was delightful and had a real country cottage feel. The staff were all fantastic, and we were served a course by Tommy Banks himself! We had an amazing breakfast the following morning, then had an impromptu private tour of the farm gardens. We were even given some strawberry and tomatillo seeds to plant for ourselves! Such an incredible experience, I can’t wait to do it again someday.”

L’Auberge de l’Ill
Illhaeusern, France

Number of reviews on TripAdvisor
1,532

Unique Feature
What’s special about this place?
Serving opulent dishes – some that haven’t changed in 40 years – L’Auberge de I’lll is a French institution located on the banks of the river Ill in the village of Illhaeusern. Founded more than 150 years ago, the restaurant is family owned and they are famed for working the land, cooking with art and serving with heart. On the menu, the stars of the show are both the salmon soufflé and the whole black Perigod truffle coated in foie gras wrapped in pastry then deep fried. Legend has it that diners order the truffle to start and the truffle to follow – yours for a mere €125.

Guest Reviews
Why do guests love it?
“In 1985, my wife and I dined here and vowed that we would return: the meal was that good. This year we were planning to be in Alsace again and made a reservation. Our dinner — we had the seven-course menu degustation — was excellent in every way, and we matched it with the same wines we had in 1985, though not the same vintages; a half bottle of Schlumberger Riesling and a half bottle of Morey St Denis. Cheap is something else, but the restaurant is so agreeable, the staff so professional, and the food so good that you simply accept this is a rare and costly experience and pay. We don’t know whether we’ll get here for a third meal, but the first two are unforgettable.”

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