Tag Archives: alfresco

Harrison’s

Although Port Douglas is primarily known as a resort destination, you will not regret leaving the comfort of your resort for an upscale dining experience in town. Harrison’s is one of those places that is very unlikely to disappoint you, even if you have to travel the extra mile. It’s housed in a Hamptons-style beach house with a large porch wrapped around it. The simplistic decor and easy-going vibe don’t really do justice to the high quality food, but might be exactly what you need after a long day of reef diving and snorkeling. The menu is French and although better known for its meats, we also highly recommend Harrison’s fish dishes. Nothing beats enjoying a perfectly grilled Barramundi (Australia’s favorite!) and a nice ocean breeze while overlooking the harbor lights.  So reserve in advance, part with your flip-flops for just one night and head to this dining jewel in the tropics.

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The Verandah

India is a country of great contradictions, especially when you visit the larger cities where very poor neighborhoods can sometimes be found right outside the gates of the most impressive palaces. Therefore, in order to truly take in the Indian culture, we think it’s important to not only test your bargaining skills at local markets, but also experience a royal night out as a true Maharaja. Make reservations at The Verandah, the very best of the Taj Rambagh Palace’s three restaurants. This royal palace was the first to be turned into a heritage hotel in 1957. The royal experience starts as soon as you set foot on the hotel’s property. The neatly cut grass is bright green, the building’s royal features are perfectly lit and you are welcomed by the sweet smell of rose petals. Friendly waiters glide through the hallways wearing luxurious silk turbans and robes, smiling non-stop. This is the India of your dreams! Get a table on the grass to be able to admire the palace from the outside. The menu is nice, with a wide selection of international-with-a-twist dishes. Prices are sky-high and bargaining is not an option. But that has never stopped royalty, so why should it stop you?

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Cecconi’s

Inspired by the original Cecconi’s in London, Cecconi’s Miami Beach opened its doors in 2010 in the members only Soho Beach House. This classical Italian restaurant offers Venetian inspired food and is open to the public for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Besides delicious dishes such as beef tartare with pecorino, quail egg and black truffle, Cecconi’s offers an amazing setting in the hotel’s ground floor courtyard. The 150-seats dining area is outside, but the carefully chosen furniture and the pergolas with overhanging greenery make it feel protected and cosy.  The trees are wrapped in white lights that create a magical effect when the sun sets. This is without a doubt one of the most beautiful restaurants in Miami to dine al fresco, just steps away from the ocean. Even though the interior and food make you feel like you’re in Europe, a little people watching will take you right back to SoBe. A colorful crowd of attractive models, surgically enhanced has-beens and a celebrity or two seem to love Cecconi’s too.

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Agua

Barcelona is a port city. And since the ocean explains the very existence of Barcelona, you should try to eat fish at the beach at least once during your visit. For this purpose, restaurant Agua is the ultimate destination. Agua is located on the fashionable Passeig Maritim de la Barceloneta; you won’t find a better ocean view in a nicer neighbourhood. The swanky interior has a Hamptons-meets-tropics touch to it, with spacious, bright coloured rooms and ethnic details. Reserve a table on the outside terrace and order the catch of the day while sipping on your Spanish wine. La buena vida – Barcelona style! We recommend to come here around lunch time if you want to avoid the younger (and louder) crowds since Passeig Maritim is known for its vibrant club scene.

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Naia Bistro

Naia is an enjoyable bistro that is highly recommended by locals but fortunately not (yet) overly mentioned in tourist guides. It’s located on a charming cobblestone square in the Latin Quarter of Madrid. The outside terrace is very inviting and most groups tend to linger until late in the evening. Inside seating is just as delightful, with wooden floorboards and mismatched chairs to create a cosy, rustic ambiance. The menu boasts wonderful Mediterranean dishes such as foie shavings with Ruby port reduction, red tuna tartare with avocado ceviche and monkfish over truffle and egg risotto. Portions are generous and the food is presented beautifully – definitely not what you would expect for main courses that are all under € 20! These people definitely know their foods, which might explain the periodic table of food on the window… Make a reservation to avoid disappointment. You don’t want to miss out on that Cheesecake de “Oreo” now, do you?

  

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Eataly

Zagat’s survey 2011 research showed that Italian food is by far the most popular among New Yorkers. No wonder Eataly‘s founders decided to create a 50,000 square foot Italian food market place – or mecca if you like – in New York City’s Flatiron District. Eataly is the city’s perfect destination for (Italian) food lovers to find Italian delicacies and wines, a culinary educational center and a range of high quality eateries. But don’t even dare calling it a giant food court! One of the owners Mario Batali explains: “This isn’t a selection of restaurants under one roof. This is a retail store where we peddle the greatest of Italian gastronomy to people who want to eat it and know how to appreciate it.” Besides a great shopping experience, Eataly does offer several places to sit down. For a formal dining experience you can get a table at Manzo, which offers both traditional and modern Italian meat dishes. Or meet up with friends at Eataly’s enoteca La Piazza, with marble bars and standing tables where you can enjoy a glass of fine wine paired with delicious meats and cheeses. The most recently opened restaurant is Birreria, a laid back rooftop restaurant/beer brewery with a wide range of specialty beers and complimenting dishes. Buon appetito!

Besides New York, Eataly has stores in Italy and Japan, check the website for store locations!

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QC Terme Milano

OK, going to a spa might not be the first thing on your list when visiting Milan. At QC Terme Milano however, you will feel like a Roman goddess (or god for that matter) in this beautiful building surrounded by 16th-century walls. So you can actually consider this a cultural outing. Besides the large number of pools, jacuzzis, saunas and steam rooms, Terme Milano has a beautiful Spanish garden with hydroactive mineral baths. Between massages and dips in the pool, there are tempting buffets of fresh fruit, cheeses and juices to keep you going. This is not the most fashionable or trendy spa in town but the great location combined with friendly rates makes this a top choice. Instead of spending an entire day plunging, scrubbing and relaxing in the spa, you can also opt for a quick massage after a hard day of…well, shopping.

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The Park

Although the name might be a little unimaginative, The Park in New York’s Chelsea neighbourhood is worth walking the extra couple of blocks. The space is huge and although it might not feel like an actual park they did an amazing job on creating such a beautiful setting. The Park offers both indoor and outdoor seating in areas with names like The Garden, The Atrium and The Penthouse. The airy interior is decorated with trees, perfect lighting, bamboo accents and wicker chairs. Even though The Park turns into a club at night too, we recommend you to go here for breakfast or brunch (try the breakfast pizza!) and combine it with a stroll in New York’s famous elevated park: the High Line.

 

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Sirocco

OK, we’ve got to be honest with you: the food is not the reason you go to Sirocco. You go there to dine alfresco at the 63rd floor and indulge in the breathtaking views of Bangkok city. This restaurant literally offers dining on top of the world, far away from the hot and smelly streets of Thailand’s capital. Sirocco is located in the State Tower, home to other great restaurants such as Mezzaluna, Cafe Mozu and Breeze. You enter Sirocco through a golden Dome and walk down illuminated steps – a true stairway to heaven. When you’re done admiring the view, get ready to enjoy some great live jazz performances. After dinner drinks are served at the Skybar, which you might recognize from the hit movie Hangover 2. Be prepared to pay extra, especially compared to common Thai price ranges. But it’s worth it!



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