Review: Ce La Vi, The Address SkyView

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With audacious glass elevators that slide up and down the exterior of the hotel set to open imminently, Ce La Vi is already positioned as one of the city’s unmissable new destinations.  Its location at the pinnacle of Dubai’s latest towering landmark – the Address Skyview in Downtown Dubai – guarantees it top billing on ‘must-do in Dubai’ lists, for tourists but also residents alike, and with a new brunch complementing it’s a la carte and evening offering, Ce La Vi is finally open for business and welcoming guests.

Ce La Vi is the latest global dining concept to open in Dubai, finding a home atop the recently opened Address Skyview Hotel.  Mark Bedingham, Executive Chairman of Catterton, the company behind the Asian-inspired eatery, takes CEO Middle East on a tour to the top.

“We believe in spectacular vistas and that is totally part of the Ce La Vi experience,” explains hospitality veteran Bedingham of the decision to partner with Emaar on its latest flagship property.

Perched on the 54th floor of the two-tower property, Ce La Vi certainly ticks the box when it comes to a location with the wow factor. A huge outdoor terrace sweeps all around the restaurant whose sliding doors can be opened out to connect with the outside forest of skyscraper tops.

“We are a three-in-one expression, with a restaurant, bar and mixology and music ultra lounge. The cuisine is interpretive of modern Asian cuisine rather than a replication. What distinguishes us is that international concepts tend to just be one, whereas we combine three ideas in one venue. The key is there is food, music and drinks.”

The façade has been adapted from the original architecture of the hotel to include sliding doors and the 360-degree wraparound terrace that allows indoor-outdoor dining. The bar and music area features padded panelling and a specially painted ceiling to enhance the acoustic experience.

A lighting system with moving lights, illuminated column lighting and LED lighting allows the space to transform at night into a high-energy venue, with DJ or live music entertainment. The indoor-outdoor concept extends to the bar, with the wraparound terrace making no compromise in allowing the sweeping city views to take pride of place.

The Korean-American head chef, Howard Ko, brings over a decade’s worth of culinary experience at leading Michelin-starred restaurants including The French Laundry and Picholine.

“Food is his passion and we are very lucky to have him, he’s worked at three-Michelin starred restaurants, our pedigree of staff is very high across the board,” Bedingham says.

Dishes in the Dubai outpost of Ce La Vi (the fourth of five to open globally) include small plates such as grilled lamb ribs, sweet and savoury shiitake donuts, Spanish blue fin tuna, and scallop and oyster ceviche.

Main courses feature twists on Asian dishes such as a black truffle sushi rice risotto, Dutch mussels with green curry, wagyu-fat poached black cod, and a braised lamb neck with Indian spices, beans and pomegranate.

“The Ce La Vi menu concept is adapted a little for each location, whether in Shanghai, Tokyo, Taipei or Singapore; here in Dubai there are a few Arabic influences in the menu that reflect its location,”  Bedingham adds.

Perhaps they should add airplane food to the list – at such a height, there’s really nothing else that adequately reflects that astonishing view. 

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