Dubai's Atlantis eyes expansion of eateries

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Atlantis The Palm, Dubai is expected to open eight casual dining concepts in 2013, a senior executive has revealed.

The hotel, famously home to fine dining restaurants Nobu and Ossiano as well as outlets by celebrity chefs Michel Rostang and Giorgio Locatelli, has shifted its focus to casual dining concepts following the success of new outlets The Burger Joint and Asia Republic.

Speaking at a conference debating the UAE’s culinary landscape, Mark Patten, vice president — culinary, said: “[Dubai] is shifting towards more casual dining experiences, moving towards an entertainment experience as well as dining experience.

“The entertainment element and ambience is a big part of that picture now in the industry, and a casual environment, so not only from a price point but something a little bit more casual.”

He said in comments published by Hotelier Middle East that the success of The Burger Joint at Atlantis was testament to this.

“We started it off realising how well it would go and I can tell you we average 580-600 hamburgers per day out of a disused area that was costing money, so it became very popular,” he said.

A similar approach was taken with casual Asian eatery Asia Republic, added Patten, paving the way for eight more casual concepts and just one new “premier” restaurant.

“So we’re focusing our energies; especially for next year I’m looking at creating another eight casual concepts and one premier concept. And that premier concept is probably a little bit underneath Nobu, it wouldn’t be as expensive as Nobu so again, that’s where I see drive now, that’s where Dubai’s heading.

“People want value for money, they want quality, they want fresh and obviously want a great environment, [where] they can see people and enjoy the environment, something with a bit of entertainment,” Patten said.

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