At Littleboboon, we travel around the world to review restaurants and hotels for our customers, readers and for our own pleasure.
One thing we notice is in the hotel industry -- particurlarly at the high-end so called "5-star" resorts -- that not all 5-stars resorts are equal. For instance, let's have a closer look at the Anantara resorts in Thailand which belong to the Minor group.
We chose Anantara resorts in Thailand to spend our Christmas and New Year holidays with family and friends. We stayed at Anantara Bangkok Riverside from December 23rd 2017 to December 27th 2017, then Anantara Chiang Mai from December 30th to January 2nd 2018, and finally Anantara Bophut from January 2nd to January 6th 2018.
The Anantara Bangkok Riverside and Anantara Chiang Mai were true 5-star resorts, both were very well located and beautifully built with great services. Our rooms were nice, clean and superbly designed, especially at Anantara Chiang Mai. Each resort has it own identity and personality, with great breakfast buffet, restaurants and bars.
Our New Year's eve party with the Phantom of Opera theme at the Anantara Chiang Mai was one of the highlights of our trip to Thailand.
Then came our last stay at the Anantara Bophut. It was a disaster in every sense, from our arrival to our last day.
On arrival, we had to wait 40 minutes in the library before we could check into our rooms. In the four rooms that we occupied, each room had an issue: in one room, the television was not working, in the others the bathroom had not been cleaned properly, the telephone was not working, the air conditoning was extremely noisy and one headbed lamp was missing.
The breakfast buffet was very poor compared to Anantara Bangkok or Anantara Chiang Mai.
One early morning, a call from reception woke us up at 6:20am just to check if there was no fire in our room! Apparently their fire alarm was not working properly.
The last issue was for our last day: we had ordered a minivan to go to a restaurant outside the resort. Reception told us that a minivan was on the way only to inform us 15 minutes later that there was no minivan available for our group. When we asked them to order two taxis as there were eight of us, only one was available. Visibly even a simple request they were not able to manage properly.
That's exactly where the problem laid: in our humble opinion, Anantara Bophut is poorly managed, plus the resort looks quite old and run down, the team lacked training and certainly did not show a client-oriented attitude and sense of service that a 5-star resort demand.
It was clear to us that we would not recommend Anantara Bophut to our customers and readers.
Corner House in Singapore is a wonderful colonial house located in one of the most beautiful botanical gardens in the world. It is also the working place of Jason Tan, one of the most talented chefs in South East Asia right now.
Jason Tan's cooking is of French inspiration with some Singaporean twists, extremely delicate, refined and well balanced. His forte is the sweet and sour flavors which he combines masterfully.
For our dinner on January 6th 2018, we opted for the "Gastronomic menu", served in four sequences plus the usual amuse-bouche and petit fours for 115 Euros without drinks.
From the Hokkaido scallops to the chef's interpretation of Kaya Toast (a well-known snack every kid in Singapore loves to have for breakfast or as an afternoon snack) through the New Zealand blue cod, every dish was perfectly cooked and presented, the New Zealand blue cod being one of the best fish dish we had ever tasted: it was crispy, savory and simply plain delicious.
The wine list was impressive and eclectic. Your choices range from a glass to a magnum bottle.
The service was welcoming, professional, kind and in tempo.
Jason Tan is a chef whose talent is worth making a detour to discover.
There was only one (minor) flaw in this marvelous place: the beautiful colonial house is in need of some interior refreshing, particularly the salon area and the carpet on the stairs (new carpet needed), the restrooms need to be redone and upgraded as well in order to make this Corner House the perfect destination for fine dining in Singapore.
1 Cluny Road,
E J H Corner HouseSingapore Botanic Gardens (Nassim Gate Entrance)Singapore 259569T: +65 6469 1000www.cornerhouse.com.sg
The restaurant Gaggan was voted the best restaurant in Asia in 2017 by the controversial World's 50 Best Restaurants In the World. It was also recently awarded two stars in the famous Michelin Guide.
Is Gaggan the best restaurant in Asia? It's too vast a question to answer in our humble opinion, but we do know something: Gaggan's chef, Gaggan Anand, is one of the most provocative, progressive, creative and entertaining chefs working today on the high-end dining scene of the world.
Not only does Gaggan Anand offer great food, he offers his guests a total experience, a journey through modern Indian cuisine in 25 emojis. He creatively combines Thai produces and Indian flavors to present us with a colorful and savory collection of small bites in quick succession through the 25 courses.
It's really worth making a reservation a long time in advance and even buying a plane ticket to Bangkok just to experience the outstanding innovative Indian cuisine that you will not get anywhere else.
We had a memorable evening there on December 27th 20017 with family and friends, from the beginning to the end; from our French host to the wine, from the cocktails to the food, every moment was amazing and fun.
Diners should rush to Gaggan asap as they will only have another two years to taste the progressive Indian cooking as the chef has made a decision to close his restaurant in 2020 in order to open a new dining concept in Fukuoka, Japan.
Gaggan Anand and the likes of him (namely André Chiang in Singapore, Paul Pairet in Shanghai, Alvin Lueng in Hong Kong, Yoshihiro Narisawa in Tokyo and Eneko Atxa in Bilbao) are redefining what high dining should be - A total experience of the six senses.
68/1 Soi Langsuan, Ploenchit Road, Lumpini, Bangkok 10330
Tel: +66 2 652 1700
Issaya Siamese Club is the flagship of the chef Ian Kittichai who is a celebrity chef in Thailand.
With our friends and family, we decided to celebrate our Christmas dinner at his beautiful colonial mansion. Our table was set in the garden with candlelights, which gave us a feeling of intimacy and the privilege of dining at a friend's house.
Our whole table agreed on the set menu, priced at 1500++ Bath (45 euros) per person, which offered three starters, four main courses, a pre-dessert and a dessert.
The amuse-bouche and the three starters were indeed very tasty and very good, Ian Kittichai knows how to balance his spices and make the best of them in his dishes. The chef takes pride in the fact that all his ingredients are locally sourced and organic.
His main dishes (the Sankaburee Chicken; the Mussaman Lamb; the Prawn Star-Fried and Asian Multi-Grain&Chiang Mai Mushroom) were really delicious and full of flavors.
And finally, our dessert, the Jasmin Flower Panna Cotta was nothing short of a knock-out.
We were surprised that the Michelin Guide for it first edition in Bangkok this year bypassed chef Ian Kittchai and forgot to reward Issaya Siamese Club with the first star it so rightly deserves.
Issaya Siamese Club
Address : 4 Soi Sri Aksorn, Chuaphloeng Rd., Bangkok, Thailand
Phone : 02-672-9040-1
Gaggan ** (Gaggan Anand) - Bangkok, Thailand
Louison (Gérald Passedat) - Le Puy-Saint-Réparade - France
Racine * (Kazayuki Tanaka) - Reims - France
Issaya Siamese Club (Ian Kittichai) - Bangkok - Thailand
Restaurant AM * (Alexandre Mazzia) - Marseille - France
Arola * (Sergi Arola) -Sintra - Portugal
Oak * - (Marcelo Ballardin) - Ghent - Belgium
Pertinence (Ryunosoke Naito & Kwen Liew) - Paris - France
La Condesa (Indra Carillo) - Paris - France
Mraz & Sonh ** (Markus & Manuel Mraz) Vienna - Austria
Shiki (Alois Trant) - Vienna - Austria
Alma * (Henrique Sa Pessoa) - Lisboa - Portugal
Suivre le flux RSS des articles
Suivre le flux RSS des commentaires