3 Upper Pickering Street
Parkroyal on Pickering
6809 8899 | parkroyalhotels.com
Dinner in the spanking new Parkroyal in Chinatown is a chance to see inside this head-turning hotel, which sprawls across an entire city block. The design is based on rice terraces; and mirrors, representing water, are used to great effect. Lime is the one and only restaurant and bar, a cavernous space located on the ground floor.
Three open kitchens are at the heart of the action, and chefs wearing regulation toques wield woks and whisks at a relaxed pace. The meal options are either the international à la carte menu or the buffet, and at $58 it seems foolish not to indulge in the latter. For starters, there’s a selection of seafood: prawns, mussels, oysters and spicy Thai salads; as well as breads and cheeses.
The staff are clearly busy and it’s a big room, so they don’t need pedometers to tell them they have walked many miles every shift. We choose to sit at the counter, instead of at a table or on a comfy sofa.
Hearty food options include pasta cooked to order – we liked the squid ink fettuccine in a fresh tomato basil sauce – and a succulent rotisserie-cooked ribeye. Asian options range from chicken curry to a delicious beef rendang with lotus rice. As with all buffets, save room for dessert: the spread includes a chocolate fountain, crème brûlée, tiramisu and an awesome bread and butter pudding.
The open plan means noise levels can escalate, but this is all part of the casual dining concept. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, the restaurant serves a steady stream of hotel guests, but everybody is welcome.