Whether you’re looking for sky-high fine dining or casual fusion fare, dinner on the sea or a date beside the pool, Singapore is full of options for a special meal out. Here are some of the island’s most romantic dining experiences.
Novelty meals in cities like Singapore are typically found atop towering skyscrapers or between the pages of the latest Michelin Guide. But if you’re looking to really surprise your date with something different, why not take to the water? The Royal Albatross – Singapore’s only four-mast, 22-sail luxury Tall Ship – offers an idyllic opportunity to cruise the shoreline while enjoying a three-course meal, live entertainment and the city’s sparkling horizon from a distance.
You’ll want to be punctual for this two-and-a-half hour dinner cruise, the Sunset Sail City Lights ($195 per person), which sets sail from her home berth in Resorts World Sentosa. It’s recommended that guests arrive an hour before the 7pm departure to get registered and familiar with the ship. At 47 metres, there’s plenty to explore, from the cosy Grand Salon to the two well-stocked bars on both the upper and main decks.
Royal Albatross’s galley (kitchen) boasts Italian stone hearth pizza ovens and all modern kitchen appliances that result in a restaurant-grade dining experience out at sea. In tune with the nautical notes, this season’s menu focuses on fresh seafood and charcoal-barbecued delights. To start, there’s hummus and tapenade to share, followed by a refreshing prawn Waldorf salad to get the appetite going. The main sharing platter that follows had us spoilt for choice with a selection of succulent lamb, Atlantic prawns and mussels and French chicken roulade served alongside rosemary potatoes, grilled corn and sautéed vegetables. There’s a brief break before dessert – a platter of sweet favourites from bread-and-butter pudding to decadent brownies and ice cream – to allow guests to wander, take in the scenery and maximise the photo opportunities.
If the sea breeze and magnificent views aren’t enough to get you in the mood, the three-piece band covers all the best love ballads and even gets the dance floor going post-dinner!
Bistecca Tuscan Steakhouse
Housed along heritage-rich Mohamed Sultan Road, this Tuscan-style steakhouse is an elegant spot for a special night out with your SO. The restaurant is dressed in brick walls and glamorous artwork, which add a touch of old-school Italian allure, while leather booths and wood panelling give the space a classy and upscale vibe.
The char-grilled bistecca alla Fiorentina ($188), a whopping 1.1kg T-bone, is truly a sight to behold. Seen on almost every table, this sharing-sized steak uses F1 wagyu beef that’s pasture-raised in Australia. It’s served in thick-cut slices true to traditional Tuscan fashion and has a marbling score of six; each bite is rich, succulent and extremely flavourful. For something more modestly sized, there’s also a selection of individual cuts like the tenderloin ($65) and bone-in sirloin ($90).
Before tucking into your steak, kick things off with starters like the polipo ($26) – slow-cooked octopus sitting on a bed of savoury romesco sauce – and burrata ($40), and other great sharing options like the pappardelle ($28) – al dente pasta tossed in a hearty braised oxtail ragu.
Wash it all down with an Italian sangria ($22) – rose wine, fresh orange, mirto, Cointreau and prosecco – and finish the night on a sweet note with a classic Italian dessert like tiramisu ($12) or pannacotta ($15).
If you have somebody special that you want to wow, Artemis is your place. With to-die-for views of Marina Bay and the CBD, Artemis manages to be elegant without being stuffy. Unlike a lot of other places in Singapore, there is actually space between the tables so you get more privacy here than other spots to whisper sweet-nothings. The incredibly attentive wait staff and talented sommelier are as impressive as the stunning panorama outside the floor-to-ceiling windows.
Chef Oliver Hyde’s menu of Mediterranean-inspired flavours is like a who’s who of the kind of meals you want to eat for a special occasion: lobster, crab, fish, pork, caviar, mouth-watering dessert – it’s all here and it’s all impressive. If it’s lunch you’re after, try one of the sets (two courses for $45, or three for $52).
For starters, we suggest the quinoa falafel with hummus, white cabbage slaw, za’atar ($19/$28), the hamachi fish tartare with apple horseradish and sea grapes ($26), and seared the Boston lobster with raspberry and mango salsa, and lobster reduction ($45/$70) – all divine.
For mains, highlights include stone bass with Jerusalem artichokes, oregano and mussels ($42), Iberico pork “secreto” with tomato “salmorejo” and jus ($40), roasted Atlantic cod with purple carrot mash and brown butter ($55) and O’Connor “côte de boeuf” (1.1kg; $165) with chimichurri and violet mustard.
Finish with an indulgent Valrhona chocolate torte with praline ice cream ($26) or the apple tarte tatin with salted vanilla ice cream ($16). A trio of cheeses ($26) with grape chutney, roasted walnut and raisin bread is always a great idea, too!
This new Duxton destination is an experience you won’t forget. From the moment you walk in, the service is impeccable. And, though it’s fine dining, there’s no stuffiness here; in fact, Michelin-starred Executive Chef Jeremy Gillon and Managing Director Anant Tyagi, both owners, couldn’t be warmer. The Normandy-born chef pops out of the open kitchen from time to time to check on guests in the intimate dining room (and by intimate, we mean seven tables only!), while Anant is behind the second-floor bar making cocktails or helping diners with their wine selections. Meanwhile, there’s a great upbeat playlist in the background, taking any fine-dining staleness or preconceptions out of the equation.
Start with pre-dinner drinks in the shophouse’s lounge-bar, which offers a bespoke experience, as well as signature cocktails ($18) and boutique spirits from all over the world. If you’re into whisky, try The Relaxer, made with The Chita whisky, Suze Gentiane liqueur, Umeshu Kanjuku Ume (a Japanese liqueur), jasmine green tea, lemon juice, egg white and Angelique (herb) syrup. If you’re into mezcal, go for The Keeper, with Barsol pisco, Pierde Almas mezcal, Aperol, egg white, lemon juice, grapefruit bitters, sage syrup and the aromatic herb agastache. Or, tell Anant what you like and he’ll whip something up to suit your taste!
Inspired by the mountainsides of Savoie, France, Jeremy uses 40 indigenous herbs that are flown into Singapore, and playfully incorporates them throughout all his dishes – right down to the delicious herb butter.
It’s all about tasting menus here, with your degustation experience customised to your personal dietary preferences. Choose from The Five Expressions ($98), The Seven Expressions ($168) and the True Gourmand Experience ($218), comprising five, seven and ten courses respectively. Though the menu changes, highlights for us included beetroot-infused monkfish topped with beetroot ravioli, grilled octopus with bonito flakes, roasted French crosne (a root vegetable like sunchoke) with black truffle, blood orange sorbet with white chocolate, kombu (kelp) and berce (a herb), and the roving cheese cart, of course! There are about 10 cheeses to choose from, so save some space.
NOX Dine in the Dark
NOX has a perfect balance of fine dining with a flair for the dramatic. Entering the restaurant’s cosy bar on the corner of Beach Road and Bussorah Street, you’ll be greeted by Jose, the funny and endearing Australian manager. His well-practiced spiel and darkness-related puns will have you relaxed and roaring with laughter in no time.
The welcome cocktails, described with the same tone and humour as Jose’s introduction, make a great talking point. The Tainted Love ($20) is the strongest cocktail on the menu – it contains absinthe, gin and four different liqueurs. No mixer needed here! If you’re looking for something sweeter, try the Greenade ($20), a light, refreshing gin-and-apple- based blend.
There are even warm-up games provided in the lounge before you head up to the restaurant. Don an eye mask and dig around in a bowl of dry rice for a prize. It’s fun, challenging and engages totally different senses. When it comes time to dine, Jose explains the process. All the wait staff are visually impaired but impeccably trained and will help you feel at ease with this multi-sensory culinary experience.
Heading up the stairs is a little daunting. As the door to the only source of light closes, you’re plunged into total darkness. It yanks your senses and slightly disorientates you, but the well-practiced servers know to expect this and gently guide you through the steps to your table.
Sitting in a completely dark room, with no people watching or technology to distract you (all personal belongings are locked away downstairs), you’ll find that you actually talk. Be it your first or thirtieth Valentine’s Day together, NOX connects you like no other restaurant can. Feeling for the familiarity of each other’s hands across the table, discussing what you think you might be eating, and just listening to the sounds of the restaurant can make for an intimate encounter that you’ll remember for years to come.
Created by NOX’s new head chef, Mohammad Shahrom, the food already has a challenge – how to entice the eater when they can’t see or be impressed by the presentation. But Chef Shahrom has created a menu that is memorable from first to last taste. Served in little easy-to-manage bowls, the food changes every few weeks based on seasonality and availability. Four different samples are served for entrée, main and dessert (the three-course menu is $88 per person), and you can choose to match each course with wine, cocktails or mocktails (pairings start from $30).
As there are no menus to pore over, and the kitchen is making the same dishes for everyone in the restaurant (dietary requirements are also catered for), the service is quick and efficient – there’s no delay in eating here! Adding to the fun factor is debating with your date over what you think you’re eating. And, if you really like it, feel free to lick the bowl – after all, no one can see!
You don’t have to travel far and wide for your Michelin fix; this elegant and intimate, award-winning restaurant is the spot to celebrate an upcoming birthday or anniversary if your date is a big foodie! Organised in partnership with Michelin Guide Singapore and Robert Parker Wine Advocate, the Art at Curate dining series features Michelin-starred guest chefs visiting from around the world on a quarterly basis, collaborating with resident chef Benjamin Halat to create exclusive “four hands” menus. The dining space is contemporary-sleek with light woods, marble and mirrored surfaces, and modern gold light fixtures – a warm and sophisticated atmosphere for sharing a special meal with your sweetie.
When there’s no guest chef in town, Chef Halat helms the kitchen with his interpretation of modern German cuisine. Having trained and collaborated with numerous decorated chefs for over ten years, the German-born chef is known for combining Eastern and Western ingredients, and experimenting with a mix of traditional and contemporary techniques to create artful dishes. The tasting menu is priced from $128 for five courses, with highlights like Senfsosse (poached cod fish, salsify, mustard) and Baden Baden (venison loin, red cabbage and pear).
Dolce Vita has a wonderful setting that overlooks the beautiful pool area of the Mandarin Oriental hotel. The alfresco setting is charming, but for those who prefer air conditioning, floor-to-ceiling glass doors adorn the restaurant, providing superb views of the Marina Bay area.
Chef Giorgio Maggioni presents a modern twist on Italian food at Dolce Vita. A must-try starter is treccia campana di bufala ($34) featuring buffalo mozzarella from Naples, handmade by spinning, cutting and twisting the milk curd over and over again; it’s cut at the table and served with sundried tomatoes, anchovies and olive oil. We also love the salmone marinato from the set lunch menu ($38 for two courses, $46 for three courses and $58 for four dishes) – cured salmon served with fennel and a citrus salad. Another don’t-miss signature is the carbonara ($30) – a creamy mix of homemade spaghetti with pecorino sabayon, pancetta and black pepper.
For dessert, go with the modern-looking tiramisu ($18), accompanied by ice cream and a light mascarpone mouse, or the warm chocolate tart ($18) with vanilla ice cream.
Past and present collide at Blu Kouzina where the splendour of ancient Greece meets Singapore’s Chinese heritage. Starry-eyed couples can dine on seasonally inspired small plates that are perfect for sharing. The warm and friendly atmosphere and authentic food – the organic extra virgin olive oil used in every dish comes from the owner’s family estate in Messinia – are just the ingredients you’ll need to kick-start a classic romance.
Start with some of their fluffy pita bread ($3.90), dipped in homemade hummus ($15.80) before moving on to a hot mezze like keftedes – beef meatballs with tzatziki ($11.80) – along with bougiourdi ($17.80), a red pepper dish stuffed with marinated spicy feta cheese. For mains, share the small meat platter ($55.80), consisting of two keftedes, one beef skewer, one soft beef patty and two lamb chops cooked to perfection, along with a side of fries and more tzatziki. If you have enough room for dessert, share the bougatsa ($13.80) – a light filo pastry filled with semolina cream – and wash it down with a cup of traditional Greek coffee ($5.80).
The vibe here is fun and relaxed, while the staff are friendly and willing to make recommendations. Get a seat outside on the terrace, if you can.
Located on the 24th floor of Hilton Singapore, this poolside restaurant offers an intimate, relaxed atmosphere that’s great for a weeknight date after work. The breezy semi-alfresco space makes the whole experience rather special.
Known for using natural ingredients and seasonal produce from Italy and Japan, the award-winning Il Cielo serves elegant Italian cuisine with a Japanese flair. Tokyo-born chef Yohhei Sasaki, who’s had training in Michelin-starred Italian restaurants in Tuscany and Lombardy, helms the kitchen. We tried two of his degustation menus – “Italy” ($88 per person) and “Japan” ($118 per person) – featuring signature dishes from the à la carte menu. You can make the occasion extra special with a wine pairing (additional $30 per person).
Highlights from the Italian menu include calamaro ripieno alla viareggina, a dish of stuffed squid served with squid ink sauce, Italian parsley puree, squid ink powder and sea water foam, and cappellini burro e timo, homemade angel-hair pasta with Maine lobster, thyme butter sauce and porcini crumble, topped with a generous portion of shaved black truffle.
If you opt for the Japanese menu, you’ll love the spaghetti ai ricci di mare, a sinful dish of homemade spaghetti, Hokkaido sea urchin, Sardinia bottarga (cured fish roe) and yuzu to balance out the umami richness. The la sfera dessert, consisting of a beautiful sphere of ricotta cheese espuma, lemon sorbet and honey gel, is a refreshing and delightful end to the meal.
A quaint restaurant with a homely atmosphere, Morsels serves experimental fusion cuisine created by award-winning chef Petrina Loh. Treat your loved one to an exquisite dinner, inspired by wholesome, nourishing ingredients. Toast to more great meals together with specially curated sake, craft beers or house-infused cocktails.
There are various sharing menus to choose from, starting at $85 per person, plus a 14-course omakase menu (priced at $135 per person) that’s sure to be unforgettable. Don’t miss out on the five-glass wine pairing for $100!
Looking for more great dining spots in Singapore? Head along to our Wine & Dine section.