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An Evening of Dining in Helsinki, in New York

An Evening of Dining in Helsinki, in New York

During the week of September 12 to 19, taking a trip to Scandinavia was as easy as stepping into a restaurant in New York. Well, almost as easy.

The second annual NORTH Nordic Food Festival , featuring over 25 participating chefs, returned to the city with pop-up dinners, cooking classes, and panel discussions, all — of course — with a focus on Nordic food culture. Arranged by online culinary magazine Honest Cooking, the festival was well-received, with several sold-out events and interesting new additions to the schedule, such as a Nordic hot dog competition and street food festival.

While several chefs were new to the festival, some of the talent form last year made reappearance, with new and exciting culinary events, including Sasu Laukkonen, chef and partner of recently Michelin-starred restaurant Chef & Sommelier in Helsinki, Finland.

In addition to showing eager New Yorkers how to prepare “Finnish Grandma Cooking” at one of the festival’s cooking classes, Laukkonen was also in charge of showcasing refined Finnish cooking, true to the style of what he serves at his restaurant back in Helsinki, during a sold-out dinner. The pop-up event, “An Evening in Helsinki,” presented by Visit Finland, was — like the other NORTH pop-up dinners — held at The Old Bowery Station in lower Manhattan, and consisted of a five-course vegetable-heavy menu.

September is traditionally the start of “harvest season” in Finland, as Laukkonen clearly expresses in his menu filled with earthy ingredients, true to the local flavors of Finland. Think venison tartare stuffed in rings of hay-pickled onions with leek ash; simple yet flavorful mushrooms and root vegetables; cod and horseradish with a potato and fennel side (which, tasted like a refined version of a dish my own Finnish grandma makes); and a rich and surprising cheese dish of Danish Krondill with crumbles of traditional rye bread.

The highlight of the night may still have been the dessert, consisting of cinnamon roasted carrots, sea buckthorn, local apples, and a lemon verbena. The carrots, which, as Laukkonen revealed, were simply rolled in cinnamon and baked in the oven at 400 degrees F, had an almost licorice-like flavor that was both unexpected and perfectly fitting for the Finnish theme.

“Right now, the mushroom and root vegetable dish is the only one truly similar to something I have on our menu back in Helsinki,” Laukkonen said when asked if the menu was simply a modification of something he serves at Chef & Sommelier, or designed specifically for the festival. “But maybe some elements and ideas of what I made for the festival could be perfected and translated to our menu,” he added. While the dishes may have been different from his Helsinki restaurant, the concept and preparation methods stayed true to Laukkonen’s style: focusing on simple, organic, and local ingredients, elevated for a refined and modern setting.

Different Blocks, Different Outdoor Dining Scenes, One Deep Economic Divide

This past summer, on any remotely pleasant Saturday night, Vanderbilt Avenue in Brooklyn’s Prospect Heights neighborhood was a full-on block party. The street was shut down to vehicular traffic. People laid red-and-white-checked picnic blankets on the streets. Others lazily sipped gin cocktails outside Weather Up. The restaurants along the avenue, places like Olmsted, Alta Calidad, and Chuko, served plates of glistening spareribs and oversize bowls of miso ramen to packed tables of customers on sidewalks, under the glint of string lights, surrounded by umbrellas, snake plants, and beds of artificial turf.

A few blocks over, on Nostrand Avenue in Crown Heights, it was a different story. There were plenty of open restaurants, but none were busy. Cars zoomed up and down the street. Chairs and tables were minimally stationed outside but with few decorative accents. No string lights, no artificial turf, but the food spoke for itself, from the thickly crusted jerk chicken at Peppa’s to the grilled shrimp skewers stained with tamarind sauce at La Ñapa, a tapas bar.

“It does feel pretty dead,” Francisco Anton, chef-owner of La Ñapa, messaged me one August evening. He added that his neighbors were heading to Vanderbilt to hang out.

Last June, New York City’s mayor, Bill de Blasio, announced an outdoor dining program that’s now become a permanent fixture of the city despite the fickle opening and closing of indoor dining. For many struggling restaurants, it's been a lifeline. But not for Anton. The $10,000 he was quoted by an architect for an outdoor build-out is more than his small family-run restaurant can afford. And in November, the city sent out new guidelines requiring roadway barriers and at least two open sides for outdoor booths. Anton says the cost of an insulated, well-designed outdoor dining setup is the same as opening a second restaurant.

There are other factors too: Anton says street cleaning doesn’t happen frequently on his block, resulting in clogged storm drain grates and dirty sidewalks. And during the heightened tensions in June, the city removed trash cans from his block and other neighborhoods in the city to prevent people from throwing them into storefronts, which has caused an increase in street waste. Nostrand is also a major avenue with tons of traffic, and its express Select Bus Service route would make it ineligible for Open Streets, the program that allowed restaurateurs along Vanderbilt Avenue to expand their business beyond the sidewalk. “No one is going to want to sit outside with a bunch of gray snow to eat at my restaurant,” he says. “They will go to neighborhoods that are better kept by the city.”

Restaurants are an aesthetics-driven business. Design and atmosphere set the tone for a meal before any food arrives at the table. But hiring a designer means ponying up for fees and materials in an industry with single-digit margins. And in New York City, where socioeconomic divisions run deep, rents are sky-high, and one-third of small businesses are expected to close because of the pandemic, many restaurants lack the infrastructure and financing that their high-end counterparts do. And many of those restaurants are run by immigrants and Black and brown communities and are located in under-resourced neighborhoods. Outdoor dining—and the winter—has made these inequities even worse.

In the 10014 zip code, which covers the affluent and nearly 73 percent white Greenwich Village, an estimated 64 percent of restaurants are open for outdoor dining (according to data calculated by dividing the number of restaurants open in a zip code, per the Department of Transportation, over the number of restaurants in that zip code, per the NYC Department of Health). By contrast, in the 11213 zip code of Crown Heights—a majority Black neighborhood where the average salary is $35,000—just 16 percent of restaurants are open for outdoor dining. This speaks, in part, to the lack of access to design resources that would allow owners to make their restaurants compliant with city regulations and reopen, says Sreoshy Banerjea, the assistant vice president of urban design for the New York City Economic Development Corporation.

Banerjea helped start Design Corps, a recent partnership between NYCxDESIGN, a global design festival in New York City, and the New York City Economic Development Corporation to offer pro bono design assistance to restaurants. So far, 50 restaurants have applied to the program—many seeking help with weatherproof setups—and there aren’t enough volunteer architects to meet the demand.

Other organizations doing similar work include the Van Alen Institute’s Neighborhoods Now, which connects design firms with businesses in neighborhoods hardest hit by the pandemic, and Design Advocates, an organization of architects offering pro bono design services to small businesses in New York City in need, including restaurants like La Ñapa, whose setup is still in process.

Michael Chen, one of the cofounders of Design Advocates (and the founder of his own architecture firm, Michael K Chen), says there’s a huge gap in understanding of government regulations around outdoor dining, especially among restaurateurs who can’t afford lawyers but also can’t afford to temporarily close. Often, these are small restaurants in under-resourced neighborhoods operating day-to-day, without elaborate business models. A big part of Chen’s work is just translating the legalese and coming up with solutions to help restaurants avoid receiving violations (Design Advocates is currently working on plans for plastic partitions, heated seats, and overhead electric heaters that can be made affordably and installed easily). Other barriers include language, technology, and physical street space available, adds Val Hoffman, the program director for NYCxDESIGN.

The outdoor dining setup that Design Advocates is currently working on for La Ñapa will definitely be a game changer, according to Anton. With 31 seats, it’ll help him to hire back many of his workers, largely immigrants who he says were unable to receive unemployment. But it’s taking time to design, and it keeps getting more expensive as winter creeps in, with the cost of heaters and air curtains. He’s not sure when the outdoor installation will be up and running and must rely on takeout and delivery in the meantime.

Mouna Thiam, the owner of Le Paris Dakar, a French Senegalese café with three locations in Bed-Stuy, says that if Design Advocates hadn’t offered to help, she wouldn’t have any outdoor dining. She was initially quoted $8,000 without the furniture for a build-out by another design firm, and her restaurants are making half the revenue they were before the pandemic. Her outdoor setup, which includes pale pink umbrellas and big bunches of daisies, brought in meaningful business over the summer, though she can’t afford heat lamps right now.

But access to design resources like these don’t resolve existing inequities in these communities. Even if she were offered help, Cassandre Davilmar, who owns Lakou Café, a Haitian-American restaurant in Weeksville, Brooklyn, isn’t sure she could make outdoor dining work in her neighborhood.

“We are on Utica, which is a pretty congested area, and we are not one of those streets with a huge sidewalk,” she says. She initially saw outdoor dining as “a hindrance in the neighborhood, taking up parking spots in an already congested area.” Like on Nostrand, there isn’t much street cleaning along Utica. “There is a lot of trash rolling down the street,” Davilmar adds.

On top of this, her neighborhood was one of those hardest hit by the COVID-19 virus. “Do I really want to encourage folks to sit outside when we were a coronavirus hot spot?” she asks. Still, she set up four tables on the sidewalk with umbrellas, plants, and tents. “We are one of the few places in the neighborhood that was a sit-down spot, so I don’t want us to just do takeout,” she says. But the wind knocked over the plants and broke the umbrellas and tents. She put in a request with Open Streets to get her street shut down to traffic on weekends, like Vanderbilt Avenue, but it was denied because of the location along a major bus line. “I was like, ‘There are bus lines on Vanderbilt,’” she says.

“It is hard, because we deserve nice things, too,” Davilmar explains, “but at the same time all those structural inequities cause things to hit us harder and make us be more cautious. It is a lose-lose situation.”

James Lam’s restaurant, Spicy Shallot, which he co-owns with his wife, Inthira Lam, is situated in Elmhurst in Queens, another area devastated by the virus. He was able to set up outdoor dining with partitions, thanks to a friend who is a contractor. But he says many people in the area aren’t able to do much more than some outdoor tables and chairs, and the neighborhood hasn’t fully recovered from being a virus epicenter. Customers outside the neighborhood are hesitant to visit. Still, the restaurant’s basic setup has been helpful—revenue is up 30 percent.

Some restaurateurs fear that setting up outdoor dining might open themselves up to unwanted scrutiny. Abigail Coover Hume, a board member at Design Advocates, has noticed that enforcement of outdoor dining guidelines has been inconsistent among different neighborhoods. Restaurants in under-resourced neighborhoods are receiving violations that she doesn’t see those in more affluent neighborhoods getting. (Joseph Yacca, the Director of Operations for the Department of Transportation’s Highway Inspections & Quality Assurance unit, refuted this.)

At La Ñapa, Anton has put up a chain-and-post barrier to separate his restaurant from the lengthy line at the UPS store next door and to prevent people from blocking the door of his restaurant. He hasn’t even set up outdoor dining, yet the restaurant has received three violations.

To drum up business, he collaborated with other restaurants in the neighborhood to run a 10 percent discount across the board. Other places are discussing sharing resources such as heat lamps. But the challenges seem greater than what grassroots initiatives can accomplish.

“I haven’t seen anything large-scale that would really alleviate those pressures on a systemic level,” Chen says, referring to the unequal distribution of city resources across neighborhoods, the barriers to capital and funding that restaurateurs without Rolodexes of investors face. “We are cobbling together the resources we can on a case by case basis.”

Anton agrees, fearing that without government funding for small businesses and better unemployment benefits for the general public, small independent restaurants like his, which make up the backbone of the industry, will not be able to survive. And with a slumping economy, he adds, “Even if we have a beautiful, warm, and cozy structure outside, even if we have no COVID, people will not come out and spend.”

“People like me, like my family, this is all we have,” he continues. “We don’t have money behind us, pushing a brand or pushing a book deal or pushing a TV show. We just like working every day and making the money, so we can have a decent life or whatever we can afford.”

Outdoor dining has become more than a way to seat more guests and make more money—it’s become a symbol of systemic inequity long ingrained in the city. And it’s no longer a design solution but a burden in itself.

“Right now, we are not caring about aesthetics,” Banerjea says, “because it is about survival.”

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About NYC's Most Exclusive Italian Restaurant. But Couldn't Get in to Ask

Getting a seat at Rao’s is like buying a time-share. Since 1896 the tiny Italian-American restaurant has been serving up family-style lemon chicken and seafood salad beneath strings of Christmas lights on a corner in East Harlem. But after New York Times food critic Mimi Sheraton gave it a three-star review in 1977, Rao’s enacted a notoriously strict reservation system to preserve its devout community of regulars. Now table assignments are made in weekly, monthly, or annual increments, and only a rare few get inside. Forget being somebody—you need to know somebody to get past co-owner Frank Pellegrino Jr. (His father, Frank Pellegrino Sr., was nicknamed Frankie No for his stalwart ability to turn away celebrities and regular folks alike.) After decades of gossip about what exactly goes on inside those red doors, we sat down with Frank Jr. to set the record straight.

Rao's opened on this corner in East Harlem in 1896 (no, that's not a typo).

Photo by JOHNNY MILLER/Courtesy of Rao's

Just getting a table at Rao’s is tough enough. How does someone manage to get their photo on the wall?
Regulars will bring in someone who is notable and then it’s a matter of, “Hey, send me a picture, sign it, and I’ll put it up on the wall.” People don’t bring in photos as much as they used to, but they do send me electronic photos, and I print them out. We pay homage to the people up on the wall: We very rarely take down anyone’s photo.

Let’s talk menu. Are all of the “family” recipes really from your family?
That’s one of the most beautiful things about the restaurant. Every dish is a family recipe that has been passed on from generation to generation, including the sauce that we sell in the markets. They all come from my Grandmother Paulina, Aunt Anna, and Uncle Vincent, and are recipes that were brought over from Italy. My dad and my aunt collaborated together on pretty much all the staple dishes, and now my chef Dino [Gatto] is involved. The recipes themselves evolve but their origins remain tried and true.

Speaking of the Rao’s jarred sauces, do you ever use them in the restaurant to save time?
We always make the sauce at the restaurant fresh, but I can assure you it’s the same recipe. Of course it’s scaled different, but the mechanics are all the same. That recipe came from my great-grandmother, my aunt Anna, and my dad, and it changes over time. It’s that same human touch—I’ll use the structure of the recipe but put a dash more salt or this much less oregano—and it becomes a rhythm, a routine, second nature.

These saucy meatballs, made from a mix of veal, beef, and pork, are just as iconic as Rao's red doors.

Photo by JOHNNY MILLER/Courtesy of Rao's

Has the menu evolved?
You have to be sensitive to what’s going on in the marketplace and the palates of our guests. Scungilli [sea snails cut into pieces] isn’t a big hit and I’m happy about that because it’s a big pain in the bottom to clean scungilli and put it in our seafood salad. But when I was younger, working as a waiter, if I didn’t put scungilli in the seafood salad I would have cut my hands off.

How much parm do you go through in a week?
In Las Vegas alone (we opened there in 2006) we go through probably a wheel and a half to two wheels every ten days. It’s about 84 pounds a wheel. I go through probably a wheel of parm a month in Los Angeles (opened in 2013), and in New York, almost the same. Of course we use other kinds of cheese too, like Locatelli and Pecorino Romano.

Who gets to pick the music in the restaurant?
We have a jukebox in every restaurant with a wonderful selection of music. Now the younger generation—which is me (and which is not so young anymore)—has expanded the spectrum. I have to honestly say that my favorite jukebox right now is the one in L.A. It’s just dynamite. It covers everything: the Eagles, the Beatles, the Stones.

What about the one at the original NYC location?
Back in the day our jukebox was one of the most notable jukeboxes in the city of New York. It was all Motown, doo-wop, Sinatra, Rat Pack stuff, a lot of the classics, and programmed by a dear friend of my father’s. That jukebox was the catalyst for two albums that my dad created the first was called An Evening at Rao’s, and it was part and parcel of our first cookbook launch in the ’90s. It’s comprised of 17 songs, one of which my father performs. It’s called “The Ham (Le Cabotin).”

Hutong restaurant and bar welcomes you to our New York home at 731 Lexington Avenue. We bring you our contemporary and occasionally fiery Northern Chinese cuisine, dim sum and cocktails, served in an elegant Art Deco room inspired by swinging 1920’s New York and Shanghai.

We are also offering Hutong at Home for all catering and home delivery needs

UPDATE: Starting May 19, 2021, all guests will be required to have either an Excelsior Pass, Vaccine Card, or a negative test within 3 days of reservation. This allows our restaurant to operate at 100% capacity, host private events on a larger scale, and allows our guest and employees to have a maskless dining experience. This will only be in effect for as long as New York City requires it to operate at 100%. We apologize for any inconvenience this might cause.

We look forward to continuing to serving you food that we feel passionate about.

4 thoughts on &ldquo Disney Wish: The Grand Reveal of Main Dining Restaurants &rdquo

The restaurant offering is interesting and probably one of the area with the biggest change. There is the continuation of the “princess-themed” restaurant that we now have on the Classic ships, and I suspect we may see on the Dream class ships after their next major drydock. For future ships/refurbs, I could see an Asian-themed Mulan or Middle-Eastern themed Aladdin restaurant. The Marvel offering is intriguing and I could see a Star Wars themed restaurant in one of the next two ships instead. Slightly sad not to see an “Animator’s Palate” style restaurant but will give 1923 a chance to shine!

Do you think there will be a Cabanas? Or are buffets never going to return post-pandemic?

There is still a lot to be revealed. This was just the beginning.

Very happy to see the inclusion of restaurant �”. I cannot wait to sit down to a meal in such an amazing place filled with the history of the Disney organization. Glad to see that proper due is being given to both of the brothers “who started it all”… Walt and Roy! Thank you to the Imagineers for this inspired tribute.

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The Finest Cuisine at Sea®

From dozens of new flavorful dishes at The Grand Dining Room and Toscana to the addition of internationally-inspired poke bowls at Waves Grill and a vastly expanded Sunday Brunch, this latest collection of OceaniaNEXT enhancements elevates and evolves our culinary program, making certain your experience will be better than ever. The new dishes reflect our chefs’ favorite experiences, from dishes they serve at Sunday family dinners to top emerging cuisines from around the globe that have inspired them. The sweeping new stable of recipes and enhancements showcases the creativity of chefs and the innovative ways they channel their passion into exciting and unique culinary experiences.

OceaniaNEXT Dining Experience Highlights

    • More than two dozen inventive new appetizers and main courses in The Grand Dining Room in addition to an even more elaborate and diverse Sunday Brunch
    • Reimagined Toscana menu with 21 new dishes that couple modern techniques with the traditional heritage of Italian cuisine

    Culinary Masterpieces

    It’s the finest at sea because we select only the best ingredients and the most talented chefs from around the globe. From Castilla-La Mancha saffron to French flour custom-milled to our specifications, our artisanal ingredients echo the dedication poured into every dish. In galleys evoking those in Michelin-starred restaurants, our gifted chefs create absolute culinary masterpieces. Come aboard and savor cuisine renowned as the finest at sea.

    Our Chefs

    Jacques Pépin

    Executive Culinary Director

    As Oceania Cruises&rsquo Executive Culinary Director since 2003, Master Chef Jacques Pépin has long inspired our award-winning culinary program, which is renowned for The Finest Cuisine at Sea®. Master Chef Pépin is an internationally renowned chef, author of 30 cookbooks, and host of 13 PBS television series. He has served as personal chef to three French heads of state, including Charles de Gaulle, and is also the recipient of countless awards, including the American Public Television&rsquos Lifetime Achievement Award and La Légion d&rsquoHonneur, France&rsquos highest civilian honor. In 2016, Master Chef Pépin and his closest family founded the Jacques Pépin Foundation to share Jacques&rsquo passion for cooking and mastery of technique with economically disadvantaged individuals in order to encourage them to seek pathways of success through culinary professionalism. An American Masters film chronicling his life, Jacques Pépin: The Art of Craft, debuted on PBS in May of 2017 and his most recent book, A Grandfather&rsquos Lessons: In the Kitchen with Shorey, features him cooking with his granddaughter and was published in 2017.

    Franck Garanger

    Corporate Executive Chef

    A bright contemporary culinary personality, Franck Garanger draws upon his wealth of experience and rare culinary artistry as he oversees all culinary operations aboard our small, luxurious ships. Franck&rsquos passion for cuisine started many years ago in his father&rsquos pâtisserie-boulangerie in the Loire Valley, where the discipline and nature of cooking inspired his career at a very early age. He began as an apprentice at the Michelin-starred restaurant Le Vert d&rsquoEau in Angers with French Master Chef Jean-François Piers and his experience continued to grow during tenures at many distinguished restaurants such as Hôtel de Paris Monte-Carlo and the Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc in Antibes. He also has worked with such culinary greats as Paul Bocuse, Alain Passard and Thierry Marx. Since 2003, Franck has been sharing in our passion for The Finest Cuisine at Sea®. His culinary vision reflects a unique personal style that unites the global influences that have inspired him during his many years of travel. In 2008, Franck was awarded membership as a French Master Chef in the prestigious Maîtres Cuisiniers de France.

    Executive Chefs

    Our distinguished chefs are culled from the world&rsquos best restaurants, such as Four Seasons Hotel Milano and Relais & Châteaux, and have worked under culinary legends like Paul Bocuse and Alain Passard. These culinary maestros bring their high-caliber expertise to our galleys and are the true masters behind the magic of our cuisine. Every recipe has been proudly crafted by our chefs, and each dish is a study in culinary technique and tradition.

    Frederic Camonin

    Executive Chef

    Born in France, Executive Chef Frederic Camonin has been surrounded by cooking for as long as he can remember. Embracing his family&rsquos experience as catering business owners, he attended a culinary school in Verdun. After graduating, Chef Frederic began to work in French restaurants and brasseries as well as for catering businesses. After seven years, he felt the sea calling and began working for cruise lines. Chef Frederic has now been traveling the world as a chef at sea for more than 20 years and is proud to be part of the Oceania Cruises family. He is very passionate about the innovative culinary vision that inspires The Finest Cuisine at Sea® and the many adventures that have yet to come.

    Michal Antoni Jagielski

    Executive Chef

    Born in Torun, Poland, Chef Michal had an early passion for cooking and attended the culinary academy in his hometown at age 15. He later joined the Accor Hotels Group to hone his craft, eventually moving to England where he ran his own restaurant. After five years in England, Michal began his adventure on cruise ships, working for Royal Caribbean and Holland America Line for several years. He joined Oceania Cruises in 2016. After five years in England, Chef Michal began his adventure on cruise ships and once was part of a start-up team for one of the biggest ships in the world. He happily joined Oceania Cruises in 2016 and some of his favorite ports of call are in New Zealand. When Chef Michal is not on board creating The Finest Cuisine at Sea®, he loves spending time with his son and traveling in Asia.

    Viktor Malek

    Executive Chef

    Hailing from Augsburg, Germany, Executive Chef Viktor Malek has nearly 30 years of culinary experience. He received his national diploma as a professional chef in 1989 at a leading five-star hotel, Steigenberger Drei Mohren. Chef Viktor worked his way up through several prestigious international establishments, such as Austria&rsquos Interalpen-Hotel Tyrol, the Taj Hotel at Denis Island in the Seychelles and CTICC in Cape Town. Along the way, he deepened his knowledge of various culinary cultures as well as South Africa&rsquos cuisine and wine regions and perfected his avant-garde techniques. Most recently, Chef Viktor developed and led the galley teams for Seabourn Cruise Line and The World before joining Oceania Cruises in 2018.

    Farid Oudir

    Executive Chef

    Hailing from Le Mans, France, Senior Executive Chef Farid began working in a French restaurant in Germany at age 17. Following some time in England, he returned to France where he gained skills as a renowned specialist in the art of making foie gras. After bringing his talents to restaurants in France and Luxembourg, the sea beckoned to him and Chef Farid worked as a chef at sea on several ships before returning shoreside to raise his newborn son. The allure of the ocean drew him back in 2007 when he joined Oceania Cruises. When not on board, Chef Farid spends time visiting family in Southern California as well as enjoying time with his son in the village of Cordemais in the Brittany countryside.

    Raffaele Saia

    Executive Chef

    Born in Ancona, Italy, Chef Raffaele Saia developed a love for cooking at his grandmother&rsquos restaurant in his hometown. Recognizing his passion, he joined a culinary school and began working at a local hotel kitchen. After graduating, Chef Raffaele joined the culinary team at one of Ancona&rsquos best restaurants, meeting several great Italian chefs during his tenure. In 2002, he moved to London to expand his culinary horizons in one of the great food cities of the world. There, Chef Raffaele professionally matured by working as Head Chef at several restaurants. In 2010, he combined his three loves &ndash travel, cooking and the sea &ndash when he joined Oceania Cruises. Since then, he has cooked on every ship, happily bringing you The Finest Cuisine at Sea®.

    Mario Santoro

    Executive Chef

    Born in Genoa, Italy to a Sicilian family, Executive Chef Mario Santoro followed in his father&rsquos footsteps to study at the Culinary Institute in Sicily. After graduating, he refined his culinary talents by specializing in fish and meat, gaining valuable experience from working at several top restaurants. Chef Mario then decided to travel the world to gain skills and knowledge to further advance in his culinary career. He first worked in Germany and then later gained invaluable experience at a two-star Michelin restaurant in London, eventually becoming the owner of an Italian restaurant in England for nine years. With this breadth of expertise, Chef Mario joined the Oceania Cruises culinary team to bring you cuisine renowned as the finest at sea.

    Ronald Smith

    Executive Chef

    Born in Discovery Bay, Jamaica, Executive Chef Ronald Smith began his culinary arts apprenticeship upon graduating high school and soon after attended the Culinary Arts Institute of Jamaica. Chef Ronald later worked at several hotels in Jamaica and won multiple culinary arts carving competitions. He began his career at sea in 1999 and joined Oceania Cruises in 2004. Chef Ronald is very proud to a part of the Oceania Cruises family, which is filled with passion and creativity. He considers it a great milestone in his career to be able to work with the best chefs in the industry. During his vacations, Chef Ronald also coordinates culinary seminars and does lectures to motivate high school students interested in culinary careers.

    Laurent Trias

    Executive Chef

    Born in Bordeaux, France, Senior Executive Chef Laurent Trias has been fascinated by cooking ever since he was a young boy. He began working at a cousin&rsquos pastry shop at the age of 10 and later during the summer season at a restaurant where his gastronomic passions were confirmed. Chef Laurent eventually attended culinary school in Talence near Bordeaux, before gaining experience in the Alps, Biarritz and Bordeaux. He opened his first restaurant in southern France in 1995 before eventually forging a life at sea and working for Celebrity Cruises and Princess Cruises. Chef Laurent joined Oceania Cruises in 2010 and has been delighted to be working with the culinary team since then to bring you The Finest Cuisine at Sea®.


    Executive Chef

    Born in the Loire Valley, Senior Executive Chef Frederic Godineau joined the culinary world at age 14, when he completed a two-year apprenticeship program in France. He continued his training in England and eventually Portugal, where he discovered not only new cooking styles but also that his love for cooking opened the door to many new cultures. Chef Frederic sees each new dish he creates as an opportunity to immerse himself in a new culture. He began climbing the ranks of the restaurant world at exclusive Michelin-starred restaurants in Normandy and Paris. Chef Frederic later started working for a cruise line in 1999 and fell in love with cooking at sea. He joined Oceania Cruises in 2015.

    The Culinary Center Team

    Our Chef Instructors at The Culinary Center have a genuine passion for experiencing the world&rsquos cultures through the lens of food and cooking &ndash and for sharing it with you in destinations around the globe. Whether you spend a day at sea discovering the secrets of fish cookery or join one of our popular Culinary Discovery Tours&trade ashore, our team at The Culinary Center is here to offer expert instruction while bringing the local culture to life.

    Kathryn Kelly

    Executive Chef

    Celebrating nearly a decade with Oceania Cruises, Chef Kelly&rsquos passion for adult learning has been the driving force behind The Culinary Center since first developing it with Oceania Cruises co-founder Bob Binder in 2011. While overseeing a faculty of dedicated Chef Instructors, she is the chief architect of more than 100 unique culinary classes as well as our popular Culinary Discovery Tours&trade, which are immersive chef-led excursions offered in more than 40 destinations worldwide.

    In close collaboration with Oceania Cruises&rsquo Executive Culinary Director, Master Chef Jacques Pépin, Chef Kelly ensures that the first hands-on cooking school at sea balances enrichment and culinary technique with the joy of learning about the world through food and wine.

    Chef Kelly resides on Amelia Island and is an avid golfer, proud grandmother and heritage seed gardener. Her philanthropic work centers on chef-driven disaster relief, endangered wildlife and seafood conservation, and training chefs to become classroom educators and instructors.

    Noelle Barille

    An intrepid traveler, Chef Barille brings her extensive knowledge of world cuisines to the kitchen. She is one of The Culinary Center&rsquos founding faculty members and has left a discernible imprint on our popular cooking classes and Culinary Discovery Tours&trade. Chef Barille is a graduate of The Culinary Institute of America and is certified by the American Culinary Federation at the ProChef II level. She has cultivated her passion for sustainable cooking on the farms of Sicily, in the kitchens of Napa Valley and amongst the pasta masters of Rome. When she is not on board, Chef Barille spends time cooking for her extensive &ndash and very fortunate &ndash Italian family in her hometown of Madison, Wisconsin.

    Karlis Celms

    Currently residing in Riga, Latvia, Chef Celms came to The Culinary Center after hosting tours for our guests at this capital city&rsquos famed Central Market. As the chef and owner of Latvia&rsquos first food truck, Chef Celms travels and instructs with Oceania Cruises, sharing his quest for simple and honest peasant cuisines worldwide. A charismatic and enthusiastic teacher, Chef Celms credits his family&rsquos Swedish and Latvian roots as the genesis of his passion for quality ingredients and authentic, uncomplicated food. Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, Chef Celms studied at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco.

    Kelli Evans

    Chef Evans&rsquo teaching style is informed by a fascinatingly diverse culinary background. Most recently, she created over 2,500 recipes for print, website and cookbooks as a food editor for Saveur magazine. She is the featured instructor in a series of technique videos for Saveur, which she also produced. Chef Evans was the Executive Chef for a catering enterprise in New York where her team serviced the productions of &ldquoBoardwalk Empire,&rdquo &ldquoNurse Jackie,&rdquo &ldquoSesame Street,&rdquo &ldquoBlue Bloods&rdquo and &ldquo30 Rock.&rdquo Chef Evans has also been a food stylist and is a graduate of the French Culinary Institute in New York.

    Stephanie Hersh

    Few chefs display both broad culinary skills and also proficiency in pastries and baking, but Chef Hersh brings a wide spectrum of talents to her teaching. A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America and member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals and the American Institute of Wine and Food, Chef Hersh is an acknowledged expert in gastronomy. Chef Hersh may be most well known as the Executive Personal Assistant to Julia Child from 1989 until her death in 2004. Chef Jacques Pépin fondly remembers her role in the production of the &ldquoJulia and Jacques&rdquo PBS series &ndash about which Chef Hersh has many great stories! A respected culinary instructor in her present home of New Zealand, Chef Hersh shares her unique talents with our guests with humor, passion and grace.

    Sarah Labensky

    Chef Labensky is co-author of over a dozen culinary reference books, including the bestselling On Cooking and On Baking published by Pearson. She has taught aspiring chefs and culinary professionals for more than 20 years, including the past five years at an international program in South Korea. As an instructor, Chef Labensky emphasizes the how and why of cooking techniques along with the flavors and fun of exploring new tastes and diverse cuisines. She loves when students have an &ldquoah-ha&rdquo moment from a new technique or flavor experience.

    Linda Miller

    After decades as a successful attorney, Chef Miller decided to make a career change and enrolled in the Culinary Institute of America, graduating with a passion for teaching adult home cooks. She has fascinated our guests with her compelling career story but more importantly with her enthusiastic teaching style. When not on board, Chef Miller resides in the Washington, D.C., area. An avid culinary traveler, Chef Miller recently returned from Asia, where she studied regional cuisines while working at the Singapore campus of the Culinary Institute of America.

    David Shalleck

    Author of Mediterranean Summer, the multi-lingual Chef Shalleck is our resident expert on Mediterranean cuisine, having lived and traveled the Mediterranean extensively as the private chef to a titled family aboard their yacht. Following his work at sea, Chef Shalleck competed on Chef Cat Cora&rsquos team in the &ldquoIron Chef &rdquo series where he caught the bug for culinary television. He produced the series &ldquoEssential Pépin&rdquo as well as &ldquoMade in Spain&rdquo with José Andrés and &ldquoChef &rsquos Story.&rdquo Chef Shalleck&rsquos classes are infused with his expertise and inspiration, both deeply rooted in the Mediterranean.

    John Stephano

    A native of Philadelphia, Chef Stephano recalls sitting on a kitchen stool watching his mother and grandmother as his earliest inspiration to spend his life in the kitchen. An honors graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, he is true to his Italian and Irish roots as a passionate advocate for cooking at home. Fuel by his extensive travels, Chef Stephano enjoys cooking for friends and family, bringing the world to the table in a search for joy and authenticity. An enthusiastic teacher, he creates a kitchen classroom that is an ever-changing and memorable culinary destination.

    Culinary Experiences

    The Grand Dining Room

    An Elegant Setting

    The Grand Dining Room is a study in stateliness, a tribute to the spirit of Europe’s marquee five-star hotel restaurants that inspired its dignified yet convivial ambiance. Handsomely decorated in rich woods, designer tapestry fabrics and oversized armchairs, the expansive dining area exudes classic splendor. This signature dining experience has always offered a bevy of delicious Continental dishes, and now a fresh and new array of options brings you even more exciting choices, as well as an incredible spectrum of global flavors and an all new Executive Chef’s Tasting Menu. As variety is essential to your satisfaction, menus change daily with an expansive choice of at least 10 appetizers, soups and salads and 10 dinner entrées, along with healthy options such as Aquamar Vitality Cuisine, gourmet vegetarian selections and the most extensive array of plant-based dishes at sea.

    Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. No reservations required.

    Specialty Restaurants

    Fine Dining

    Boldly claiming to serve cuisine renowned as the finest at sea might seem to be an overstatement. But we wouldn't make such an immodest assertion if not for the tremendous contribution of the legendary Master Chef Jacques Pépin. As our Executive Culinary Director, he inspires our chefs to perform feats of gastronomic wizardry. Memorable dining begins with open-seating, as it allows you to dine when you are ready and with whomever you choose.


    Authentic Italian

    Toscana means Tuscan, and just as Tuscan cuisine evolved from rich family traditions, many of our recipes originated with the mothers and grandmothers of our own Italian culinary staff. Presented on elegant, custom-designed Versace china, masterfully prepared dishes exemplify the essence of Tuscany and celebrate Italy&rsquos culinary passion.

    Perhaps the evening begins with the octopus carpaccio with Champagne vinaigrette or the artichoke and parmesan cheese timbale with black truffle sauce. Classic dishes from other regions of Northern Italy are featured as well, such as the minestrone alla Genovese, lasagna alforno alla Bolognese and osso buco alla Milanese.

    Open for dinner on board Marina, Riviera, Regatta, Insignia & Nautica. Reservations required.

    Polo Grill

    A Classic Steakhouse

    Polo Grill embodies all the elements of a classic steakhouse, expressing them with timeless reverence. Mindful of tradition, the decor features crisp, white linen tablecloths, dark wood furnishings and supple, high-back, burgundy leather chairs.

    Each course stands as the very definition of time-honored favorites, most notably the beef dishes, all of which are certified Black Angus USDA Prime and dry aged to enhance tenderness and flavor. Succulent seafood dishes such as grilled swordfish and whole Maine lobster gratinée are also classics in their own right. The classic Caesar salad, too, is prepared according to tradition, tableside and with gusto.

    Open for dinner on board Marina, Riviera, Regatta, Insignia & Nautica. Reservations required.


    A Passion for French Cuisine

    Exquisitely decorated with heirloom antiques, pickled wood furnishings and art from Jacques Pépin&rsquos personal collection, Jacques was modeled after a Parisian bistro. Comfortable and eclectic, the ambiance is pure French, as is the cosmopolitan yet wonderfully embraceable cuisine.

    Luscious aromas waft from the gleaming show rotisserie, where chicken, duck, pork, beef and veal roasts slowly turn. Each dish is a classic, ingeniously reinterpreted by Master Chef Pépin. Rotisserie-roasted chicken falls off the bone, bursting with flavor, while his sea bass filet pairs exquisitely with beurre blanc.

    Open for dinner on board Marina & Riviera. Reservations required.

    Red Ginger

    Bold Asian Cuisine

    With a nod to feng shui, Red Ginger radiates harmony and tranquility. The interior simply glows with ebony woods, a soothing waterfall wall and striking, modern Asian artworks. To complement the stunning decor, Red Ginger&rsquos chefs have created contemporary interpretations of Asian classics.

    Begin with a salad of spicy roast duck and watermelon with cashews, mint and Thai basil. Savor a Malaysian beef penaeng with coconut rice and paratha roti. Or try Thai vegetable curry with sweet potatoes, aubergine, mushrooms and basil in green curry sauce. In Red Ginger, the gustatory pleasures are as striking as the visual ones.

    Open for dinner on board Marina, Riviera & Sirena. Reservations required.

    Tuscan Steak

    Inspire by Polo Grill & Toscana

    Tuscan Steak, our signature specialty restaurant on board Sirena, exudes the warmth and Italian flair of Toscana while preserving the classic appeal of Polo Grill. Featuring glossy wood paneling with platinum and silver accents, the elegantly appointed interior of Tuscan Steak aptly reflects its modern take on the traditional steakhouse.

    The innovative and diverse menu features the best of both worlds, so you can savor filet mignon and our signature Tuscan porterhouse cooked to perfection, along with rustic Italian favorites such as hand-rolled potato gnocchi. Seafood lovers will delight in savory dishes such as steamed whole Maine lobster and linguine cioppino.

    Open for Dinner on board Sirena. Reservations required.

    Terrace Café

    Informal Dining

    Informal and carefree, the Terrace Café is wonderfully inviting any time of day. During breakfast, the room is infused with natural sunlight from the floor-to-ceiling windows, stimulating the appetite for the sumptuous selections.

    Come lunch, the expansive menu of international-inspired dishes changes entirely, complemented by flavorful roasted and rotisserie meats and the magic of the pizzeria&rsquos oven. Dine inside or alfresco at one of the shaded teak tables on the terrace.

    During the evenings, the cuisine takes on a more sophisticated flair, with lobster tails, chops and fresh fish prepared to order, and freshly made hand-cut sushi and sashimi. In addition, a diverse selection of bold and flavorful plant-based dishes are available at breakfast, lunch and dinner.

    Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. No reservations required.

    Waves Grill

    Alfresco Dining

    Sometimes, the ultimate luxury is casual dining on all-American favorites, a laid-back style Waves Grill epitomizes. Located in a spacious, shaded area steps from the swimming pool, Waves Grill offers an extensive and mouthwatering menu.

    Watch the chefs grill gourmet burgers, succulent seafood and sandwiches to order in the open galley, accompanying them with sides like fresh salads, coleslaw and crispy, hand-cut fries. Then try a decadent dessert such as a homemade sorbet, a made-to-order hot fudge sundae or a thick, hand-dipped milkshake.

    Raw Juice & Smoothie Bar
    The only cold-pressed Raw Juice & Smoothie Bar at sea serves up tasty raw juices, vegan smoothies and energy bowls at Waves Grill during breakfast on board Marina and Riviera.

    Open for lunch and afternoon dining only. No reservations required. Raw juices and energy bowls available on board Marina & Riviera only.


    Afternoon Tea

    Teatime is a celebratory daily event at four o&rsquoclock. As a classical string quartet plays softly, our staff present bountiful four-tiered pastry carts filled with freshly made finger sandwiches, petits fours, scones and sinful desserts. Of course, a selection of traditional and artisanal teas is the centerpiece of this splendid afternoon pastime.

    Daily at 4pm. No reservations required.


    Specialty Coffee

    This delightful coffee bar is a favorite stop for java lovers. Enjoy complimentary illy illy ® espressos, cappuccinos and lattes prepared by our master baristas, as well as the delicious pastries, finger sandwiches and homemade biscotti that draw so many to Baristas throughout the day.

    Open daily until early evening. No reservations required.

    La Reserve by Wine Spectator

    Perfect Pairings

    The most inspired achievements are born of legendary partnerships, and at Oceania Cruises we are proud of our brilliant union with Wine Spectator, the foremost magazine for wine connoisseurs, and our exceptional relationship with France&rsquos premier Champagne house, Moët & Chandon. Along with these illustrious partners, we are pleased to present a variety of differing but equally extraordinary pairing dinners. Developed with Moët & Chandon&rsquos Executive Chef Marco Fadiga, the six-course Dom Pérignon Experience is a spirited Champagne pairing dinner blending playful Dom Pérignon vintages and refreshing gastronomic surprises such as Sakura Tea &ldquoGeisha Flower&rdquo Ice Cream and Lemon Caviar. The seven-course La Cuisine Bourgeoise wine pairing dinner celebrates the rituals of the table and links masterfully curated wine selections with dishes such as Filet de Boeuf Rôti Richelieu, one of many recipes Oceania Cruises&rsquo Master Chef and Executive Culinary Director Jacques Pépin has enjoyed since his childhood. Coupled with wine seminars and vintage tastings, La Reserve by Wine Spectator is an unabashedly glorious celebration of the pleasures of the palate.

    The Dom Pérignon Experience

    Champagne defines the most jubilant moments of our lives and in a magnificent stroke of brilliance, we have partnered with France&rsquos esteemed Moët & Chandon to create the Dom Pérignon Experience at La Reserve by Wine Spectator, an exuberant six-course gustatory indulgence that pairs each course with a special Dom Pérignon vintage. Champagne is effortlessly matched with dishes which are thoughtfully crafted to bring out the nuances of the grapes and the ratio of the blend, playing off every aspect from subtle, effervescent nose to lively, satisfying finish. From Brittany Blue Lobster in Yellow Curry Broth with Coco Foam to Sashimi-Style Seared Wagyu Beef with Sautéed Arugula, Blood Orange-Soya Jus and Caviar Perlita, each beguiling bite is a celebration of the finer things in life. While the Dom Pérignon Experience is the perfect complement to any joyous occasion, it transcends even this lofty role. In true French spirit, it becomes the culinary manifestation of joie de vivre.

    Open for dinner on board Marina & Riviera only. Reservations required. Wine or Champagne experience surcharge applies.

    In 'Solo,' Chef Anita Lo Celebrates The Art Of Cooking For One

    From 200 to 2017, Anita Lo ran New York City restaurant Annisa, which held a Michelin star for nine consecutive years.

    Cooking is about community. But it can also be about solitude.

    That's where chef Anita Lo's latest cookbook, Solo: A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One, comes in.

    "Food is culture, food is identity. So it's reaffirming to cook the things that either you grew up with or the things that you love," Lo says — whether it's for your whole family or just yourself.

    After working at restaurants such as Bouley, Maxim's in New York and Chanterelle, Lo ran her own restaurant, the Michelin-starred Annisa in the heart of Manhattan's Greenwich Village, from 2000 until last year. She has appeared on Top Chef Masters, Iron Chef America and Chopped. And in 2015, she became the first female guest chef to cook at the White House.

    As Thanksgiving approaches, Lo speaks with All Things Considered host Ailsa Chang about the art and joy of cooking for one.

    The Two-Way

    For China's President, An Evening Of Lobster And Lamb From Chef Anita Lo

    This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

    I love how you started this book: "I've been dumped almost as many times as I've been in relationships — and I can count those on less than two hands. Spread over my 50-year life span, that's a lot of solo meals." That's how you mastered cooking for one, right?

    That might have been an overstatement, but food has saved me in many instances like that. There was one time where I was dumped by a girlfriend of . two years. I was devastated, really devastated, and my parents came to town and they took me out to dinner and we went for my first kaiseki meal, which is a fancy Japanese meal of many, many courses, and it is very seasonal. And I had all of these things that I've never had before, and I was so devastated at that point, but in that meal, I was like, "Oh my God, this is so cool." And I just felt rejuvenated.

    A Modern Cookbook for a Party of One

    Buy Featured Book

    Your purchase helps support NPR programming. How?

    For people who want to wallow in their loneliness, there are recipes like "A Single Broken Egg On A Bed Of Torn, Wilted, Bitter Greens With Blue Cheese." This is like a sadness plate! When did you come up with this recipe? After a breakup?

    I probably came up with this recipe for this book, but I had many of those types of recipes over the years at Annisa for Valentine's Day. Actually, I always thought Valentine's Day was a cheesy, Hallmark holiday. But you always have to have a special menu. So I always had plenty of things with hearts, passionfruit and stuff like that. But then I always wanted to have a dish for the lonely person, like a "monkfish . "

    A celibate monkfish?

    Yeah, with extra virgin olive oil.

    What is it about cooking for one's self that's such a hard mountain to climb? Is it only the trouble or is there some deeper psychological block?

    I think it is a deeper psychological block. Everyone says, "Why would I go through all of that trouble for just myself?" Why not? You can't give to other people and share with other people if you're not taking care of yourself.

    What is a good Thanksgiving recipe for one?

    In my book there is a broiled squab with roasted carrots and carrot top zhoug, spicy condiment from the Middle East. What's great about this recipe is that it is a whole bird, a little bird, it's very fall, it's root vegetables and dark meat. And squab is sort of celebratory. It's not hard to do, but it's a little more "chefie."

    A Thanksgiving Feast For The Ears And Eyes

    Cooking For One: A Privilege, Not A Chore

    Are you allowed to gnaw on a squab drumstick?

    Oh yeah, I think you're supposed to, actually.

    Connor Donevan and Emily Kopp produced and edited this interview for broadcast. Leslie Ovalle adapted it for the Web.

    Recipe: Broiled Squab with Roasted Carrots and Carrot Top Zhoug

    You people eat too much chicken. I know this because every cookbook editor I've ever met asks for more chicken recipes. This one did! Overcrowded chicken factories? Hormone-pumped superbirds? Your fault! Okay, maybe it is our collective responsibility as a culture. And I know, guilting people into trying a new food rarely works — but squab is rich and delicious and has been eaten since ancient times in places all over the planet. That many people can't be wrong. While it's a little expensive and harder to find, making it at home costs a fraction of what you'd be charged at any fine-dining establishment, and it's available at the click of a button online if you can't find it at a local specialty grocery store. This recipe celebrates where this bird perhaps was first eaten — in the Middle East. And it makes use of carrots and their tops in the spicy Middle Eastern condiment, zhoug or zhug, depending on where in the Middle East you might find yourself. Of course, if you must, you can substitute a Cornish hen, which is really just a little chicken, and cook it for a bit longer, about 10-12 minutes, depending on the size.

    1 squab, semi-boneless, about 8 ounces

    1 bunch baby carrots (or 1/2 bunch adolescent ones), tops removed but leaving 1/4 of green attached to the carrots

    1 large pinch caraway seeds

    1 bunch baby carrot tops, washed (substitute parsley for the tops if your carrots didn't come with them)

    2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

    1 tablespoon chopped jalapeño (or to taste: if your jalapeño has no heat, you can try a serrano, or add a little cayenne)

    1 large pinch ground cumin

    1 large pinch ground coriander

    Preheat your oven or toaster oven to 350 degrees F. Using scissors, cut through the back of the squab between the legs and wings and lay flat on a plate. Pat the bird dry with a paper towel and rub in the V clove garlic, cumin, lemon juice, and olive oil. Allow to marinate at room temperature while you prepare the other ingredients.

    Toss the carrots with ample olive oil, then season with salt and pepper and bake on a small tray until browned and soft, about 20 minutes. Sprinkle the caraway seeds over the top for the last 5 minutes of cooking.

    Meanwhile, make the zhoug: Place 1/3 cup of the washed carrot tops, roughly chopped, into the container that your hand blender came with, along with the cilantro, jalapeño, garlic, cumin, coriander, and olive oil and puree with the hand blender until smooth. Add a tablespoon of water to the mix if needed to get the blades going. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

    When carrots are done, keep warm in tin foil, or on top of the toaster or oven while you broil the squab. Turn the oven to broil and season the squab on both sides with salt and pepper, leaving any excess marinade on the plate. Place squab on a tray, skin side up, and broil, 4 inches from the heat source, until skin is browned and crisp and meat is medium rare, about 6 minutes. (Squab, unlike mass-produced chicken, is safe and better served medium rare.) Serve with the carrot top zhoug, carrots, and some warm pita, or Chickpeas in Tomato.

    Excerpted from SOLO by Anita Lo. Copyright (c) 2018 by Anita Lo. Excerpted by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

    "More from Lidia Celebrates America

    For past Lidia specials, extra video and recipes, and more about acclaimed chef and food ambassador Lidia Bastianich, visit Lidia Celebrates America.

    More from Eating In with Lidia

    What to expect at Justin Timberlake and Sam Fox's supper club

    Justin Timberlake performs during the 2018 iHeartRadio Music Festival at T-Mobile Arena on September 22, 2018, in Las Vegas. (Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

    The First Level, billed as having "an elevated Honky Tonk vibe," will feature live music seven nights a week.

    The Honorary Member is an intimate 50-person second-level cocktail lounge, serving cocktails and small shared bites.

    The final level has been touted as "an iconic, 400-seat, dapper-as-hell Supper Club designed to deliver an unforgettable dining and drinking experience where live music performances fill the room with soul, and dinner should last an entire evening."

    There's also a commanding view of the city from the club's posh rooftop terrace, where lush greenery and outdoor fireplaces were designed with midnight cocktails in mind.

    A-Z ALPHABET DATING: Fun Date Ideas from A-Z

    For alphabet dating, some people go in order from A to Z, but we’re going to give ourselves the freedom to go randomly.

    We came up with a ton of ideas thanks the Scrabble Dictionary, and it only took me two entire days to read through every word in existence. Now I will dominate at Scrabble!

    We broke them down into activities plus some places to visit since we focus our blog on travel. If you can’t travel there, you can also have a themed night at home.

    The examples are all open to interpretation. For example, burgers can be going out to compare your city’s best burgers or staying in and making your own burgers or simply eating your favorite burgers.

    Activities: Abroad, Abseil, Acrobatic Classes, Acting Classes, Aerobics, Agate Hunting, Airboat, Airplane, Airport, Airstream, and Aliens (Area 51 Road Trip). Alpine, Amazon Wishlist, Amusement Park, Animals, Anime, Aquarium, Arcade, Arctic Cruise, Aroma Therapy, Art Gallery, Astrology, Astronomy, Auction, Audio Book. Author Talk or Signing, Auto Race, Aurora, Autobiography, and Aviation.

    Places: Acadia NP, Alaska, Albuquerque, Amsterdam, Anaheim, Arches NP, Argentina, Arizona, Aspen, Athens, Atlanta, Austin, Australia, and Austria.

    Activities: Baby Names, Backpacking, Bagels, Bakery, Bake, Ballet, Balloon Ride, Bamboo Forest, Banana Boat, Band, Bar Crawl, and Barista. Barre Class, Basalt Columns, Baseball, Basketball, Bat Flight, Battlefield, Bazaar, BBQ, Bed and Breakfast, Belly Dance, Bender, and Benefit. Berry Pick, Bike, Binge, Bingo, Birding, Bistro, Blimp Ride, Blog, Board Games, Boat Ride, Bodega, Bonfire, Books, and Bookstore. Boonies, Botanical Garden, Bouldering, Bourbon Trail, Bowling, Boxing, Brail – Teach Yourself, Brasserie, Breakfast, Brew Your Own Beer, (Boozey) Brunch, Bubble Bath, Bubbly, Bumper Cars, Bungee Jump, Burgers, Burlesque, Burritos, Busk, and Buskers.

    Places: Badlands NP, Bahamas, Bali, Baltimore, Bangkok, Barcelona, Beijing, Belgium, Berlin, Big Bend NP, Black Canyon of the Gunnison NP, Boston, Boulder, Brazil, Bryce Canyon NP, Budapest, Buenos Aires, and Burbank.

    Our Top 3: Choose Your Own Adventure, Comedy Club, Crabbing

    Activities: Cabaret, Cafe, Cake, Camel Ride, Camera, Camp, Campervan, Candle Making, Candlelit Dinner, Candy, Canning, Canoe, Canvas, Car, Cards, Carnival, Carousel. Cartoons, Casino, Castle, Casual, Cat Cafe, Cave, Cellar, Cellist, Cemetery, Champagne, Cheap, Cheese, Cheesy, Chef, Chess, Chill, Chopped, Chopper. Christmas Lights, Cigar Bar, Cinema, Circus, Clamming, Classes, Classic Films, Climb, Cloudgazing, Club, Cocktails, Coffee. (Date Like You Were in) College, Color, Concert, Cooking Class, Cook a New Recipe, Corn Maze, Cottage, Couch Potato, Coupon, Cozy, Crafts, Create, Crepes, Cricket, Crossfit, Crossword Puzzle, Cruise, Cuddle, Culture, Cupcakes, and Cycling.

    Places: Cairo, California, Cambodia, Canada (Calgary), Canyonlands NP, Cape Town, Capitol Reef NP, Carlsbad Caverns NP, Central Park, Channel Islands NP, Charleston, Chattanooga, Chicago, Chile, China, Christchurch, Colombia, Columbia SC, Colorado, Congaree NP, Connecticut, Copenhagen, Costa Rica, Crater Lake NP, Croatia, Cuba, Cuzco, and Czech Republic.

    Watch the video: Νέα Υόρκη 13-4-2019 Στην επίσημη δεξίωση της Ομογένειας στο HILTON παραμονή της μεγάλης Παρέλασης.