Friday 3 November 2006

Oman: The Chedi

After a lazy morning, we tried to find a bird sanctuary located a few kilometres south of Azaibah, around a sewage works. The entire area is now a building site for a major new road and we were unable to enter the heavily vegetated area, despite an invitation from a brightly-coloured bee-eater perched on a fence. We abandoned our search for another day.

In the evening we dined at the Chedi restaurant. The approach to the Chedi hotel suggests they may have run out of money after completing the elegant hotel building. The minimalist design of the restaurant includes four themed kitchens with glass windows so that food preparation is open to public display. The clean lines of the black and white décor unfortunately drew one’s eyes towards the most hideous cluster of chandeliers above our table. What were they thinking? The elegant lighting in one of the party rooms proved that the chandeliers were clearly not the architect’s idea.

The staff served cold flannels and sparkling water with unnecessary ceremony before the over-sized starters. The main courses varied from Mrs M’s ‘fantastic’ spiny turbot to Simon’s ‘ok’ lamb tagine served in a small chimney pot with a bucket of couscous. After dessert, we toured the splendid pool and courtyard areas before I walked into a door.

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