So in which city would you find the world’s largest restaurant? Definitely a useful bit of trivia for a pub quiz, but unless you knew the answer it’s unlikely you would ever guess. So go on – take a guess.
No, no,no, and no again, and for those who say Bangkok, that’s wrong too, although before May 2008 you would have been right since it has a restaurant that seats 5000 eaters at one sitting.
The answer is Damascus. And the number of diners that can be accommodated at one time? A whopping great 6,014!
Bawabet Dimashq cost some US$40 million to build and at peak service times employs 1800 staff members. Built on the road to Damascus Airport it serves 6 types of cuisine: Syrian, Iranian, Indian, Chinese, European and other Middle Eastern, in different areas within the restaurant, and with no alcohol served.
What many people feared when they heard of the project was that BawabetDimashqwould be little more than an out-size food factory, firing out the dishes with not much finesse and no attention to detail, a bit like a giant industrial canteen. However the brains behind the idea – MuhannadSamman – has succeeded in maintaining an intimacy and quality expected of any reputable restaurant. Rather than just one big food hangar with long tables and customers being rushed through, this place is laid out with fountains and galleries and replica roman ruins, an tasteful oasis, even if it smacks a little bit of LasVegas.
And can you imagine washing all those dishes?