Let’s be honest. There is only so much banana bread, sourdough starter and dalgona coffee one person can handle in a lifetime.
It has been a long three months but things are finally starting to open up. As part of its four phase plan, to return us to some sense of normality, restaurants will be able to open on 1 July with heavy restrictions.
I’ve spent a lot of time speaking to all of the big players, and some small businesses about their plans. What is clear is that a lot remains up in the air – it’s not as easy as flipping a switch and many new measures need to be in place. Also, several operators, especially those in shopping malls, told me they need new permissions and also need to look at costs such as rent. This quick list includes confirmed openings from 1 July – but I will continually update this here in this post below and on my Instagram.
You can expect that most of the big five star hotels will have at least one or two outlets open from 1 July. Some are still working out which ones and of course there are inspections to pass! Keep a watch for the fast casual restaurants in the malls as well. My best advice is to call ahead and confirm. I also advise patience — it takes a lot to get back on the horse again after four months in mothballs.
We have some clarity on new rules for dining out:
Hey foodies some clarity on rules for dining out come 1 July:
- There will be two hour dining slots
- Restaurants will operate at 50 percent capacity
- A maximum of 5 per table
- kids will be allowed but counted in capacity
- masks and EHTERAZ required on entry
- masks not required at tables but if you move around (eg to go to toilet) must be worn
- reservations are essential
- Mall restaurants will remain closed for dine-in
- No buffets – table service only
So, time to put away the sweat pants and turn off the Zoom, here we go:
DND 1-3 July – I will be busy. The OG of big night out places will be opening its doors come July and I for one couldn’t be happier. I will be the one eating all the tiny salmon tacos. Watch out for their new brunch concept to launch 3 July (details to come).
The Four Seasons Doha took a hit when it, freshly renovated and re-opened, had to close most of its outlets due to COVID-19 restrictions. Elements opened for takeaway and delivery during Ramadan and after which gave us a taste but it will be one of their first to re-open on 1 July, bringing with it that bit if Four Seasons flair.
The very underrated Thai restaurant at the Westin Doha is worth putting on your list if you are craving some SE Asian flavors. Expect well executed royal Thai dishes and don’t leave without ordering the papaya salad.
The quirky breakfast-only restaurant at Al Wadi Hotel is one to visit. Their all-day breakfast menu of eggs, pancakes and a bit more is well located next to the Souq.
Also in Msheireb is Izu at the Mandarin Oriental which will also be part of the hotel’s phased re-opening. It’s Mediterranean menu runs the gamut from French to Italian and a few detours.
The French-inspired boulangerie at Intercontinental Doha The City will open its doors to those wanting a coffee and a pastry. Don’t forget to takeaway their baguettes and croissants for breakfast for that “not quite Paris” breakfast.
And breathe…one of the hottest dining out tickets in town is back and the excitement is palpable. While its a tad too hot to enjoy their lovely outdoor terrace, the dining room is big enough for some socially distant Peruvian food.
OK so you can’t actually travel to Greece at the moment but you can pretend!The evergreen favorite Intercontinental Doha at the In that still keeps packing in the crowds hungry for its menu of Greek specials like moussaka, grilled lamb and more, will open as well. Get those plates ready to smash!
The French bistro at The Ritz Carlton that serves up escargot, steak frites and some lovely cheeses is planning to welcome diners on 1 July as is pan-Asian sister restaurant B Lounge.
This restaurant at the Marriott Marquis Doha earned a lot of new fans (including me) during the lockdown thanks to its generous and tasty dinner boxes. They are opening up with their international menu on 1 July and should be on your list.
So here are just 10 Places to Dine in Doha When the COVID-19 Restrictions Are Lifted on 1 July. I will keep this list as updated as possible as we launch ourselves headfirst into the brave new world of post COVID. But, please remember, things can change. Also, don’t forget to ensure your Ehteraz app is up to date and you book ahead – seats will be limited now.
Things are moving fast – updates as of 23 June:
– amnnddd the Mondrian Doha is opening Walima, Morimoto, Ellamia, smoke and Mirrors and the Hudson Tavern. Phew!
Boston’s at the City Centre Rotana is opening soon BUT next week is starting delivery of their comfort food menu- their meter long sausages are legendary as is the buffalo chicken burger.
– they also have margaritas as big as my head and buckets of seafood – head to CLAW BBQ as they are also reopening.
– Italian inspired eatery Trapani, which is in Msheireb is opening 1 July. The truffle pizza is one to try.
– Al Messila Luxury Collection Resort and Spa is taking the plunge with the Deli Kitchen (open all day) and Al Amma their lobby cafe.
– W Doha has just confirmed they will be full steam ahead on 1 July opening:
Market by Jean-Georges
The Cafe at ART29
Paper Moon (Jaidah Square
– Hot newcomer Boho Social has confirmed they are a starter for 1 July. Be sure to try their new bao sliders.
and the Park Hyatt Doha joins the fray – on 1 July both Japanese restaurant Sora and Qatari French concept Opus will open their doors.
The recently opened Doubletree Hilton Al Sadd is opening all of its outlets. Please remember to try the pan Asian goodies at Indochine.
– One of the city’s most popular fine dining restaurants Hakkasan will be opening in July. Can’t wait to try their hand made dumplings and that pepper beef
– Sharq Village and Spa is also opening its outlets including their branch of Al Parisa in the Souq. Head to El Cedro for some post lockdown cocktails and a vibe that isn’t your living room.
– This coffee addict is happy that Meesh cafe at the Crowne Plaza The Business Park is reopening on 1 July. Also Stockburger in the Holiday Inn next door.
– You know things are moving back to normal when the Belgian Cafe opens its doors. And yes folks, you can kick back from 1 July.
– Get your meat sweats on at the excellent Astor Grill at the St Regis Doha from July. Be sure to try their beautifully cooked steaks.
– in fact all of St Regis Doha’s venues will be open including Vine, Tea Lounge, Vintage, Sultan Brahim, La Bodega Negra, Bibo and Scalini – what a list!
– meanwhile Marsa Malaz Kempinski is opening Nawlins Jazz Bar, al Sufra, El Faro, Bohemia, Cafe Murano and Nozomi on 8 July.
– The Curry House in West Bay has been impressing people with their tales in British curry house favorites. They are planning to open on 1 July.
– An update to the Four Seasons is that the excellent Library Bar will be open as well. Bottoms up!
– if sushi is your thing Nozomi offers a high end take on one of the city’s favorite food