New Japanese Restaurant In Singapore Lets You Dress Up In A Kimono Or Yukata While You Dine
I didn't choose the dressing-up-and-taking-photos life, it chose me! After donning a yukata at T&C Beauty House, and then a hanfu at the new I WAN Selfie Studio, I unexpectedly got the chance to play dress up yet again, in a kimono this time, at HEIWA Wellness & Spa's restaurant.
Keep reading to check out our review!
A new Japanese-style spa in town, HEIWA Wellness & Spa at Harbourfront Centre has a variety of facilities including an onsen and sauna as well as services like massages.
Like Joya Onsen Cafe, this spa provides a full pampering experience beyond beauty services with a dedicated restaurant.
Restaurant at HEIWA Wellness & Spa
The restaurant is helmed by Chef Wong who has years of experience as a sushi chef in Tokyo, with his forte in crafting sashimi and sushi for omakase menus.
Kimono Dining Experience at HEIWA Wellness & Spa
But what sets the dining experience here apart from others is that patrons can have an immersive Japanese experience while looking the part; Omakase diners get to don a kimono while other customers can wear a yukata while having their meal.
On arrival at the spa/restaurant, I was led to a shoe locker where I deposited my shoes and wore a pair of comfy slippers. A staff member then opened a cabinet revealing the range of gorgeous kimonos and obis. I went for a blue and gold ensemble which she expertly helped put on over top of my clothes.
The restaurant also provides props like wasaga aka traditional Japanese umbrellas, fans and hair accessories - perfect for photo taking.
Feeling fancy in my kimono, I headed into the private dining room ready to indulge in a 8-course omakase.
Omakase at HEIWA Wellness & Spa Restaurant
The omakase has six parts: appetiser, sashimi, hot dish, rice, soup and dessert. However, diners can look forward to unexpected surprises as the courses will change according to the freshly imported ingredients the restaurant receives for the day.
It started on a promising note with the Zensai Santen Moriawase, which comes with three kinds of appetisers: foie gras on toast, spinach with chicken, and a nourishing soup with generous chunks of crab meat.
Next up was Sashimi Moriawase, an exquisitely plated dish with five kinds of sashimi. Every piece had a tender, melt-in-your-mouth texture and a fresh, natural sweetness.
The third course was Kani Ankake Chawanmushi, a smooth and silky steamed egg custard topped with tobiko. I'm usually not a fan of chawanmushi because of its strong eggy taste and watery consistency, but thankfully, this steamed egg dish had neither issue!
After that was the Prawn Mentaiyaki. The fresh and buttery prawns and pollock roe had a slightly charred flavour and a wonderfully smoky aroma.
The fifth course was a teppanyaki-style Kagoshima A5 Wagyu. As expected from the high grade, the beef was uber fatty and had a hearty umami taste. The medium doneness brought out its tender, succulent texture.
Following that indulgent course was sushi: Sushi Santen Moriawase.
The chef's fresh picks of seasonal sushi were akami nigiri, tai nigiri and uni gunkan. They had a luxurious taste but paled in comparison to the sashimi platter.
Ending the savoury courses was the light and clean-tasting The Umami Soup with asari clam and assorted seafood.
For dessert, one scoop of Homemade Japanese Ice Cream will be served, though I tried two flavours on this occasion: black sesame and matcha. Both were refreshing, rich and not the least bit cloying - the perfect finale to the exquisite meal.
The omakase is usually priced at $148 for members and $188 for non-members, but Heiwa Wellness & Spa has an ongoing promotion: For $128 (excluding GST), diners can enjoy omakase along with the spa facilities including full-spectrum infrared sauna, mineral-rich onsen and steam bath.
This promotional price is wildly excellent in value for the quality of the food and number of courses, especially when it also comes with a luxurious spa day. If you and your friends are looking to treat yourself to a relaxing and pampering day out, this spa & omakase outing could be a top contender.
For those who are more keen on the a la carte menu, you can expect dishes like Unagi Kabayaki ($32), Garlic Fried Rice ($10) and 5 Kinds Sushi ($22).
More Japanese restaurants & cafes in Singapore:
- Keyaki Restaurant: Japanese garden and a koi pond
- Suzuki Coffee: coffee roaster cafe with Kyoto vibes in a secluded spot at Jurong
- MoMiJi Cafe: Kyoto-style cafe with gourmet sandos and season-themed decor
- Masaaki: Omakase restaurant that looks like a luxury store at Esplanade
- Japanese Expat Recommends 7 Affordable Japanese Restaurants In SG
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Text by: GirlStyle SG