Even before the Singapore Botanic Gardens was awarded the UNESCO World Heritage Site status, we had considered it to be the nicest public space in Singapore. Since then, the Gardens have been improved and expanded. More restaurants and places to eat have been added. To help our readers plan a day out at the park, here is our list of Botanic Gardens Restaurants.
The Corner House is the grand dame of restaurants at the Botanic Gardens. It is located in a converted black and white colonial bungalow built in 1910. The interior is as beautiful as its exterior. It was awarded one star in the MICHELIN Guide Singapore 2016.
It is quite appropriate that botanical elements are given an emphasis in this restaurant. Corner House describes their food as “Gastro-Botanica”, which is defined in their website as “the contemporary cuisine created by Chef Jason Tan that emphasizes refinement and quality, and gives equivalent weight on the plate to protein and botanical elements.” You can read about our visit to Corner House here.
As at the time of writing, they serve lunch from Tuesday to Sunday. Options are 3- course, 4-course and 5-course discovery menus priced at $58, $78 and $128++ respectively. Dinner options are more elaborate (and expensive) – 4,5,6 & 8-course menus at $158, $178, $198, $268++ respectively. Sunday brunch looks like a sensible choice – 4 course at $88 and a bottle of vino or champagne at $100++. Our suggestion for a beautiful Sunday: make a reservation at Corner House for 12 noon. Go to church or sleep late. Have a wonderful 2.5 hour brunch at Corner House. Then walk off the calories around the park, breathe in the fresh air and smell the roses and orchids.
1 Cluny Road, E J H Corner House
Singapore Botanic Gardens
(Nassim Gate Entrance)
Lunch: 12 pm – 3 pm
(last order 2.30 pm)
Dinner: 6.30 pm – 11 pm
(last order 10 pm)
Brunch: 11.30 am – 3 pm
(last order 2.30 pm)
Dinner: 6.30 pm – 11 pm
(last order 10 pm)
The building known as The Garage used to be a garage of the former University of Singapore campus. It was converted into a place for two more Botanic Garden restaurants in 2017. A casual cafe, Bee’s Knees, takes up the ground floor. More serious dining takes place in the Botanico restaurant upstairs. The entrance to Botanico is at the top of a narrow flight of steps at the left end of the building.
The atmosphere at Botanico is less formal than Corner House. They serve a Spanish style of cuisine. The Chef had worked in some world famous kitchens – including that of the late 3-Michelin-starred Chef Santi Santamaria, and El Celler de Can Roca.
They have an a la carte menu. At lunchtime, their 2 and 3-course options priced at $35 and $45++ offer good value for money. You can read about our visit to Botanico here.
50 Cluny Park Road, Singapore 257488
Tel: +65 9831 1106
Wednesday to Friday : 12 to 3pm + 6 to 10pm
Saturday : 6 to 10pm
Sunday : 11.30am to 3pm + 6 to 10pm
Bee’s Knees is located on the ground floor of The Garage. Most of its tables are out in the open, under the big umbrellas that try to provide some shade. There is a small air-conditioned space. Bee’s Knees is most suitable as a refreshment stop. A place to have a quick bite and a drink or two. They serve breakfast and mostly sandwiches, pastas and pizzas. You can read about our visit to Bee’s Knees here.
Sunday to Tuesday : 8am to 6pm
Wednesday to Saturday : 8am to 8pm
“Casa Verde” means green house in Italian. Although its menu has a big section listing Italian favourites like pizza and pasta dishes, the menu is quite diverse. What is of interest to us is their local food items. Their laksa, Hokkien mee, ngoh hiang were all good. We were surprised to learn that Casa Verde is part of same group that also run the two Michelin Star Les Amis restaurant. They are quite a versatile bunch! You can read about our visits here and here.
Casa Verde is probably the most popular of the Botanic Gardens Restaurants. It is relaxed and dog-friendly, do expect a crowded space of humans and dogs during peak hours on weekends.
Food for Thought
(September 2017 Update – This outlet is closed)
Food For Thought is a casual cafe at the building near the main entrance. It is the largest of the Botanic Gardens restaurants. There is a large air-conditioned space as well as a spacious al fresco area.
It serves mostly Western staples like burgers and pastas with one or two local items. We thought that their Beef Cheese Burger ($9) was good value for money. The ribeye steak ($24) was a decent steak for this price. We think this is the most convenient casual dining place in the Botanic Gardens for families and large groups, especially if air-conditioned comfort is important.
Tanglin Gate, #B1-00, Singapore 259569
(Last orders at 4.30pm)
Weekends are open as usual. Monday – Sunday 8am to 9pm
(Last orders at 8.30pm)
1 Cluny Road
Ginger Garden, Botanic Gardens
Monday to Thursday (Except public holidays) : 9.00am to 9.30pm (Last seating)
Friday & Eve of Public Holidays: 9.00am to 10.00pm (Last seating)
Saturday: 10.00am to 10.00pm (Last seating)
Sunday & Public Holidays: 10.00am to 9.30pm (Last seating)
Easy Breakfast: 9.00am to 11.00am (Monday – Friday except public holidays)
Brunch: 10.00am to 5.00pm (Weekends & Public Holidays)
Location and Carparks
Finally, a quick summary of the restaurant locations and carpark locations if you are driving to the Botanic Gardens. Food for Thought is near the main entrance (Tanglin Gate) opposite the Gleneagles Hospital. It has direct access to the underground car park right next to it. Halia is in the middle of the Gardens. The nearest access point is Tyersall Gate on Tyersall Road, a small quiet road that has some roadside parking. Casa Verde and Corner House are near the Visitor Centre. The best access is from Cluny Road via the Nassim Gate. There are some sheltered carpark lots and a large open carpark nearby. Botanico and Bees Knee’s are quite far from everyone else. They are near the Bukit Timah Road end of the Gardens. Access from the Bukit Timah Gate off Cluny Road near Serene Centre. There are some surface carpark lots.
As menus and operating hours often change, do check with the restaurants for the updated information. For more information on the Singapore Botanic Gardens please check their website.