Orient Palace (禧家) is a new restaurant at the Furama Riverside Hotel, Singapore. If the name of hotel sounds unfamiliar, you are not alone. We had to do some research to discover that it is the former Apollo Hotel along Havelock Road. The short cylindrical building that used to house karaoke places is known as the Annex Block. The Orient Palace is located on the ground floor of this Annex Block. According to their website, Orient Palace is “Singapore’s first premium contemporary dining and entertainment hub”.
The plain exterior of the new Orient Palace restaurant at Furama Riverside Hotel hides a lavish interior. The central part of the dining hall looks glamorous, but the stalls along the perimeter were not as glam. They are apparently open kitchen areas to prepare the various specialities of the restaurant, such as roasted suckling pig. They were quite empty when we were there.
Orient Palace has put up its menu on its website, which is a good thing as diners can know exactly what to expect. Seafood items (especially dishes made from different parts of giant grouper) feature prominently in the menu. At lunch time they have an executive lunch menu at $19.90 per person. The lunch includes a main course, a side dish, drink and dessert. Here is a screen shot of the Orient Palace lunch executive set menu. Some items were not available at the time of our visit.
For main courses, we opted for the spare ribs bak kut teh and signature seafood mee goreng. Both were nicely presented. As for taste, I thought that they were better than the average but not exceptional. What I like about them is that the flavouring is well-balanced. The bak kut teh soup is peppery, but just mildly so. It is a light broth that does not have a strong ‘porky’ smell or taste. Similarly, the mee goreng has a gentle seafood flavour. The prawn was fresh and perfectly cooked.
Our side dishes were the salt and pepper tofu and traditional prawn roll. They were good, but the portions were so tiny.
For desserts we had the chendol and the mango sago. The chendol was the more beautiful dish, but the mango sago tasted better – the mango sweetness and pomelo tartness combined well.
Overall, we thought that the Orient Palace restaurant was an interesting place. We thought it would be just another new Chinese restaurant, but it is a more adventurous place that we had imagined. We are glad that the owners have decided to create a restaurant that is not from the usual cookie cutter. Our next mission is to visit them at night to experience the night entertainment. Their website describes the entertainment as “live band performances of yesteryear classics to modern-day hits across different genres from 7PM, Monday – Saturday.”
Overall Rating: 3 TOPs
407 Havelock Road #01-01
Furama Riverfront Singapore Annex Block
Tel: +65 6931 8888
Monday – Friday & Sunday: 11:30am – 3pm, 5:30pm – 1am
Saturday and Eve of Public Holidays: 11:30am – 3pm, 5:30pm – 2am