Look up the website for the Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort Pattaya and you are informed that it is an exciting themed five-star resort that is a destination in its own right, an entire world of pleasure, a place where everyday cares are laid aside and where everyone will find something to amaze and delight.
My family did spend some days at the resort earlier this year, and I have to say they were amazed and delighted. That being the case, Miss Terry Diner and Madame accepted an invitation to dine at the Centara’s Acqua restaurant, just one of the outlets (it is an enormous property), but the most upmarket one.
Surely there can be nobody who does not know this huge edifice, the monument to the Lost World? Just to make sure, you get there from the Pattaya-Naklua Road going down Soi 18 (opposite the Coffee Club) right to the bottom and turn right. Centara Mirage is on your left, careful turning in, it’s tight.
The lobby is a busy place, but go through and turn right, and Acqua is on your left. The décor is very modern and imaginative with a glassed in private dining room, plus a wine cellar, then modern style tables and chairs, with a preponderance of Italianesque red and white checkered tablecloths.
Get comfy and peruse the menu. Slowly, as there appeared to be three. One for cocktails, one for the specials such as Surf and Turf and one a la carte. The menu items are in English, Thai, Italian and Russian. Take your pick of item and language. (Such a shame that Esperanto never caught on.) The cutlery deserves its own mention – the most elegant in up-market Pattaya dining.
We took the opportunity to sip on a Stonefish Sauvignon Blanc, available by the glass @ B.330, and changed to the Stonefish Cabernet Sauvignon Blanc later in the evening. We were also joined by Sunee Robinson, the very pleasant Public Relations Manager for the property.
One of the other menus was their “Trattoria” with pastas B. 290-360, chicken piccata done in lemon butter B. 350, or a pork Milanese for the same price.
The majority of items are certainly not over the top, salads B. 280-390, risottos B. 520-590 and pastas B. 390-790. We also ordered a cheese platter which offered Grigio, Talegio, Pecorina and Parmesan for B. 590. In Italian fashion we also enjoyed an antipasto plate with melon and ham.
We had chosen the cheese platter as a starter and this was to lead us up to our main dish, a steak. This was a Wagyu steak for three (B. 3790) and yes, enormous. It comes with Rosemary potatoes, six different styles of salt and three different sauces. The meat was cooked exactly to our order, but you definitely need two other diners to help you. The steak is enormous and after such gourmanderie we did sit for a while, but were talked into a dessert, with the usual Italian favorites to choose from.
Acqua has its own style, not formal but well organized and with enough staff to ensure the diners are looked after. We were visited by one of the chefs who explained the enormous steak, which was a meal for three (truly!) which we ordered after persuasion from Ms. Sunee.
It was a very pleasant dinner, and to have Stonefish by the glass made for greater enjoyment. One does tire of “fruit” wines.
It is not the cheapest restaurant around, but definitely one of the better ones. A great place for celebrations, though if you go gently in the Trattoria menu it will not be an OTT evening. Do Try.
Acqua, Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort, 277 Moo 5, Banglamung, telephone 038 30 1234, secure parking in the resort grounds, hours 6 p.m. to 11 p.m., open seven days.