By Naveed Rozais
The locale of Park Road, Colombo 5 is now host to a somewhat unprecedented sensory and culinary experience. Officially opening its doors last week, 7 Degrees Restaurants is a complex of unique restaurants, each of which looks to engage customers completely from the second they walk in.
Located on the top three floors of a seven-storey building towards the tail end of Park Road closer to Lanka Hospitals, 7 Degrees creates a bubble of plush restaurants that seem a world away from the street and city downstairs. Guests enter 7 Degrees at its first level – Amazoniko – a fusion bistro and bar which focuses on serving classic dishes with a unique twist, from fish and chips to enchiladas to inventive cocktails.
The interior of Amazoniko takes inspiration from the Amazon and despite being entirely indoors, still blends indoor luxury with tropical foliage to create a unique setting. Currently open exclusively for dinner service, the bistro will be made available for private functions during the day, with plans to host theme nights and dance shows in the near future.
With immersive experiences being the watchword at 7 Degrees, the second storey plays host to Sri Lanka’s first and only immersive dining experience, dubbed Immerse. This unique setting is an event like no other. An intimate dining space that seats up to 10 people, Immerse features a room that is built to captivate the senses with Dolby Atmos surround sound and tailor-made projections that cover the walls and floor with individual projections for each place setting as well.
The Immerse dining experience is curated over 1.5 hours with a selection of visual themes and a range of three- to five-course menus to choose from. Immerse will soon be made available for a variety of curated events including proposals and intimate dinners fit for any special occasion.
The third level of 7 Degrees Restaurants is the Mediterranean BBQ and bar experience – WTF. This open-air space can accommodate up to 35 pax and is ideal for a casual brunch, sunset drinks, or a gathering with friends. Equipped with multiple projectors that will showcase ongoing games and matches, WTF serves up a range of mouthwatering dishes like grilled marrow bone, succulent kebabs made of imported meats, and ribeye steaks, deriving its preparation and flavours from authentic Middle Eastern cuisine.
A further, more private level above WTF features three intimate dining spaces overlooking Colombo’s skyline from a hitherto uncaptured vantage point. This level is predominantly for couples and small groups of up to six people (though six is a bit of a squeeze).
All of 7 Degrees’ culinary experiences are designed by renowned Executive Chef Patrick Velans and his team. The restaurant hub 7 Degrees is founded by Dubai-Sri Lankan sibling duo Heshani Malwenna and Nalin Malwenna and it was designed to bring a taste of the Emirati dining experience back to Sri Lanka through these carefully curated themes and menus in an immaculately designed setting that provides plenty of Instagrammable backdrops and exclusive spaces to relax in style.
Speaking at the opening, 7 Degrees Restaurants Co-Founder Heshani Malwenna said: “I have lived and worked in Dubai for most of my life. I love Sri Lanka but each time I visited the island, I found that there was so much more we could offer in terms of entertainment and nightlife. Opening my own space has always been a dream of mine and after everything Sri Lanka has been through, I made it my mission to give back to my country in the way I knew best. I wanted to bring a slice of Emirati luxury back home. This project has been years in the making and I’m beyond grateful to finally open the doors to 7 Degrees tonight.”