Dubai’s Millennium Place introduces Kanteen
Hotelier catches up with The First Group manager – F&B concept development & performance Rachel Sarah Thomson, who tells us what we can expect from the Asian-inspired spot
Describe your new venue.
Kanteen is a late-night restaurant, bar and lounge offering a blend of Japanese cuisine and nightlife. In terms of entertainment, we play old-school R&B music as well as contemporary hits, we have our very own Sake Lady and some experiential surprises. Just as three is the number of perfection in Japan, it’s also the magic number at Kanteen. The venue transforms in the evening comes alive every night until 3am.
Who is your target audience?
Kanteen offers guests a sophisticated atmosphere that is relaxed yet contemporary. We aim to target several markets and want to welcome the young crowd, the after-work crowd, the over-worked moms, the girl gangs, the partygoers, and anyone who enjoys Japanese cuisine and cocktails.
What will you do to ensure the venue is proﬁtable?
Loyalty is very important for Kanteen. Whilst we want our guests to celebrate their most important occasions with us, we also want them to feel comfortable coming back regularly, enjoying our offerings, knowing the team personally and being conﬁdent that every visit is going to be a memorable one. Our prices are competitive, without sacriﬁcing on quality. We have themed nights to serve our target markets. Understanding market trends and protecting the bottom line without jeopardising the experience at Kanteen will be key. One of our favourite concepts that we’re introducing is “Choose Your Own Adventure” which means our guests get to decide how to stir the nights and experiences in their preferred direction – from choosing our happy hour timings to helping us curate our offerings, they all get to be part of the journey – this will be done purely on social media alone.
Are there any USPs that set the outlet apart from its competitors?
When other venues across the city are winding down, Kanteen is busy unleashing a triple serving of great food, drinks, and entertainment until 3am, every night, all week long. Other than being the perfect after-party venue, we also have Kanteen’s very own Sake Lady, who greets guests when they arrive and pops up throughout the night with plenty of sake surprises.
Name your three favourite aspects of the new venue.
First, I would have to say the venue’s contemporary artistic flair that flows from the distinctively Japanese interiors and the eye-catching design details such as authentic Asian masks.
Secondly, the cuisine, which is expertly prepared and affordable with all dishes available for less than AED100 each.
Finally, the Sake Lady who really adds to the experience.