To mark the opening of the holiday season at the Shangri-La Hotel, Vancouver I enjoyed some of the dishes along with some great musicians who will be entertaining during the holidays. Admiring the famous collection of magical folk tales, “The Arabian Nights: Tales of 1,001 Nights,” Shangri-La Hotel, Vancouver was inspired to spice things up this holiday season. Combining elements from the Middle East, 1,001 Nights at Shangri-La encourages guests to savour exquisite Arabian flavours, sip spicy and sweet cocktails, all while enjoying live music and entertainment in Xi Shi Lounge will run until January 5, 2014.
During 1,001 Nights guests can expect to see traditional Lebanese cold and hot mezze served in Xi Shi Lounge. Menu items include hummus, baba ghanooj, homemade pickles and spice-marinated olives, as well as favourites like falafel, tabboulleh salad, lamb kibbeh, and halloumi cheese. To finish on a sweet note, guests can savour baklava and Turkish delight while sipping on traditional Turkish coffee or Moroccan Tea. Xi Shi Lounge’s popular afternoon tea will also receive a dose of Middle Eastern and Turkish flavours, and will be available daily from 11:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for CAD$38 per person. Holiday cheer is spicy and sweet in Xi Shi Lounge, with cocktails like the Sparkling Ruby, made with bubbly, raspberries, honey and cinnamon, or the 1,001 Nights Martini, a mix of vodka and brandy, with hints of apple, maple and cardamom.
While enjoying the exquisite flavours of 1,001 Nights, a range of live music and entertainment will be available in the lounge Monday through Saturday, from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Traditional sitar and oud players will alternate during the week, and Tarab, a Vancouver-based Middle Eastern jazz-fusion band will bring modern interpretations of Egyptian, Arabian, Lebanese and other Middle Eastern songs to the stage on Thursday evenings. Kicking things up a notch are belly dancers performing on Friday and Saturday nights.
An additional element of 1,001 Nights includes a Merchants Market in the hotel’s lobby, inspired by the traditional souq markets found around the Middle East and Mediterranean. Guests can sample and shop for hand-roasted nuts, dried fruits, spices, as well as hand-made jewelry and custom Persian rugs, just in time for the holidays. The Merchants Market will be open 3:00 p.m. to 7:00pm on weekdays, and 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. on weekends. Shangri-La gift cards will also be available for purchase in the hotel’s lower lobby.
Xi Shi Lounge, located at Shangri-La Hotel, Vancouver is open Monday through Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. The lounge is accessible through the hotel or via its direct entrance on Alberni Street. For more details on the 1,001 Nights at Shangri-La pop-up, follow @ShangriLa_Van and #1001NightsatSL on Twitter
By: Richard Wolak