What do you mean there’s no valet?
That was my first impression of Rove, when we arrived there around 11:30am yesterday morning. That’s how spoilt I’ve become, living in Dubai (and not ashamed to admit it, he he!) I actually drove around the hotel three times (no it’s not very big) thinking I had missed the ‘real entrance lobby’, expecting to find the smart looking valet boys waiting to assist me in. No no no, that is the real entrance. O dear – what am I going to do? 😀 It’s the end of the world! (Note, sarcasm intended) Add in the fact that I have a very little person to bring in a pram and though I can withstand the heat, she’s still a little small to get some suntan. I turned on my mommy radar for finding a parking close to a door (it always works), got off, nearly tripped over the concrete car stopper with a few fancy words flying out of my mouth – this was going to be a great morning, I thought.
As I pushed the door open, I walked into a huge cafeteria-like restaurant which I then realised was called The Daily. Similar to a lot of trendy cafes these days with its open ceilings (i.e Fume, Pantry Cafe ) – I saw the spread in the middle and knew I was at the right place. The Bench brunch was on. Relief. Food, juices, here I come 🙂
So Rove had opened its doors a few months now and I’ve seen lots of cool images of its interior on my social media feeds. Funky, yeah, but nothing really got me wanting to go visit it just yet. Then I found out on twitter that The Pavilion has closed its doors, The Bench (click here for my previous review of it) was moving to Rove, and wait for it…. There’s a 241 deal Facebook offer till end of August. 99 AED for two? Alrighty, maybe I’ll go check it out 🙂
Thoughts of our experience?
Buffet-spread – I haven’t been to The Bench at The Pavilion for awhile now but from my vague memory of it (baby-brain)+ photos from my previous trips, it’s pretty similar. Healthy treats – chicken sandwiches, little jars of salads – watermelon/mozzarella , chick peas/capsicum/egg , fruits – I like that it’s packaged in little portions to avoid wastage. Lots of ham, breadsticks, pastries and cakes to share, as well as a fridge full of yoghurt selections. Of the ones I tried (photos below) – no complaints other than the noodle box which was a bit too salty for my liking.
Hot dish – I’ve always ordered the Eggs Benedict. I don’t think I’ve tried any other thing on the menu other than picking on what other people on the table have ordered. The poached eggs were perfectly medium as requested, spinach not too salty. Mum liked her omelette as well. Only thing is – we weren’t too big a fan of the choice of plates that they were using. It made the food look cheap. I know it’s a budget hotel but we grew up seeing these metal plates and cups being used in prison cells … he he
Drinks – You get a choice of hot drink and we both opted for latte which came hot. My favourites was the choice of fresh juices from the buffet spread. It felt proper fresh, not some watered-down deal you get at certain brunches! I could sit there all day sipping on them 🙂
Service and Reservation – I tried to email them to make a reservation the day before but no one ever got back to me – so I wouldn’t recommend getting in touch with them that way. I then rang, and was told that they don’t actually take reservations for The Bench – it’s first come first serve but I wouldn’t be worried if you’re a small group as there’s plenty of space in there!
Service was a bit slow for us – no one came back to give us the menus or to explain what the deal was after being seated – I had to walk over to them to ask them for it. I guess the staff is still adjusting to their first Bench buffet 🙂 Our hot food and drinks came promptly after ordering though, so that’s all good.
Overall, still definitely a great option for brunch – even at full price of 99 AED! On hindsight I don’t mind parking – it’s really like going to The Pavilion where you park your own car anyways 🙂 There’s a play area for toddlers and lots of families with prams so when our little one was making a bit of a fuss, I wasn’t all too embarrassed. There’s a 241 going on on their facebook page now so get it 🙂
PS – I would like to thank the very nice gentleman who helped me push the pram out of the disabled / baby changing when I was completely helpless with a very upset 2-month old.
PPS – Apologies to Rove for activating the emergency alarm in the disabled toilet as well 😀
- The Bench Brunch
- Rove Downtown Dubai
- Adults and children above 12 – 99AED with one hot dish and one hot drink + unlimited access to the buffet spread (241 with their Facebook offer till end of August 2016!)
- 11:00am – 5:00pm Friday and Saturdays
- 04 561 9000