For Royal Sonesta Boston, food service is not just an incidental part of its offerings – it’s one of the most important components of the overall experience it provides to guests.
“We focus on a concept we call ‘food is art,’” General Manager Michael Medeiros says. “Most things here are made from scratch and prepared on-site; the quality of food is very important and we’ve always prided ourselves on that.”
Royal Sonesta Boston’s “food is art” philosophy also addresses the aesthetic part of the dining experience. “To us, a big part of ‘food is art’ is the idea that food should look as good as it tastes,” Executive Chef and Director of Food and Beverage Brian Dandro says.
The AAA Four Diamond hotel, which is part of the Sonesta International Hotel Corp., is given a great deal of freedom when it comes to developing its menus and restaurant offerings. “We’re encouraged to be creative when it comes to giving our guests what they want.”
The hotel houses three distinct restaurants, with a fourth food and beverage concept slated to open within the next few months. ArtBar, Royal Sonesta Boston’s upscale three-meal restaurant, offers creative, seasonal American cuisine as well as a closely-curated wine list and seasonal specialty cocktails. “We’ve tried to diversify our menu to have traditional, comfort food, but we also have local and regional cuisine,” Dandro says.
ArtBar’s menu includes seafood offerings such as lobster, salmon, clam chowder and octopus salad as well as steaks and hamburgers.
The restaurant also offers a warm, inviting atmosphere. True to its name, ArtBar features pieces of art from the hotel’s large collection. Art also graces the Royal Sonesta Boston’s lobby and second floor common areas.Diners can also experience scenery of a different kind thanks to the hotel’s location along the Cambridge, Mass., side of the Charles River. An outdoor patio offers views of the Boston skyline. “There are only two restaurants on the Cambridge side of the river that have outdoor dining, and they’re both located here,” Medieros says.
The second restaurant offering riverside dining is Restaurant Dante, operated by Boston chef Dante de Magistris. The restaurant, named “Best Italian” by Boston magazine and nationally recognized by Bon Appetit, offers “classic Italian cuisine with a twist,” the hotel says.
Guests looking for a quick bite or more casual meal can find it at Studio, the Royal Sonesta Boston’s recently opened coffee shop. The eatery offers specialty coffee drinks, pastries, sandwiches and other options. All pastries are made in-house.
Studio offers both sit-down and on-the-go options. Guests can place breakfast orders using doorknob-hanger menus and have those delivered at a time of their choosing in a bag, or order through room service and have their orders delivered within 15 minutes. “We’re the first in Cambridge to do bag service,” Dandro says. “Most people at breakfast or lunch time are in a rush and want good food fast.”
Hip Yet Friendly
Royal Sonesta Boston will soon add to its food and beverage offerings. Motif, a contemporary lounge, will open later this year. The new lounge will be the latest improvement to the hotel, which opened in 1964. One of the Royal Sonesta Boston’s two guest towers was recently renovated. That project involved revamping 200 guest rooms, including 20 suites, he adds.
The new offerings are part of the hotel’s efforts to reposition itself. “We’re presenting ourselves in a different way than we have in the past,” Medeiros says. “We want to be considered very hip, chic and contemporary while also being family friendly.”