Thursday, June 17, 2021

The Newcomer: AKA brings an immersive dining experience to Dubai

Orzu Hospitality Group has launched its third venue in Dubai. AKA, located at The Pointe, Palm Jumeirah, is a cyberpunk-inspired Japanese lounge which aims to redefine the traditional dinner show experience, wowing guests with immersive live performances.

Founder Mirzo Hafizov speaks to Hotel & Catering News ME about his newest venture.

Tell us more about AKA and what it’s going to bring to the Dubai dining scene. 
When working on the AKA concept, it was important for us to consider all the finer details guests appreciate when visiting a restaurant. We want our guests to have a truly unique experience and not just a meal.

Visitors to AKA can expect a vibrant, fresh Asian-inspired menu and bustling atmosphere combined with exceptional service and attention to detail. The space is very intimate and beautifully finished with deep red and black interiors, giving guests a true sense of Tokyo’s nightlife!

How will you adapt the dining experience given the current measures? 
We, of course, adhere to all government regulations and measures currently in place, but on top of that, we also ensure all our waiters are thoroughly trained to best accommodate the new ‘normal’. 

Everyone, from our service team to top management, know that safety is our number one priority. We work together to help each other overcome the challenges that this pandemic has brought.

Guests who visit our venues must feel comfortable when they’re dining with us, as eating out should always be relaxing and enjoyable and not an experience of concern.

What are some of the most unique dishes on the menu? 
Our Asian-inspired menu has a variety of signature dishes such as the Alaskan black cod marinated with miso sauce and paired with home-made yuzu daikon, truly something special.

Guests also seem to love our zesty seabass ceviche with avocado and bean paste. However, the star of the menu has to be our marbled A5 grade wagyu rib eye with foie gras, black truffle and black pepper teriyaki sauce, served on a mini charcoal grill. I don’t think there is any other restaurant that’s serving anything even similar to it.

Why have you decided to bring this venue to Dubai at this time?
There’s always an appetite for new and exciting restaurant concepts in Dubai, so we think AKA will fit in perfectly. The space isn’t large, so it feels intimate and private yet extravagant at the same time.

We have some very extraordinary, unique entertainment which we present depending on restrictions. I hope guests will appreciate that we’ve created an all-round concept which surprises and delights both on the floor and in the specially curated menu.

Tell us more about your journey and other ventures. 
We launched Zor, our popular Uzbek restaurant at The Pointe on the December 1, 2020. The launch was both exciting and challenging, as we had expected many diners to be apprehensive towards the cuisine.

Anticipating this, we created an experience that showcased a variety of authentic Uzbek dishes to encourage guests to explore a cuisine that they’re not familiar with.

Shortly before that, we launched Bramble Bar located at The Pointe Food District, which offers another distinctive experience as it’s unusual for a food court to be licensed.

How are you planning on keeping things exciting at AKA?
Sometimes less is more, and if we say too much about what we’ve got planned, we worry we’ll ruin it. One thing we can surely say is that there’s more than meets the eye at AKA and it’s best explored than described.  

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