The IRIS brand, is known for its super chic restaurant bar and lounge, is a concept originating from Beirut. Due to its continued success, a second location launched in Dubai December 2013 on the 27th floor of the renowned Oberoi Hotel in Business Bay, a stone's throw away from the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel and Downtown Dubai. Since then, it's quickly become one of Dubai's most popular rooftop venues with a young and fashionable crowd who are happy to lineup to get in during peak times (quick tip: Thursdays after 11pm). What makes IRIS so alluring is its all-round cool factor that's evident from the moment you walk in.
From the 27th floor, you can expect breath-taking views of the city from Downtown Dubai to coast. Sip on delicious cocktails and observe the ever-so-glamorous clientele, you won't see any girls at IRIS short of salon-styled hair, a Chanel handbag and heels. So, when we heard they were planning to introduce a new indoor area, it was our top priority to pay a visit to find out if the sexy rooftop vibe could be created indoors.
IRIS's indoor area is shaped in a rectangle with the bar in the middle. It's smaller than the terrace creating a more intimate atmosphere. We arrived on a Thursday evening for a light dinner and the bar area was already busy with an after-work crowd. The food menu at IRIS is not overwhelmingly large, in fact, compared to their drinks menu, its quite simple and straightforward, which I like.
We ordered a selection on sharing appetizers that included a very healthy Scottish salmon tartare with red quinoa, Spanish style friend calamari, fresh crab salad with avocado and an interesting dish our waiter insisted we try: the prawn lollipop with coconut, lemon grass and almond dip (a total hit). As for drinks, we tried the Spiced Ginger – a refreshing mocktail made with homemade ginger syrup, dates and soda water. If you prefer less sugar, they'll make it accordingly.
As the evening progressed the venue's atmosphere seamlessly transformed. What had started as a casual haunt for after-work drinks and dinner accelerated into a buzzing nightclub by 12am. Hats off to the IRIS team who have done an excellent job at keeping the venue consistent both indoor and out. We joined a large group of friends that had an area reserved, complete with bottle service and our own waiter on hand to pour drinks. We had a fantastic evening with great food, attentive service and a lovely atmosphere. I enjoyed starting off our evening at IRIS and being able to stay in the same venue to continue the party.
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Located at The Oberoi, Dubai (27th floor)
For reservations: +97 15695 11442