The Venue Amid the catwalk of designer boutiques in the recently-opened Fashion Avenue extension at The Dubai Mall, GIA Dubai focuses on traditional Italian recipes surrounded by contemporary styled interiors and a terrace with fantastic views of The Dubai Fountain.

The Design Designed by Australian firm Hecker Guthrie, the interiors embrace the concept of La Dolce Vita. ‘Inspiration came from Italian 1950s’ films and architecture,’ says Paul Hecker. Murano-inspired dividing glass screens sit around the kitchen, creating a dramatic glowing box that allows guests to see the chefs at work. The restaurant’s bar is set within a white frame of geometrical concrete patterns that add a symmetrical dimension to the light and airy space. There’s also a mid-century retro feel to the pendant lighting and cabinetry that provides character to the space. Although there are pops of orange in the private dining room, teal tilework behind the bar, and the terrace features turquoise banquettes, the mostly neutral and grey colour palette is contemporary and allows the cuisine to be the splash of colour and hero of the design.

The Experience Tuscan Chef Tommaso Gonfiantini is passionate about the Italian classics and crafts recipes with fresh ingredients – some imported directly from Italy. Signature dishes include a burrata e pomodori, Wagyu beef bresaola and gnocchi al gorgonzola. For a quick respite from shopping, the dessert drinks are a specialty at GIA, with innovative and instagrammable offerings such as the Truffle Martini with shaved black truffles and gold foil, or the Foresta Nera with its chocolate gelato and cherries dramatically presented with smoking liquid nitrogen. Bellissima! 

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