At a festive preview event on July 30, the Rideau Centre bid a fond farewell to its original food court, first opened in 1983. Its replacement is a stunning 80,000 square foot space on the south end of the mall, offering almost three times as much seating and a fantastically diverse selection of food prepared by 16 vendors, up from 11 previously.
High ceilings and interesting décor elements give the Rideau Centre's new Dining Hall a modern, welcoming feel that is open, bright and esthetically pleasing. A delicious range of cuisines is on offer, along with amenities such as a public handwashing station, attractive washrooms and attendants so patrons can simply hand in their trays and get back to work or shopping.
One of the best elements of the new dining hall is the scullery, a state-of-the-art dish sorting, washing and packing station that will provide 100,000 hygienic, reusable plastic dishes and glasses, along with metal cutlery, for the various establishments. At the preview event, eager attendees got a behind the scenes tour of this impressive facility, which will also be able to recycle cooking oil and divert up to 75 percent of the dining hall's food waste away from landfill. The Rideau Centre will be only the third Cadillac Fairview property with a scullery, something that will greatly reduce the dining hall's environmental footprint.
The various seating areas are comfortable, attractive and nicely spaced; they include charging stations for today's technologically-minded society. One of the most attractive spaces, decorated with intriguing wing-shaped lighting, has been dubbed "The Officers' Club", in the expectation that it may become a popular spot for workers at the Department of National Defence building across the Mackenzie King Bridge; their building is actually connected to the food court via a discreet tunnel.
New members of the Dining Hall brigade include:
- MLT DWN, a gourmet grilled cheese spot run by two charming Ottawa brothers who have made a name for themselves with their Kingston location
- Big Smoke Burger, a growing Canadian chain with national ans international locations, famous for its delicious burgers
- UMI Sushi, a big Canadian chain that delivers soup, sushi, salads and tempura.
- Shanghai 360, specializing in dumplings, pot stickers and wontons
- Amaya, a popular high-end food court business, offering tasty Indian food. company that includes Indian restaurants, fast-food outlets and prepared foods
- Grillades Torino, offering Mediterranean-influence grilled foods
- Place Tevere, a growing Canadian chain offering Italian fare
- Purdy's Chocolates, dishing up delicious chocolates and ice cream
- Crepe Delicious, offering sweet and savoury crepes
- Green Rebel, specializing in fresh and organic food
Returning to the revamped food court are stalwarts A&W, Jimmy the Greek, Subway, New York Fries and Thai Express.
The new Rideau Centre Dining Hall opens at 11 am on August 1st.