One of the world’s leading Peruvian restaurants, La Mar by Gastón Acurio, is announced as the latest culinary addition to The Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences, set to open late 2020. Celebrating the authentic and diverse flavours of Peruvian gastronomy, the restaurant’s contemporary design and elegant interior will provide the perfect backdrop for La Mar’s signature cebiche, freshly grilled anticuchos and pisco-led cocktails.
Synonymous with his country’s cuisine and largely responsible for having successfully brought the nation’s fare to the global stage, Gastón Acurio opened his first restaurant in 1994 and began transforming Lima into the culinary capital of South America. Now with over 50 restaurants worldwide, including three in the USA, Acurio has won the hearts and stomachs of worldwide food lovers with his unparalleled cebiche, unique Peking-style guinea pig pancake, and desserts inspired by his childhood. In 2018 Acurio was awarded The Diners Club Lifetime Achievement Award, regarded as one of the most prestigious accolades in the world of gastronomy.
Located at mezzanine lobby level in The Royal Atlantis Resort and Residences, La Mar by Gastón Acurio will be the first traditional cebichería in Dubai, welcoming guests to an intimate space devoted to the South American tradition of cebiche and pisco sour. With a casual elegance and easy-going vibe, the signature features of La Mar will include an open kitchen, cebiche bar and an anticucho grill, where Acurio’s team of expert chefs will prepare marinated fish as well as tiraditos, causas and marinated anticucho skewers.
La Mar’s menu will deep dive into traditional Peruvian seafood dishes, anchored by Acurio’s celebrated Peruvian cebiche, which is made to order and combines the freshest, sustainable catch with a leche de tigre citrus-based marinade of lime and ají peppers. Additional signature fare will include a selection of sharable causas; mashed potato dumplings topped with seafood, tiraditos; a Peruvian style of sashimi and anticucho, comprised of popular Peruvian street food including chicken thighs, veal heart and octopus in potato cream. The long list of superb signatures will also include ribeye chimichurri, braised, slow cooked Asado cheeks and crispy pork shank. To complete the experience, La Mar will be home to a comprehensive cocktail programme including Peruvian classics infused with Pisco, a Peruvian grape brandy, and iconic cocktails with a Peruvian twist.
Inspired by the design of a ‘Fisherman’s Wharf’, guests will be greeted with a high cane ceiling upon entry with natural light spilling in from floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Palm Island via a large open terrace. Natural materials such as iron, cement, wood and stone complement a warm colour palette of marine blues, green, sandy grey and beige evoking a sense of the ocean at every turn. Handcrafted and locally sourced tableware will emulate rock, coral, the seabed and shimmering fish scales.
Believing that chefs, cooks and kitchen staff are “the best weapons” to bring about change, Acurio’s commitment to sustainability is commendable. All staff are trained to contribute towards Acurio’s mission to educate diners on where their food is coming from and all fish served in La Mar will be sustainably sourced to alleviate over-exploited fish species. Diners will be invited to enjoy fresh, daily sourced produce with which Acurio challenges his team to dream big with to create dishes that are ever changing and adaptable to what can be sourced in that day.
Gastón Acurio comments, “Dubai is perhaps one of the cities with the greatest gastronomic activity in the world. The best restaurants and the most renowned chefs can be found in Dubai sharing their proposals and concepts with cosmopolitan diners who value and enjoy gastronomy as an activity that unites people and cultures. In that sense, it is an honor to be present with a Peruvian culinary embassy, and join the different Peruvian restaurants that today represent us in Dubai. To do it in such an important and commanding place as The Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences is simply the best way to do it”.
Timothy Kelly, Executive Vice President and Managing Director, Atlantis Resorts and Residences comments: “La Mar by Gastón Acurio will be a very special addition to not only The Royal Atlantis but the dining scene in Dubai. I am certain guests will embrace the opportunity to discover Peru through Acurio’s fresh ingredients and recipes and we are proud to welcome a restaurant that operates with sustainability at its core. We look forward to Gastón Acurio joining the likes of Costas Spiliadis, Gordon Ramsay, Nobu Matsuhisa, Heston Blumenthal, Giorgio Locatelli, José Andrés and Ariana Bundy, further enhancing the Atlantis’s positioning as the culinary destination in the region”.
Acurio’s career as a chef began in 1989 in Madrid, when he abandoned a law degree in favour of cooking school. A few years later, he moved to Paris to continue his training at Le Cordon Bleu and there he met his future wife, the German-born pastry chef Astrid Gutsche, with whom he founded his flagship restaurant, Astrid y Gastón, in Lima in 1994. Renowned for his daring experiments using local ingredients, techniques and recipes, Acurio kicked off a new trend for Peruvian gastronomy that would explode onto the global scene a couple of decades later, with Acurio travelling the world to spread the word. Since opening his eponymous destination with Gutsche, Acurio has founded multiple restaurant brands including La Mar, Tanta, Panchita, Chicha and Madam Tusan, with additional branches of Astrid y Gastón and La Mar outside Peru. His flagship restaurant won the No.1 spot on the inaugural Latin America’s 50 Best Restaurants list in 2013 and has held a place on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list since 2011.