As summer approaches, the Time Hotels’ Time Oak Hotel & Suites team is installing sunshades at its urban rooftop garden to allow the soil to rest and prepare the seedling house for the next season.
The hotel launched the UAE’s first urban rooftop garden in January to produce its own natural and fairly priced fruit, vegetables and herbs.
The concept is built around the principles of the slow food movement which champions “good, clean and fair food” and the Time team was trained by founder of Slow Food Dubai, Laura Allais.
Time Hotels Management CEO Mohammad Awadalla commented: “Introducing the Urban Garden project to Time Oak Hotel & Suites allows us to provide high quality food with a flavourful taste that is fairly priced and produced and transported in a responsible way.
“It is in line with our ethos of making space available that would otherwise be under-utilised. Although there is an initial investment form our side, the cost of implementing the rooftop garden is far outweighed by the social and environmental benefits which will be felt for years to come.”
The Urban Garden grows organic, heirloom vegetables, herbs and fruit from seed or stem propagation, without the use of chemicals and industrially produced pesticides.
Lemongrass, mint, Indian borage, oregano, basil, cucumber, zucchini, capsicum, baby marrow, pineapple, bitter gourd, sweet potatoes, garlic and pumpkin are among the vegetables and herbs grown in the garden.
All work is carried out by volunteers from Slow Food Dubai, the first organisation of its kind in the GCC, aided by Time Oak engineering, food and beverage staff and chefs.
The first harvest took place in December 2015, producing a selection of herbs such as basil, oregano and lemongrass.
At present cucumber, zucchini flowers, bitter gourd, capsicum, cucumber, sweet potatoes are being picked.
The produce is used in the kitchen of Time Oaks Hotel & Suites’ Petals restaurant.