The first thing you need to know is you have no reason to be afraid, not even if you have a fear of heights.
“It’s extremely, extremely, extremely safe,” said Rhiza Pascua, CEO of MMI Live, who, with husband Angelo, has brought Dinner in the Sky to the Philippines with partner DITS Asia. “The view is great. If you go on the 5:30 one, you get to see the sunset. At 7 p.m., you get to enjoy the lights and the skyline.”
Dinner in the Sky, which allows people to enjoy a delicious meal prepared by top chefs 150 feet in the air, is on Forbes’ list of Top 10 Most Unusual Restaurants.
Since the announcement of the Philippine run, organizers have been flooded with inquiries and reservations.
Pascua first experienced Dinner in the Sky in Belgium four years ago. “It was great, I was smitten. I loved the experience, I wanted to go back. And then I just kept going. Last year, we were in Romania for Holy Week, and we went again. We love to eat and we love unique experiences. Dinner in the Sky is a combination of the two.”
They wanted to bring the experience to Filipinos, thus the first run here, which ends May 21.
Dinner in the Sky was developed in Belgium by Stefan Kerkhofs 12 years ago.
He told Lifestyle, “I have an attraction company and we had a big platform and we would lift people 50 meters in the sky. Once, we were on this platform at a concert, and one of my friends said, “Hey Stefan, wouldn’t it be great if we can eat and drink here?”
He partnered with David Ghysels and made Dinner in the Sky happen. “This is the best way to cure your fear of heights,” he said. “Safety is our number one priority.”
Dinner in the Sky has never had a single accident. The platform and machinery were designed following German guidelines on flying structures, while the platforms were built and are regularly checked and maintained in Belgium.
Kerkhofs’ experience with melding cranes and entertainment goes back 29 years. “When I was a child, I played with cranes because we had a crane company.”
With Dinner in the Sky, he added food to the mix. The first Dinner in the Sky meal? Oysters. “It was fairly simple,” he said, laughing.
Today, Dinner in the Sky has reached 63 countries. And the menu is far from simple, with fantastic chefs at the helm of each meal.
Pascua said, “I integrated the MMI style for Dinner in the Sky Philippines. I said, ‘Why don’t we change the chefs every two weeks or so?’ That way, we can get a lot of people to return. It’s the same when we announce our new concerts, people start calling, they get excited. We want that. We want returns.”
The chef lineup includes three from official food and venue partner Solaire Resort and Casino—chef Hylton Le Roux of Waterside (April 2 to 8), Alan Marchetti from Finestra (April 9 to 15) and Yakumi’s Norimasa Kosaka (April 16 to 23).
Chef Kenneth Cacho, director for Culinary Arts of the International School for Culinary Arts and Hotel Management, will be featured April 24 to May 7.
“He’s our personal favorite (Filipino chef). He’s the only local chef featured in Dinner in the Sky,” said Pascua.
Michelin-star chef Yves Mattagne, who runs Sea Grill in Brussels, completes the lineup (May 8 to 21). “He’s the number one chef in Belgium. He will be here for three weeks for our finale,” said Rhiza.
The table accommodates 22 diners. There are two dinners each day, one at 5:30 p.m., and another at 7 p.m. The experience lasts an hour. Bookings can be made on www.dinnerinthesky.ph.
Economy class seats, which are P9,990 per head, include entrance to the Dinner in the Sky Philippines lounge, exclusive four-course dinner menu, and complimentary juice and water during the meal.
Business class seats, P14,990 per head, include entrance to Dinner in the Sky Philippines lounge, exclusive upgraded five-course dinner menu, complimentary juice and water during the meal, one glass of champagne at the lounge, two glasses of wine (one in the lounge and one during the meal) and priority boarding.
First-class seats, which cost P24,990 per head, include entrance to Dinner in the Sky Philippines lounge, exclusive premium five-course dinner, complimentary juice and water during the meal, free-flowing champagne at the lounge, free-flowing wine at the lounge and during the meal, six pieces of fresh oysters from Finestra, eight pieces of The Patisserie signature chocolates. First class diners will be the first to board.
Back in October
The Pascua couple are also Dinner in the Sky’s partner in bringing the experience to the United States later this year.
This won’t be the last time Dinner in the Sky will be in the Philippines. “We’ll be back around October and maybe all throughout the Christmas season,” Pascua said.
Other things you need to know about Dinner in the Sky:
Diners must be 14 years old and above, with a minimum height of 145 centimeters and a maximum weight of 150 kilograms. Guests below age 18 must be with a parent or guardian who is at least 18 years old. The parent or guardian will need to sign their indemnity form. Wheelchair users and people with mild disabilities may experience Dinner in the Sky, but organizers request that they are contacted before seats are purchased so their safety officer can make an evaluation.
There will be lockers for your belongings.
There is no restroom so you should go for a wee break at Solaire before dinner starts.
Don’t be late. Check into the Sky Lounge one hour before your session. Think of it as checking into a flight. The table will not wait for you, it will take off without you. If you are late, your booking is considered forfeited. There will be no refund.
Celebrating a special occasion? You may choose add-ons like Solaire’s Chocolate Celebration Cake, wine, champagne and other treats when you make your booking.
If you’re an event organizer, a corporation, or just a really loaded individual, you can create your own Dinner in the Sky Experience.