If familiarity with Marine Drive and the many restaurants dotting its side has been driving you towards the suburbs, the prospect of a novel dining experience can steer you back.
The city’s first on-the-move air-conditioned restaurant will be driving along the iconic road in a few days. The Regional Transport Office (RTO) and tourism department have given the green signal to a double-decker bus that will host a restaurant serving lavish meals on wheels the bottom deck will be air-conditioned while the upper deck will be open-air. Services are expected to start from tomorrow.
Persons who board the bus will get a glimpse of the iconic Queen’s Necklace as they enjoy their meals. The bus will start its journey from Hotel Marine Plaza, and moving southwards, take a U-turn from Nariman Point to proceed towards Girgaum Chowpatty, from where another about-turn will bring the bus back to Marine Plaza. The bus will move at an average speed of 20-25 kmph.
There will be four services in a day at 1 and 4 in the afternoon and 8 and 10 in the evening. Sources in the RTO said that the routes have been approved and all permissions obtained. “This will be a commercial vehicle for which the organisers had come to seek permission,” said M Jadhav, regional transport officer, Tardeo.
The bus can accommodate 40 people at a time. The menu includes a 12-course meal, featuring vegetarian and non-vegetarian cuisine. “We have a tie-up with Hotel Marine Plaza for serving food,” said John Dias of The Moving Cart, which is running the restaurant. The bus has been fitted with attractive interiors, the bottom deck lit with fluorescent lights with an attractive ceiling, and a huge LCD television. Plush and comfortable seating arrangements have been made on both the decks.
Book in advance
Of course, you won’t be waiting at a bus stop before enjoying a meal aboard this mobile diner. A table in the bus will have to be booked in advance. Parking facilities will be made available at Marine Plaza for those looking for a parking spot before they hop aboard for a meal. Tariffs are yet to be announced. The Moving Cart runs similar services in Ahmedabad, Surat and Chennai, and is planning to branch out overseas as well.