When it was announced last year that Mumbai was to get its own floating restaurants, there was some excitement. This month the two ships that will be home to these restaurants have finally reached the city’s coastline.
The cruise ships, called ‘Neverland’ and ‘See Yah’, set sail from Turkey, crossing the Bosphorus near Istanbul and docking at Mumbai’s port after a month’s journey.
Mumbai-based Mridul Thirani and Shripriya Dalmia Thirani, the couple that was granted the bid to open these restaurants, scouted ships across the globe before they zeroed in on two vessels from Turkey, which have a capacity to host nearly 400 diners each.
The Thiranis believe that once the restaurants are fully functioning, the two ships will also undertake regular cruises between the Gateway of India and Chowpatty.
Shripriya hopes to turn Mumbai’s waterfront into a glitzy attraction for tourists and local visitors. “Dining on the water will then be a must-visit for everyone just like it is for tourists who go to Monte Carlo or the French Riviera. Along with a cruise, it will be coupled with a dining session that will allow people to see the city from the water. One of the ships will be open soon this year,” she says.
Of the two, ‘Neverland’ will be the first one to start cruise services. “There will be multiple restaurants along different levels of the vessel offering a variety of global cuisines. It will be an eclectic mix of fine-dining and casual fare,” says Shripriya.
Future plans also include turning the vessels into wedding destinations in the hope to cater to families that are travelling to seaside destinations abroad. Shripriya says, “The two ships can play the perfect host–perhaps one for the bride’s side and the other for the groom’s.”