Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Inside Lagos’s Most Expensive Chinese Restaurant + Why Lagos Big Boys & Big Girls rush to Shiro


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The Bar of Shiro

Shiro, or castle in Japanese dialect, is the name of Lagos’ new dramatic and soaring Restaurant and leisure center situated on the Island of Lagos. On arrival at the Landmark Village, Oniru—Lagos Indian restaurant, the interiors immediately captures your imagination and stretches your senses for an inquiry. Especially if the visit is in the evening like Asabeafrika found out recently.  
 The towering interior of the restaurant which is laced with a unique combination of natural stones, woods, slate, leather, bamboo and velvet complemented by shimmering lotus pools, soft furniture and subtle lightings, arrest your imagination immediately. The scale of art is impressive but so is the attention to detail in profiling.
 Shiro’s ability to stimulate your senses continues with their diverse cuisine and sophisticated bar. Inspired by the fiery orient culture of the far & middle east, the menu offers an assorted mix of Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese and Thai meals that includes a wide range of sushi, sashimi and Cantonese soft, sum to tempt even the most discerning of appetite. If that doesn’t appeal to you, then perhaps the entertainment at one of it’s live Teppanyaki tables might. The signature cocktails there are international with an Asian twist complemented by a substantial wine list.
Last Thursday Evening, your Africa’s Number 1 Celebrity Encounter blog, Asabeafrika visited Shiro and spoke to the two men who run the six months old talk of the town Indian Restaurant in Lagos. Dhiren Bawar and Unni Krishnan (Operations Manager) told us the secret of their success within a short while in operation. You will enjoy the excerpts.

How we run Shiro & Hard Rock CafeDHIREN BAWAR
Dhiren Bawar and his colleague, Unni Krishnan with the GDA
It is quite amazing that we have such a serene environment here and I was quite surprised at your octane culture. How have you been able to succeed so far?
Bawar talks to the GDA
We own Hardrock and Shiro as well. The company is SJM Ventures from India. Our parent company is called JSM, we have 8 Hardrock (Cafes) and 3 Shiro (Restaurants) in India and we decided to open one in Lagos because my boss is from Lagos, he is an indigene of Lagos. So, we opened Hard Rock (Café) first and Shiro next.
What is Shiro all about?
Bawar opens up to the GDA as Unni looks on
Shiro is basically an exciting restaurant with mixed course meal. We sell Vietnamese, Korean, Thai, Chinese meals. So, we basically offer all the cuisine of Asian countries that is why it is exciting. That is how we started and it has been six months since we opened.
What is the secret of your popularity within this short while of establishing your business in Lagos? Why is Shiro now leading in the Victoria Island cuisine business community?
The GDA meets the Shiro executives
One is because of the space, the ambience, the service, the food, the menu, meal on the beach with the private beach as well that we have. We are offering Lagos something they haven’t seen before in terms of high sea lanes, the status and stuffs like that, the ambience is very arresting and the service culture is royalty. We treat our customers like kings and queens.
Talking about your various statues on the wall and everywhere, it really called my attention when I came in, this is the first time I am seeing such a bold cultural manifestation side by side hospitality?
Bawar to Asabeafrika...'At Shiro, service counts'
The status simply adds to the culture of service. It is of Cambodian mythology, her name is Tara and she depicts wealth and prosperity.
Does Tara have any genealogy with the Egyptian mythology?
Tara: The goddess of wealth and prosperity
No, she is one of the ten disciples of Buddha. She simply depicts wealth and prosperity.
So, what other deals do you have for fun seekers who want to have their weddings, birthday and launch ceremonies here, I mean across the sea as we are now?
Unni, GDA & Bawar
We do a lot of birthday ceremonies as you could see inside; we have events, family parties, cocktail ceremonies and many more. We have started to do destination weddings as well. It is a unique service bouquet from us.
What is Destination Wedding all about?
The Shiro Executives in a pose with the GDA
It simply mean you can book the entire beach and we charge you a certain amount of money. We can even cater for you or you bring your caterer from outside, it depends on what you require.
Does it stops with weddings alone?
Bawar to Asabeafrika...'We don't put a price to quality service'
Not at all but since we have a lot of young and mobile people who appreciate quality memories and love to have quality events, we are majorly making our destination wedding bouquets extra-ordinary but we could do more than that. You could birth with a destination product launch event, a destination birthday party and a destination family outing party or picnic ceremony. It is a compendium of ceremonies. We just want the best for our customers. That is the spirit of Shiro.
How expensive is your service, is your service for everybody or a certain class of people in the society?
Hospitality unlimited at Shiro Bar
 
I wouldn’t like to put a price to an experience because Shiro is all about experience, so I wouldn’t really want to put a price to it. But if you had to put a price to it, it will be very moderate and affordable. All you need to do is to make a trial. If you are conservative you can dine with a meal for two people for about twenty thousand naira. It is still moderate, but that again means you are still conservative. I mean if you want to do a good meal between two people, I will say it cost you about sixty thousand Naira, Fifty Thousand Naira it depends.
You mean food alone?
Bawar Speaks with the GDA
That’s including drinks, but that is if you are doing something fancy. If you are doing something very basic, it is going to cost you twenty thousand naira.
In Nigeria we love culture, hospitality and celebration. How is that affecting your business?
The Royal Culture of Shiro depicting Hospitality
Indians are known for their hospitality; they are known for their service strength, they are known for IT which is a major-major breakthrough at the moment. Otherwise we have a lot of restaurant. We are like the Lebanese. You know the Lebanese are very popular in Nigeria on the food and beverages spaces. For us Indians, food and beverages is something that comes naturally to us.
The Shiro Executives with the GDA at the Shiro Beach Bar
Are you married? 
Yes, I am married.
Are you a vegetarian, you almost look like one?
No, no, I am completely non-vegetarian. I don’t need anything vegetarian.
How long have you been in this service?
I have been in this business for 15 years. I love the business because it is all about service and dedication.
Do you have a philosophy?
Mr. Bawar in a handshake with the GDA
Yes, I believe you can only live life once and you should live it to the fullest. My philosophy is living it to the fullest. Let it be eventful and full of activities.



Why Shiro is leading on Lagos IslandUNNI KRISHNAN (Operations Manager)
UNNI KRISHTAN gives the GDA a welcoming smile

What is the secret of Shiro Restaurant by the pool side of Elegushi. What has earned you such a massive reputation in six months?
UNNI to Asabeafrika....'At Shiro we are service sensitive'
I believe it simply has to do with our bearing to hospitality and we have this sense of service that we always ensure that we deliver to customers. The first one is the quality of the food, the quality of the service and right quality of our tradition in terms of cocktails and the ambience of service. The second is that we have a team of managers that ensures that every customer that walks in goes out with a splendid memory when they walk out. Your splendid memory will always bring you back
Your company also runs Hard Rock Café, why is Hard Rock Café becoming Number 1?
When the topic is Shiro, UNNI speaks like this and Bawar looks
Hard Rock Café as a concern is basically known all round the world and they are originally from America and they are into American cuisine. The kind of food they serve is American food and lots of young people will love to come back because of the kind of food they serve, the kind of drinks and  they love the American music, rock, soul and Hip-Hop and especially in Nigeria, they also play Nigerian music. That is for Hard Rock Café but here we only do Hip-Hop, R & B and a lot of Naija music. We don’t do too much Rock but our food is very Asian based, our cocktails are very Asian based but the music, the ambience and the feel is dedicated to Nigerians. Hard Rock Café is in good partnership with Shiro. While Shiro tends to the elderly and matured crowd, Hard Rock Café tends to the young minds.
What is your clientele ratio like for Hard Rock Café and Shiro Restaurant?
Mr. UNNI speaks with the GDA on Shiro
For Hard Rock, I will say about 80% are Nigerians and 20% expatriates. But here in Shiro, you will see the reverse mix, 80% expatriates and about 20% Nigerians.
What is your philosophy of life?
The GDA with Mr. UNNI and Mr. BAWAR

I am into hospitality, I believe in passion. That is why I have been in this industry for the past 15 years. So, I love to do this. My philosophy is passion for work.
Do you have a word for our readers on Asabeafrika Blog? Readers who will love to patronize Shiro?
Mr. Unni after the encounter with the GDA
The Shiro Atmosphere at night
The custom of hospitality speaks on the wall as well
Even the walls displays art
Here, service maters
The Boys & Girls of Shiro
The Shiro Bar Team
The Shiro Team
The Lights are Shiro red when the evening falls
A Shiro Bar attendant serving his guest
The Shiro Bar Team
Drinks are served here with premium attention
DJ Jara meets the GDA
Artistic Display Indian  Hospitality
The GDA meets the Deejays
A wine filled section of the Bar: Chose your choice
An art description of Tara, the goddess of Wealth & Good luck
The Full Bar @ Night
A Nigerian & Indian Deejay in the House
Culture @ Play with Hospitality
Patrons enjoying their evening at the Inner- Bar Section
The Sea-side Bar section at night
The GDA with Mr. Unni & Mr. Bawar
Everyone can come to Shiro, I am always there. My name is Unni, so anytime, any grace, any assistance you can always reach me. We are also on the social media like Shiro Lagos, in face book as Shiro Lagos, on Instagram we are the same. You can always make reservations on Face book and Instagram, you could contact the management and book for service.
A Cultural Section of the Restaurant
We are always here to serve you.
Thanks for speaking to Asabeafrika
Thanks for visiting. Our pleasure to have you again.

Gbenga Dan Asabe

Africa's Number One Celebrity Encounter Blog

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