Restaurant decor can make or break your dinner, inspiring reactions anywhere from “blah” to “this place is so cool that I never want to leave.” Food tourism is a real thing, and if you’re one of those people who plans out how to use your vacation days based on what and where you can eat, we’ve got some suggestions for you. Of course, the quality of the cuisine matters a whole lot, but there’s nothing like a beautiful setting to make it really pop. So whether you’re headed on a honeymoon for your horoscope, picking out an amazing babymoon destination or just taking a regular ol’ vacation, here are some places to check out if dining in style is priority numero uno on your itinerary.
1. Splashes, Laguna Beach, California: If you find yourself in the hometown of LC and Kristin Cavallari, this beachfront restaurant is a must-visit. The ocean views are insane, and they serve locally sourced seafood for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Yum! (Photo via Splashes)
2. Grand Restaurant, Grand Hotel Kronenhof, Pontresina, Switzerland: Want to feel like you’re in a real-life fairy tale? Visit the Grand Hotel Kronenhof’s restaurant, nestled in the Swiss Alps. The hotel itself was built in 1848, so there’s some serious history here, and it’s been recently renovated and restored to its full glory. For a decadent, ultra-traditional experience, this place is worth adding to any continental itinerary. (Photo via Grand Hotel Kronenhof)
3. Tori Tori, Mexico City, Mexico: You might not expect to eat Japanese cuisine in Mexico, but not only is Tori Tori one of the best restaurants in Mexico City, it’s also a crazy cool work of architecture. Once a house in a fairly residential neighborhood, the hotspot was renovated in a Japanese-influenced, totally revolutionary style. The restaurant is known for awesome cocktails and, of course, delicious fresh sushi. (Photo via Paúl Rivera)
4. Bar Le Dokhan’s, Paris, France: Located in Le Dokhan’s, a Tribute Portfolio Hotel in Paris, this bar-restaurant is the ultimate in Parisian chic. It was the first Champagne bar in the city (fancy!), and the sommeliers who work there travel to the Champagne region of France regularly to snag the best varieties for guests. Aside from being a place to relax and drink some bubbly, the spot is known for its delicious breakfast, served daily. (Photo via Le Dokhan’s)
5. Acquerello at San Clemente Palace Kempinski, Venice, Italy: Situated in a hotel that was once a 15th-century monastery occupying a private island in a Venetian lagoon, it’s fair to say that Acquerello’s surroundings are pretty spectacular. Here, you can enjoy classic Italian cuisine while admiring the Venetian skyline and drinking in some super gorgeous sunsets. (Photo via San Clemente Palace Kempinski)
6. Turandot Palace, Moscow, Russia: So yeah, this place is literally a palace that has been converted into a restaurant. It’s incredibly opulent and insanely beautiful. Plus, you can enjoy live classical music while you eat in potentially the most luxurious space you’ll ever encounter. The decor may be old-world European, but the cuisine is Chinese-Japanese fusion — and somehow it all works together, possibly because you’re so in awe of your surroundings. (Photo via Turandot Palace)
7. Leo’s Oyster Bar, San Francisco, California: Welcome to hipster paradise. Leo’s is one of the most perfectly decorated places we’ve ever seen, from the fern-printed wallpaper to the contrasty, checkerboard-style floor tiling. The overall effect is a totally retro feel that will make you forget what decade you’re in. As the name implies, oysters are the main culinary attraction here, but there are also a plethora of other seafood-centric options to try. (Photo via Douglas Friedman)
8. Sirocco, Bangkok, Thailand: Plain and simple, Sirocco has the best view of Bangkok that you’re going to find. While you enjoy the warm breeze that the restaurant is named for, consider splurging on the chef’s tasting menu. Fun fact: This restaurant is the world’s highest al fresco dining destination. (Photo via Sirocco)
9. Bistro Sur, Buenos Aires, Argentina: Designed by the famed Philippe Starck, this place is like a fantasy wonderland and restaurant all rolled into one. Seriously, where else can you dine surrounded by unicorns? (Photo via Bistro Sur)
10. Eberly, Austin, Texas: This beautiful concept space — which includes a dining room, a study and Greenwich Village’s historic Cedar Tavern bar imported all the way from NYC — just opened in October to much (deserved) hype. If you find yourself in ATX, definitely treat yourself to a meal in one of its three gorgeous spaces. Oh, and there’s a rooftop terrace, too Could this place be more heavenly? (Photo via Julia Keim)
Which of these restaurants takes the top spot on your must-visit list? Let us know @BritandCo!