Les Amis closes to renovate kitchen

French fine-dining restaurant Les Amis at Shaw Centre will close for a month from Sunday for renovations. The 21-year-old restaurant will undergo its first major kitchen overhaul.

Les Amis, ranked 13 in this year's Asia's 50 Best Restaurants list, will spend about $1.5 million in its fourth renovation since it opened in 1994. Its most recent renovation was in 2007.

Les Amis Group spokesman Raymond Lim, 36, says the renovation is vital to cope with increasing business.

The main addition to the 1,340 sq ft kitchen will be a customised Charvet stove-top island imported from France and designed by the restaurant's executive chef, Sebastien Lepinoy.

Mr Lim says: "The stove is the heart and engine of a kitchen in a fine-dining restaurant. Over the years, we have made touch-ups to the restaurant's interiors, but a kitchen overhaul is needed to cope with increasing orders and help the chef elevate his performance." The restaurant will be replacing its refrigeration and storage units.

It will also increase its current seating capacity of 76 to 100. Its white wine cellar will be moved to the first level to carve up more space for tables on the mezzanine level. Two private dining rooms will be added to the existing four.

The restaurant's interiors, with marble flooring and teak wall fittings, will remain intact. However, the wallpaper, carpet and furniture will be replaced.

While the culinary direction of the menu will not change, diners can expect more dishes.

Mr Lim calls the renovation "an investment in its reputation". He says: "Les Amis has been an institution in Singapore. While we are not as trendy and sexy as Restaurant Andre, our customers can still expect a sense of familiarity and quiet elegance dining."

The restaurant re-opens on April 16.

This article was first published on March 11, 2015.
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