The Best Hotels for Foodies in and Around Muscat

Chinese Tea Ceremony at China Mood | © Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel
Chinese Tea Ceremony at China Mood | © Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel
Photo of Amar Grover
9 June 2021

As Oman pursues ambitious plans to boost foreign tourism, more and more upscale hotels are springing up in the capital. The city has a cosmopolitan and relatively liberal outlook, while its best hotels often double as social hubs for the moneyed and well-heeled. Consequently, there’s a decent range of culinary options in Muscat, especially Asian and Middle Eastern fare. Even vegetarians will find something to enjoy here.

Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa

Resort, Hotel
Map View
Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa
Courtesy of Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa / Expedia | Courtesy of Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa / Expedia
East of the capital, on Oman’s rugged coastline, the Shangri-la’s twin wings – the ‘Oasis’ and the ‘Town’ – face the Gulf of Oman across emerald-green, palm-dotted lawns. In keeping with its resort credentials, there are eight restaurants and cafes, plus four lounge bars, with cuisines that span the globe. Al Tanoor’s Arabian Gulf cuisine – with a traditional Omani atmosphere – heads the list, while Bait Al Bahr specialises in fine seafood. There’s also Spanish tapas and paella washed down with sangria, Southeast Asian street food and an American-style burger joint.

The Chedi Muscat

Hotel
Map View
The Chedi Muscat
Courtesy of The Chedi Muscat / Expedia
The Chedi is a stylish resort property spread over 21 acres (8ha) in Al Ghubrah Ash Shamaliyyah, with three swimming pools – one, the Middle East’s longest, clocks in at over 100m (328ft). The hotel’s elegant design, with subtle Omani touches, oozes glamour and sophistication. Six restaurants encompass Arabian, Indian, Asian and Western cuisine. The ‘cabana’ restaurants feature Japanese and Asian dishes, plus modern tapas. Those with a craving for afternoon tea can indulge in the antique-filled Lobby Lounge.

Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz-Carlton Hotel

Resort
Map View
Dim Sum Collection at China Mood
Courtesy of Al Bustan Palace / Expedia
The vast, domed lobby of this five-star hotel – where guests take afternoon tea – certainly impresses, even when compared with the other monumental buildings lining the Al Bustan coast. Backed by stark hills, with an enviable location overlooking a sandy bay, a recent refurbishment has upped its game and family appeal. China Mood is among the country’s finest Chinese restaurants while fresh seafood (and picturesque views) dominate the Beach Pavilion Bar & Grill. If you’re after an international buffet, head to Al Khiran and tuck in on the new two-level terrace. For gourmet appetizers and cool jazz, there’s the Al Maha Jazz Lounge.

Alila Jabal Akhdar

Resort, Hotel
Map View
Alila Jabal Akhdar Muscat
Courtesy of Alila Jabal Akhdar / Expedia
High in the central folds of the Al-Hajar Mountains, in the Jabal Akhdar region, this remarkable hotel fuses traditional Omani masonry construction with fortress-like undertones. Its design is modern, pared-down and sustainable whilst the location is spectacular, riven with valleys and gorges. Juniper, its sole restaurant, covers an eclectic range from Goan fish curry to Wagyu beef with truffle purée via Omani lobster and Scottish salmon. For a romantic experience, try private dining under the stars in an arbour or on the stargazing deck.

Al Falaj Hotel

Hotel
Map View
An authentic Japanese Dining Journey at Tokyo Taro, The Falaj Hotel Muscat
Courtesy of The Falaj Hotel, Tokyo Taro / Expedia
Around 2km (1.2mi) southwest of the city’s Mutrah Corniche, the Al Falaj is a modern high-rise property aimed at business and leisure travellers. Rooms are stylish in an understated sort of way; amenities include two pools and a tennis court. The Souq Café, with Omani, Indian and international cuisine, loosely evokes a market vibe with its under-pergola seating, while the 8th-floor Tokyo Taro restaurant features a teppanyaki grill along with private Japanese-style booths, with themed interiors to match.

Kempinski Hotel

Hotel, Luxury
Map View
Kempinski Hotel Muscat
Courtesy of Kempinski Hotel / Expedia
This luxury beach hotel, just north of the airport in the Al Mouj neighbourhood, features a bewildering array of rooms and suites along with three pools, a tennis court and a kids’ club. There’s also an 18-hole golf course within a five-minute drive. Dining ranges from European and Levantine at The Kitchen to Thai street food at Soi Soi, which also has a takeaway menu if you’re planning a picnic or a day trip. Bukhara features northwest Indian cuisine with extras such as grilled Omani lobster.

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  • W Muscat

    Hotel
    Map View
    W Muscat
    Courtesy of W Muscat / Expedia
    Located in the upscale Shatti Al Qurum neighbourhood, the sea-facing W Muscat features vibrant accommodation with playful use of colour and decorative motifs that ripple across carpets and furniture. Char restaurant features steaks and grills, while Ba Ban serves up a Shanghai take on authentic Chinese food. For those seeking healthier options, Harvest focuses on seasonal local and organic ingredients.

    Crowne Plaza Muscat

    Chain Hotel
    Map View
    5f4e67e8 Crowne Plaza Muscat
    Courtesy of Crowne Plaza Muscat / Expedia
    The Crowne Plaza lords over Qurum Beach from its enviable clifftop spot in the upscale Qurum Heights neighbourhood. It’s an elegant place with modern rooms, twin-deck infinity pools and squash courts. Shiraz, a Persian and Omani fine-dining restaurant, tops its culinary offerings with shuwa – slow-cooked lamb wrapped in banana leaves. Come Prima takes you on a gastronomic tour of Italy, with dishes like lobster tagliatelle and duck ragu with black truffle.

    Fraser Suites Muscat

    Serviced Apartment
    Map View
    d6eb7a9d Fraser Suites Muscat
    Courtesy of Fraser Suites Muscat / Expedia
    Near Muscat’s western edge, the Fraser’s suite-like serviced apartments have a businesslike feel. Ranging from one to three bedrooms, all have fully-equipped kitchens and mod cons. Those without the will to cook, fear not: the in-house Oak restaurant features Middle Eastern and international cuisine. Its seasonal menu comprises many of the region’s favourite dishes, typically concluded with umm ali: a bread or pastry pudding with nuts and raisins, best washed down with tea. Choose between an evening buffet or a la carte.

    Grand Millennium Muscat

    Chain Hotel
    Map View
    68e93429 Grand Millennium Muscat
    Courtesy of Grand Millennium Muscat / Expedia
    Alongside the Muscat Grand Mall, the Grand Millennium’s strikingly illuminated facade screens elegantly luxurious rooms and suites. Top of the culinary offerings is Bahriyat, a specialty seafood restaurant with much of its produce originating in Muscat’s fish market. The subtle nautical theme is headed up by the twelve-seat ‘Captain’s Table’ with a bespoke menu and exclusive service. Back on dry land, Pasha café offers fine Turkish coffee with traditional roasts and flavoured alternatives, plus snacks.
    These recommendations were updated on June 9, 2021 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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