I didn’t think this existed in Colombia!

2nd June 2016 update: Unforunately, like many other places in Bogotá, where the food and beverage business is highly competitive, Magnolio is now closed!  The beautiful house is still standing, now occupied by a Galician restaurant that is yet to open.

Garden Area

OK, those who think that I give excessive coverage on food please bear with me. I have given Bogotá enough negative publicity recently. It’s time to do some justice to this city! Just like every other big city, there are both good and bad sides in Bogotá. One of the things that I never would have expected was Bogotá’s restaurant scene. You really wouldn’t think that you were in Colombia when dining at some of these places! (At least that’s what it turned out for me, perhaps with some false expectation and perception of the country..) It feels more like dining in a New York restaurant that has got only Spanish-speaking waiters, with a service standard that come from those Swiss hospitality management schools (I am embarrassed by the fact that service standards here are better than those in HK).. 


Stairway to Bar

Perhaps it’s something to do with the demographics of Bogotá, ‘fusion’ dominates the restaurant scene. So there we were, at Magnolio where you could discern the cuisine only from the cover of the menu that says ‘Peroni – Italia’. However, you are first greeted by 20 tapas on the first page.. And because Bogotáns are so crazy about hamburgers, every restaurant, even if it isn’t a burger place, thinks it should have at least 1 hamburger choice, so we were given 10 options. Were it not for the few pastas you wouldn’t think you’re eating Italian! Ok, from the photos you may conclude that we ate fast food at an elegant restaurant. I guess that’s the contradiction you’d get here in Bogotá..



VIP Floor
The restaurant occupies the ground floor of a 3-storey Victorian-House, with a bar on the first floor and a  VIP floor on the top. The whole garden area that surrounds the house is also laid with tables, enveloped by a vertical garden. A contemporary décor with art deco furnishing is juxtaposed with eclectic animal decoration motifs (such as the random full height deer..) and 18thcentury glamour. Loungey music played by a live DJ has headroom tall enough to defuse the energetic volume. You find yourself sitting at a spacious table so there is no risk in knocking off any dish, eavesdropping on your neighbour or knocking over the person behind you when you need to go to the loo (er.. I did hit the glowing deer wall-mount sculpture when I got up..). Waiters in black starched aprons serve up dishes in an attentive and unpretentious manner to customers who are dressed in the latest fashion and carrying the Yayoi Kusama’s latest collection from LV.. You get what I am talking about.

‘Tapas’ – octopus
Blue Cheese Lamb Burger

One comment

  1. […] are potholes running across the whole width of roads that are in desperate of need maintenance, but restaurants like the above that are super stylish and near to perfect. World class museums live next to […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: