If the heat and noise of Cairo has you yearning for waving palms, sparkling turquoise water and a soothing breeze, head along to Aqua for a fine dining experience in Downtown and be transported. Set in a large, tranquil garden patio with a spacious designer pool, Aqua is the next best thing to an exotic getaway.
Type of Cuisine & Signature Dishes
A thoughtfully constructed menu of appetizers, salads, sandwiches, pasta, pizza, mains and desserts, all elevated to gourmet status.
Signature dishes include the Ritz Carlton Burger, Crispy Shrimp Wrap, Um Ali. Everything on offer should be superlative though, based on the consistently high quality we have become accustomed to at this Nile-side property.
The picturesque, invigorating vibe of Aqua had our thoughts going straight to salad, so as soon as we had made ourselves comfortable we fired ahead and shared the signature Aqua Salad. The crisp, fresh mix of baby greens, pineapple, mango, avocado, dried cherries and dried cranberries was accented with a light drizzle of citrus dressing and primed our palates for the following plates. The presentation was simple and elegant, the portion perfect for two, so would be a must for us on future visits.
The Ritz Carlton Burger and Chicken Quesadilla Wrap came highly recommended, so we opted to share both. Again, they proved that simple, classic fare could be stellar when prepared with skill and flair. The burger was perfectly cooked to our liking, moist and juicy, flavor-packed beef, grilled aged cheddar cheese, tasty slices of mushroom, beef bacon and caramelized onion, presented on a large bun with a lettuce and tomato garnish. Condiments in the form of ketchup, mayo and mustard in dainty individual sealed jars came alongside, letting us add to our personal taste. The fries that came with our burger were as close to perfection as we have seen, and came in a really generous portion. There was no question of counting calories!
The Chicken Quesadilla wrap was tasty, and as with the burger, artistically presented on a wooden tray. Garnishes were arranged so we could add as we wished and with just the right amount of spice, along with the cheese and chicken, every bite hit the spot.
Don’t bypass the desserts. We loved the Key Lime Pie with raspberry sauce, and the Chocolate Parfait was decadence on a plate. A definite inclusion on our next visit.
Other Menu items that Appealed & Beverage Options
Ah, where to start. Maybe a classic Shrimp Cocktail? Followed by New York Strips, with asparagus and a rosemary sauce? Or the BBQ Chicken Pizza with smoked Gouda cheese, red onion and basil? Everything on the menu looked appealing.
Beverage options include fresh juices, smoothies, hot beverages, (local beer and wine outside of Ramadan)
Décor & Ambience
The area is dominated by the pool and beautiful palm trees, seating ranges from lounge style discreetly arranged on the patio to smart, outdoor dining tables and seating in Aqua itself. Cabanas are laid out at the far end of the garden, making it a refreshing oasis for anyone wanting to beat the city heat. As the pool closes at sunset, the vista then gradually takes on a fairyland feel as subtle lighting changes the mood.
Ambience is welcoming, professional staff ensures that service is unobtrusive, allowing guests to feel pampered without undue formality. You can’t help but feel relaxed. We loved the background music, creating just the right state of mind.
Clientele Mix & Price Range
Couples, business colleagues, hotel guests and a surprising number of local diners who obviously appreciate the chilled atmosphere and great service. A spot where even a solo diner could feel relaxed and at home.
Nile Ritz Carlton is a 5-Star property, so prices reflect that, but with such great food and impeccable service it is worth treating yourself. Mind you, the menu has some quite affordable options, so it needn’t set you back too much.
Opening hours: 12 pm – 11 -pm.
Ramadan Hours: 4 pm – 11 pm.
Address: 1113 Corniche El Nil, Tahrir Square, Cairo
Tel: 02 2577 8899 / 02 2580 2400