The Way We Roll
As the first European colony in East Asia, Macau has a place in history few other cities can lay claim to. Over the course of several centuries, the Portuguese shaped and refined the city, bringing their culture and their food. By doing so they altered the historical trajectory of these south China shores forever. The glitzy Conrad Macao is a present day marriage of Portuguese sophistication and Asian opulence. The allure of the city’s bright lights is pretty obvious, here both to high rollers at the casino and well-heeled Koreans on holiday. The property is located on the Cotai strip, home to a vast collection of luxury hotels, all of which are connected with through a network of covered walkways. So in reality, one could go casino hopping in a day without having to venture outdoors.
Those staying at one of the 654 rooms (rates from RM780++) at the Conrad Macao enjoy top-of-range amenities. Furnishings in these spacious sanctuaries are understatedly luxurious with classy Oriental flourishes. A glamorous bonus: the Shanghai Tang range of toiletries. Bathrooms are spacious and elegant; the showers are one of the most user-friendly in an industry keen on fixtures that require someone with an engineering degree to understand and operate.
There is a lot on offer food-wise, too. Over at Chiado, celebrity chef Henrique Sá Pessoa’s outpost at Sands Cotai Central, the flavours stay faithful to its sister restaurant, the Michelin-starred Alma in Portugal. Here, the country’s legendary bacalhau, dried and salted cod, steals the show when cooked with egg yolk and onion puree.
Other dishes this casual yet stylist restaurant does best are the roasted pumpkin soup with coconut cream, prawns and almonds; the locally inspired king prawn cataplana with sweet potato perfumed with lemongrass and ginger; along with the tenderly cooked suckling pork with sweet potato purée, pak choy and orange. The east meets west combination of ingredients is a delicious nod to the city’s first settlers, and one of the many reasons to visit.