Last summer, Seasons restaurant at Lee Gardens 2 served its final meal, giving over the space to Maggie & Rose and the recently opened gastropub, The Leah. But chef Olivier Elzer never melted away into obscurity; with The St Regis Hong Kong, he’s back—heading up the hotel’s plush high-end restaurant, L’Envol.
The name refers to “taking flight”, and it’s not difficult to see how this has been an immediate upgrade: the restaurant is a a warm and inviting space that simply oozes luxury and all its trappings. A pale cream and gold palette is subtly disrupted with rich jewel tones: jade and dark emerald-hued marble, a whisper of mauve and inky blues on the carpeting, bright green moss arrangements. Other details, from the gold accents to the perfectly plumped cushions and handsome herringbone wood flooring speak to the DNA of the St Regis brand, as envisioned by celebrated designer Andre Fu.
The wide open kitchen anchors the room, and guests in the first section of the restaurant can have a view into the inner workings of the restaurant. Perusing the menu, you’ll find a small a la carte offering, a lengthy chef’s signatures menu, and also a four-course “Sur-Mesure” (tailored) menu that staff describe to us as offering dishes decided upon by the chef on the day—dishes that even they do not know and are usually not on the main menu. After much persuasion we concede and opt for this “blind-folded culinary voyage”, excited to experience some inspired dishes by Elzer.
Every table begins with a miniature galaxy of snacks, along with bread and butter (one pat of the latter flavoured with caviar, the other with champagne). The simple joy of a fresh, peppery radish enrobed in butter and served on ice was introduced to me at Seasons restaurant, and I welcomed its return at L’Envol—this time, the butter was infused with black olive for an extra dimension of flavour.