Arab Palace

51 West Zhongshan Road

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We went in by mistake, it’s a stone throw away from the real mosque. The waitresses all dressed up like a doll with high heels. The French BBQ on the fourth floor is ¥138 per person. What would they offer I did wonder. The fifth floor Chinese is all (or mostly) private dinner rooms, without menu.
“Is this an officials dinning spot?” I asked the skinny waiter with the glasses.
“Yes.” He replied. He then brought in an iPad which contains a menu.
The tea is ¥36. The flowers looked fake.

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I almost walked into men’s because it’s more attractive and up front. There isn’t a soap. When I went out asking, the first waiter told me,
“We don’t have.”
Another waiter came out the bathroom told me the same.
I was bemused. An expensive restaurant doesn’t provide soap in the bathrooms!

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I gave up. As I was walking back to my room, passing by an opened door, there were three staff, two were busy with filling a soap bottle and the third, looking like a manger stood by, watching.
My hands got washed with soap. Great.
We ordered:
hand pull lamb, mostly tough
Veggie … Came mashed with potato. When I questioned, the waiter, a girl could not answer (it’s her first day). So the manger was called, who told me that the picture is just the veggie and didn’t show how it’s cooked and served.
Quick wit and a good lie.

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Interesting. Many veggie dishes have few ways of cooking it. For example, with garlic, onion and scallion, etc.

During the meal, the waitress waited outside of the closed door. Never once attempted to change our plates.

The slight finer points of service (which we take for granted) are decidedly absent. The waiters are poorly trained (or no training at all). Which is an indication that China has prospered and waiting is a job that are beneath them. Not many people needed it to survive.

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