The Dubai based restaurant with a family atmosphere and exceptional Italian cuisine – Emirates Woman


It’s no secret that there are a plethora of superlative restaurants to dine in in Dubai, but finding something that looks like family can be a rarity.

The Bella Restaurant, which was launched at the end of last year, is one of those restaurants that guarantees exceptional Italian cuisine, also offering excellent dishes and excellent service, drawn from classic Italian hospitality creating a real local atmosphere.

Bella’s restaurant manager, Stefano Bassanese, leads the way in exceptional service. Placing itself at the heart of the restaurant, Bassanese ensures that its guests don’t just have dinner, they have a complete dining experience from the moment they walk in the door until the moment it’s time to leave.

As he says, at the base of the work that he and his team embody, there is “integrity, values ​​and culture”

Emirati woman sit down with Bassanese to discover the true essence of Bella and what it really takes to be successful in creating an exceptional dining experience from start to finish.

Can you tell us about your professional background?

It is safe to say that hospitality runs in my blood. Four generations before me ran a family restaurant. I was born with a white jacket and black pants – this is what waiters traditionally wore in the late 1970s when I first walked through the door of my family’s restaurant.

I then traveled around the world and worked on four different continents for some of the most prestigious brands in the hospitality industry.

What prompted you to enter the F&B industry?

Since 1977, I started spending my summers and school vacations with my dad and his waiters in white jackets and black pants. I was extremely impressed with the beauty of the service, starting with the silver cutlery, the wine poured into the crystal glasses and the linen tablecloths.

What do you like about what you do?

I love Bella because my team and I have established the basics of this profession which are: integrity, values ​​and culture. Every decision is made based on what will make the guest feel welcome at Bella’s place.

What finally brought you to Dubai?

Even with companies in Italy, in 1998 I started to travel the world, following my wife Lorena, who in 1996 won the prize for the best hairdresser of the world championship. From there, 20 years have passed on three different continents and now I am discovering the fourth.

How is the food industry here different from other places in the world?

I think there is no substantial difference because it is about emotions. I know that working in different outlets with Italian cuisine and everything that belongs to Italy is in one way or another fascinating for everyone in the world because it is the most diverse country who exist.

Bella opened at the end of last year. Can you tell us the story of the restaurant?

Named after its owner, the Bella is Dubai’s premier Italian dining destination. Traditional and attentive in terms of service, contemporary in its interpretation of popular cuisine, bold and disruptive in its atmosphere. Bella is a fascinating social hotspot with stunning views of the Dubai Canal, the city skyline and the iconic Burj Khalifa.

With its relaxed but elegant decoration, Bella pays homage to the great Italian classics imbued with light Asian influences.

What sets Bella apart from other restaurants in Dubai?

Bella is a constantly imperfect outlet, every day, with passion and enthusiasm, we improve ourselves, with the hope, one day, of achieving perfection.

What do you think the hero dishes are at Bella?

All the ingredients are the protagonists and the hero of our dishes and what makes them special is the preparation made with passion in our kitchen by our chefs and finishing them in front of the guests. Giving an extra touch that personalizes the culinary journey, giving the customer the feeling of being back in the 80s.

How did the opening of a restaurant go in the midst of a pandemic?

It is in difficult times that we are called to give the best of ourselves, to reinvent ourselves, and in these times the magic can work. A rainbow of unexpected opportunities often arises during important moments, in fact… BELLA is born! Our goal will be to create memories, special moments that our guests will always cherish. We want to bring attention and love back to the game, putting our guests at the center of the conversation and making sure Bella becomes that haven of comfort and joy, like a home away from home!

What is a typical day at Bella like for you?

No day is the same for me, although there are definitely a few things that are part of my daily routine. Every morning starts with following the reviews our customers leave on TripAdvisor – that’s my addiction. I like to see how Bella is doing and sort out anything negative as soon as possible. Due to my role at Bella, I often see my name popping up in reviews and luckily they’re generally great, giving me a boost for the day ahead.

The first and probably the most important meeting of the day, a meeting with Abigail our CRM to go over reservations – we like to make sure everyone is well looked after at Bella, so if there’s a special occasion we want this guest to feel like a king. Then I go to see Chef Alessandro, to tell him that I love him, it’s not a joke. Our relationship is amazing. We are the perfect duo and have worked together for years. Sure, things can get hectic during the service, but we tell each other every day that we love each other – then he tells me to leave his kitchen!

The rest of the day is a balance between meeting with my team and spending time on the floor on duty. I’m still nervous even now, it’s the sweetest feeling to welcome new guests like they are our long lost families! That special touch of magic is what people love the most about Bella.

What obstacles have you encountered during your career?

Navigating the restaurant and hospitality industry with the difficulties that Covid-19 has presented has been the most difficult obstacle of my career, but it has given me the opportunity to learn to adapt. at every obstacle. They say you are never too old to learn new skills and learn how to tailor operations within government restrictions to keep my team and our guests safe while enjoying their experience in Bella, was both stimulating and rewarding.

Across the spectrum, what are the milestones?

The greatest honor of my career has been to be named a Knight of the Italian Republic. This distinction was for particular merit in promoting friendly relations and cooperation between Hong Kong and Italy and promoting ties with Italy. This appointment was given by the President of the Italian Republic, Giorgio Napolitano.

What do you see next for Bella Dubai?

Bella is just getting started. Over the next few months, we will be bringing a new experience to our guests in the Bella Lounge with a full entertainment program. At the same time, we will soon be opening Bella’s private dining room with bespoke experiences with Chef Alessandro Miceli. This “secret room” will only be available to a limited number of guests a few days a week and will be a fully personalized experience for them, providing them with a dining experience that they can only get from Bella.

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Images: Instagram Restaurant Bella

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