Consumers in China are dining at nicer restaurants — even if it costs $500 a person

by | May 5, 2023 | Financial

A restaurant in the Xintiandi shopping area in Shanghai on March 25, 2023. The overall number of new fine dining restaurants in China declined from 2021 to 2022, but the number of new venues doubled in 2021 from 2020, said Tang Yan, a Black Pearl representative.Bloomberg | Bloomberg | Getty ImagesBEIJING — A new restaurant scene is growing more popular across China: fine dining.Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, a brand called Lu Style opened four new restaurants in the last three years in Beijing and Shanghai.At that store, Lu Style said, business brings in 4 million yuan ($579,710) a month. Meals cost about 735 yuan per person, according to reviews on China’s Yelp-like Dianping app. Judging from more than 1,500 comments, users were most enthusiastic about the service, taste of the food and “elegant” design.That’s how restaurants are competing in a country whose culture emphasizes good food — and where the global trend of spending on experiences is taking hold.Since Lu Style launched in 2016, more people no longer focus on just being able to eat, said Tian Junfeng, director of operations. Instead, he expects demand for social spaces will be greater. The brand has seven restaurants — including a soft open this year in collaboration with a Shanghai art gallery. Lu Style’s cuisine comes from the province of Shandong, including many of the ingredients themselves. The restaurants offer seasonal menus and meticulous design — one outlet in Beijing claims the peony bush th …

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