Food for Thought

What the hell…? you might be thinking, particularly if you’ve sampled the plush pleasures of the Ritz-Carlton in its iconic Marina Bay, Singapore location. What on earth was going on?

The set-up:

A group of diners was invited to a four-course meal at the Ritz-Carlton hotel, with dishes prepared by renowned Italian-born chef Massimo Pasquarelli.

Lucky bleeps! Right? As well as Chef Pasquarelli’s cuisine, the hotel boasts a 4,200-piece museum-quality art collection and panoramic views of the city from its 32nd-floor Club Lounge – in other words, a stunning setting for a memorable meal.

The dinner unfolded around the guests with the precision of a well-starched white napkin.

Until, that is, they picked up the incredibly artistic-looking cutlery to tuck into the food.

And that’s when things got difficult – although the knives, forks and spoons looked like the ultimate in design chic, they were really hard to eat with.

The sting:

The cutlery had in fact been created by McCann Health for Smile Asia, a non-profit organization which specializes in treatment and care for the more than 100,000 children born each year in Asia with cleft lip, cleft palate and other facial deformities.

“The Cleft Collection allows you and I to experience the struggles children with cleft lip and palate face at every meal,” said Vincent Yeow, chairman and founder of Smile Asia. “We hope that with this initiative, we will be able to get more people to support the cause of helping children across Asia living with these conditions.”

The takeaway:

A cleverly thought-out scenario that unfolds at a sedate pace to remind us of the true meaning of luxury eating.

What do you think? Does it make you change the way you see your food? And won’t you remember the Ritz-Carlton more for this campaign than if it had only been promoting the hotel’s luxury cuisine?


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