WATCH: Iconic Bengal Lounge at Empress Hotel serves its last curry buffet this weekend
It’s the end of an era in the B.C. Capital, as the iconic Bengal Lounge at the Empress Hotel serves its last curry buffet and cocktails on Saturday evening.
The Bengal Lounge has been in a part of Victoria for decades.
The colonial-style lounge was inspired by Queen Victoria’s role as Empress of India.
It’s a throwback to a time when the sun never set on the British Empire.
The lounge even has a entire skin of a Bengal tiger — a gift from the King and Queen of Siam when they visited the hotel in the late 1940s.
The landmark is known for its popular curry buffet but with the Fairmont Empress undergoing a massive $30 to $50 million renovation, the space is being re-purposed.
“The Bengal is not going away — the tiger will remain, it’s not for sale, and the sign and everything is staying but what we’re doing is changing it into prominent social space,” says new Fairmont Empress hotel general manager Indu Brar. “You can say you got married in the Bengal or had your retirement party here.”
Petition to save Bengal Lounge garnered thousands of signatures
Thousands of people signed a petition to try and save the Bengal, which may have led to the space not being completely eliminated.
The Bengal has been fully booked for weeks as people have one last meal in the lounge.
Phase one of the Empress construction project will be finished in May and phase two will begin in the Fall.