Let’s talk food, shall we?

My love for food has been a constant in-house joke among my friends, anyone who knows me well knows I love my food and with lots of chili for that matter. It therefore goes without saying the minute I identify an eatery that serves good food and with good quality chili then I’m sold and that’s precisely what happened with The Arbor.

The Arbor management was kind enough to share with us who they are and there signature dish, which they promise their clientele absolutely loves! So next time you ask someone “Lets do Lunch?” be sure to head over there and try The Arbor Laksa!

  1. Why the name Arbor, how did it all begin?

The Arbor essentially means a shady garden alcove which is formed by trees merging and when we first got the property the first thing that captured our eyes is the merging of the two big trees in the middle of the garden. We fell in love with the garden and had to find a name that truly captures the feel and look of the place, hence why we chose The Arbor.

The Arbor has a very interesting beginning; when we first got the property, it was mainly to manufacture our body care products called D’vine (which we still manufacture at the back of the property) however we felt the property had such a beautiful garden it was a waste to not do anything with it, so we decided to have a small eatery nothing fancy just great food and a space to enjoy the garden. Little did we know that it would eventually become a full-fledge restaurant! It truly has been an amazing adventure; every day we learn new things about the industry.


  1. What type of cuisine do you offer?

We offer a variety of cuisine which I believe is quite difficult to find in any other restaurant in Nairobi; when we were creating the menu, we knew we wanted to have all the foods that we love to eat; we therefore have what we would like to call an eclectic menu, where you can get anything from a Pad Thai to a classic Beef Burger. We always ask our clients to follow us on our social media platforms as we also do fantastic monthly specials.


  1. Our order took about 20mins to get to the table is it because orders are freshly made?

That is a definite yes. The concept behind The Arbor is that we are not a fast food joint, we are a garden café with beautiful shops selling locally made items. We want our customers to come and embrace the whole concept and not just have a meal and leave. We want them to enjoy our excellent customer service, take in the beauty of the garden and basically just chill and enjoy The Arbor. We do as well make everything fresh; from our burger buns to our pasta and even with our laksa paste, we do it on the day to keep it tasting fresh!


  1. One of the things that drew me to your restaurant was a picture of food served on a chopping board, but ours was served on plates what did we miss?

I do believe that you may have come during the Burger Fest, and unfortunately at that time we made an executive decision to not serve on the boards as we honestly did not have enough boards to keep up with the demand. We are still growing and we do our best to save and grow the business in tandem; when we started we literally had 5 boards, 20 plates, 30 water jugs and about 5 full time staff!


  1. Was there a thought concept behind the current setting of the place?

The concept was simple, we wanted to have a place where firstly, people could come and enjoy the beautiful garden and just escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Secondly a place where we would work with recyclables whenever possible, for example, all our tables are made from old shipping pallets that were to be discarded. Thirdly we wanted a place that offered a different type of cuisine from the usual around Nairobi and I believe if anyone saw our menu they would agree with us!


  1. What is your signature dish and why?

Our signature dish is our Laksa; laksa is essentially a spicy noodle soup which comes from South East Asia, and it also comes in many different forms some have a creamy base, some a clear broth base and so on and so forth. We make ours with a rich creamy spicy coconut base as we have seen it is truly what our customers love, so it’s definitely our signature dish; the Arbor Laksa!


  1. How is the journey so far?

The journey has been fantastic; The Arbor has its’ own personality and we are merely riding on its beautiful path and learning so much along the way. The restaurant part of The Arbor is such a joy as we love our food. We love experimenting and introducing new flavors & cuisines to our customers, however, The Arbor is more than just a restaurant we have five main brands that encompass The Arbor; Ilkarashi which does clothing & jewelry (we have the clothing made in-house and we also work with other local designers), D’vine which does body care products (we manufacture & retail on the property and we also supply to spas & hotels across Kenya), Eden Landscaping which manages the gardening & landscaping, Yellow Ochre that handles the furniture shop and The Studio which does manicure, pedicures and reflexology – so we literally wear multi-hats to work every day & no day is ever the same. So truly a fantastic journey!


  1. What is the one thing that makes you different from the many establishments popping up

I do believe what makes us different is of course our concept, The Arbor is not just a restaurant offering an eclectic menu, but a place where you can literally spend an entire day whether you want to shop for gifts, re-stock your body care products, re-design your house, pamper yourself with manicures & massages or simply just to grab a meal, you can get it all here and so much more, and I don’t believe there is anything exactly like us out there at the moment.


  1. What is the price range of your menus?

Our price range I would say is mid-range, when we started we always said we wanted to offer fantastic meals at reasonable prices and I do believe that we have done so. You could have a delicious meal for two for under KSH2,000 inclusive of drinks and leave feeling full & satisfied.


  1. What are your contacts

Our social media platforms are:

Facebook: facebook.com/thearborltd/

Instagram: @thearborltd

Reservation No: 0729400291

Opening Hours: Tues – Sat 9am – 10pm; Sundays 9am – 5pm (Closed on Mondays)


  1. Any other thing you would like to add?

I would like to personally thank bloggers like yourself, as truly you guys get what we are about and you truly capture the whole natural beauty of The Arbor. We have a fantastic team at The Arbor where we truly feel like family; and I do believe we always make it a point to make sure all our customers feel like they belong when they come to The Arbor.


NB: The Arbor is located next to Ebru TV, James Gichuru Rd, Lavington.


Special thanks to Shamini, The Arbor MD for sharing The Arbor journey with us and the charming Wanjiru for being ever so polite and helpful!