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7 of the best all day diners in Chennai

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It used to be cool to say “cafe” until a few years ago. Not anymore. We now say “dinner all day” to refer to the 24-hour restaurants that are the mainstay of large luxury hotels. It is no different in Chennai where these all day dining restaurants perform multiple roles. A buffet restaurant (usually for all main meals including breakfast), a multi-cuisine restaurant if you prefer to steer clear of the buffet and opt for an a la carte menu, an ideal setting for meetings or meals between meals and a late-night refuge.

This is exactly the kind of place you’d pop into after a night on the town or a late night movie to satiate those cravings for biryani or dessert, and of course, to get an invigorating fix of filtered coffee. It’s always a good time for filtered coffee in Chennai, so the café’s moniker isn’t that simple after all. Some of these restaurants do not operate during the night but still operate throughout the day. We have rounded up some of our favorite things to do in Chennai:

Here are 7 of the best all-day dinners in Chennai:

1. Spectra, Leela Palace Chennai:

Sunday brunch is a local legend of sorts. In a hotel where there are several specialty restaurants, the Spectra scores in terms of quality and spread. Their buffet tables are small specialty restaurants in themselves, and they also showcase an array of healthy fare. But it’s the breakfast spread including the wrong pancakes that wins our vote. Spectra Sweets hit the right notes and then there’s the views – it’s the only luxury hotel in town overlooking the Bay of Bengal.

Venue: MRC Nagar

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Pictured: Spectra, Leela Chennai Palace

2.601, The Park Chennai:

The all-day diners are a great reflection of the city’s food culture and trends. 601 is a good example. The all-day dining restaurant, The Park, continues to evolve and reinvent itself with an adventurous spirit that borders on daring. The latest tweak is the dimsum and sushi bar that cements the city’s ongoing romance with Asian cuisine. While the menu is constantly updated, there’s always room for 601 staples that keep regulars coming back—from pizza to safe pastas and the legendary tiramisu. It’s all there in the mix.

Where: 601 Anna Salai

3. The Dining Room, Park Hyatt:

One of our favorite spots for breakfast, this grand restaurant retains the hotel’s simple elegance and features floor-to-ceiling glass windows that allow indoor and outdoor seating areas with a stunning body of water to blend seamlessly. There are many spaces including areas tucked away from the crowds. While buffets are the mainstay for breakfast and dinner, the restaurant offers an impressive selection of international cuisine for lunch including comforting Asian options.

Where: Sardar Patel Road, Guindy

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Pictured: The Dining Room, Park Hyatt

4. Madras Pavilion, Grand Chola:

True to its name, ITC Grand Chola’s buffet restaurant serves first-class South Indian cuisine, including some of the most delicate dishes in town for breakfast. But this is not the only reason to visit the Madras Pavilion. The buffet spread is wide, service is on point and there are quite a few live counters and healthy options. We dig the breakfast specials and seafood combo during the Sunday brunch buffet special. If you arrive in between meals, you’ll find the Mercara Express Café next door for those convenient quick bites and an excellent selection of coffee.

Where: Mount Road, Guindy

5. Bazaar, Grand by GRT:

For a long time, the 24-hour restaurant at the GRT Grand was the perfect pit stop; The restaurant offered a unique “midnight combo” that really hit the spot. Many of these comfort dishes continue to bring diners back to Bazaar, an entirely new version of the all-day hotel dining experience. It is larger, merging seamlessly with the lobby and is a popular dining option for the family with a wide range of desserts and authentic South Indian signatures.

Where: Sir Thiagaraiah Road, T Nagar

6. Food Exchange, Novotel Chennai Chamières Road:

Score This intimate all-day restaurant with breakfast and dinner buffets. Regulars keep coming back for home-style specials including a coffee station run by home makers. The Food Exchange is known for its international selection and wine list. The restaurant isn’t shy about experimenting with its dinner buffet, with periodic food promotions that break away from the clichés.

Where: Shamirs Road, Nandanam

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Pictured: Food Exchange, Novotel Chennai Shamirs Road

7. Aniseed, Crown Coromandel:

To call Jelly Biryani at Anees one of the best luxury hotels in Chennai is not an exaggeration. It continues to be a huge draw among gourmets and late-night revelers seeking biryani. Anise takes its name from the spice which is also a staple in Chettinad cuisine. It offers a bit of oriental, italian and mediterranean signatures. We love the views of the hotel pool and the natural light that makes it a great lunch spot.

Where: Uthamar Gandhi Salai, Nungambakkam

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