Funny thing about language, where one word can have a certain meaning in a certain culture, it can have a very different connotation in another! This is the true story of a Yemeni Restaurant achieving a complete shop concept design makeover and brand transformation, and reinventing itself under the new name ‘Mandi’s’.
Mandi is 3000 years old traditional delicacy popular in the eastern Yemeni city of Hadhramaut.
Interestingly, the man who is helping to re-brand the concept in Dubai was born in the North East of Italy, in a region called Friuli Venezia Giulia, where ‘Mandi’ is a popular form of greeting, meaning “Ciao!” (“Hi!” in English)
The Conception of Mandi’s
Located in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, UAE, Reedan Restaurant was an old favourite amongst true patrons of the delicious Yemeni cuisine. However, as times changed and competition became stiff, Reedan felt an inherent need to reinvent and re-brand itself to appeal to new clientele and to develop the franchise system for the related expansion. Although every delicacy that came out of the Reedan kitchen was a gastronomical delight, the stellar item on the restaurant’s menu was Mandi.
And there it was – Mandi’s – Reedan’s new name and identity!
The term ‘Mandi’ originates from the Arabic word ‘nada’, which means ‘dew’. In the parlance of Yemeni cuisine, Mandi rightfully derives its name from the unique ‘dewy’ and succulent texture that the meat obtains after being cooked on dry wood, inside a tandoor (clay oven), and infused with indigenous spices.
Another clever idea behind renaming the restaurant only as Mandi’s – the name instantly advertised the most popular Yemeni dish served at the restaurant!
When our CEO, Norman Cescut, was approached by Mr. Omar, Reedan Restaurant’s owner, to work on its shop concept design and re-brand it around the idea of Mandi, the Yemeni dish, he could not believe the two happy coincidences!
He was an Italian, who was as used to saying “Mandi!” almost as often as he was to saying “Si!” (meaning “Yes” in Italian) re-branding a traditional Yemeni restaurant in Dubai around Mandi. In fact, this was more than a coincidence and not the only one as Norman’s brother name is Omar! It seemed as if ‘the universe conspired’ to set things in motion and bring two parties together to work on a concept that had a great individual significance in their respective cultures!
Reedan partnered with DESITA to infuse a stroke of originality and innovation in a traditional restaurant concept. With DESITA’s help, the all-new Mandi’s restaurant brand will imbibe modern; best-in-class shop concept design and décor elements as well as technology to emerge stronger, bolder and more profitable than ever before!
DESITA Transforms Reedan into Mandi’s
In redesigning the concept for Mandi’s, DESITA is keeping the culinary significance of Mandi in Yemeni cuisine and the importance of Arab collective dining at the very core and blended these elements with the intrinsic needs of modern diners. Under its new name, Mandi’s will be the culmination point for authentic Yemeni flavours, generous Arab hospitality and unparalleled service in a recreated ambience, topped with an all new brand experience!
Customer is the Ambassador
With its concept design makeover, Mandi’s will be set to offer a delightful, wholesome and high value-for-money experience to its customers. At Mandi’s, connoisseurs, both old and new, looking for bona fide Yemeni food can indulge in a delightful treat in a great, relaxed atmosphere and enjoy a fine service by the knowledgeable and friendly staff. Hopefully, this brand transformation would also help it to climb up the popularity charts and become the best place to enjoy authentic Mandi in Ras Al Khaimah, Dubai, the other Emirates and all over the GCC countries.
The philosophy behind developing loyal customers and attracting new customers is simple. Mandi’s would let every single customer be its ambassador and judge its merits. This would help the restaurant to live up to its customers’ expectations, constantly improve its services and leverage from ‘word-of-mouth’ advertising!
Prepped with all the ingredients for success, Mandi’s is geared up to become a plush UAE based Yemeni restaurant concept where customers can relish authentic Mandi, and upon leaving, say “Mandi!” only to return again!
If you too wish to lend your traditional restaurant concept an all-new brand identity, talk to us. Together, we might discover another happy coincidence!