A story of sense

Are you prepared to have a dinner in complete darkness?
…without knowing what you are eating?
…without knowing the people seated next to you?
What will be your feelings during this new experience?

Dans le Noir ? is a unique, powerful and distinctive experience with three main dimensions

A sensory journey

“Switch off the light, switch on your senses!”

Dining in absolute darkness is a sensory experience that awakes your senses and enables you to completely re-evaluate your perception of taste and smell.

A social conviviality

“This restaurant is totally devoid of vanity”

Darkness frees inhibitions and fosters conviviality without judgement and preconceptions. Communication is more intense, authentic and spontaneous.

 A human exchange

“Reversing everything, the unsighted host becomes your eyes!”

A human experience where those with visual impairments become your eyes and guides for a short time in an intriguing, sensual world.



Dans le Noir ? and Rydges Auckland are proud to present Dans le Noir ? at the Rydges Auckland restaurant.

In such a marvelous environment, you will be welcomed from March 24th 2017, to live this amazing experience.

Dining in the dark is an adventure which brings to your mind a lot of interesting questions in a fun and surprising environment.

Our team

Our team


the KITCHEN team

kitchen team






FAQ – The real



We consider Dans le Noir ? not only as a sensory experience but also as a human & social experience. We have made the decision for more than 10 years that we are running the concept worldwide to welcome our guests on large hosts table. It seems very interesting to us to make people discuss and meet with other people without any preconception.

If you are coming with a group or with your partner, you will be seated with the people you came with. Next to you, other people that you don’t know from before will be seated. Don’t be shy, enjoy this unique experience to talk with them.

Little story : many times we have people that did not know each other before that are going to go out for a drink together after the experience.


Yes it is! Not even a single flash or light is in the dark room. To keep the room completely dark, you will be asked to place all potential sources of light such as lighters, watches, mobile phones or cameras in complimentary lockers. You can also use the lockers to drop your coat and/or purse, bags, etc.


Our guides will help you to get by in the dark room to eat but will also help you reach your table. Once deprived from our main sense, sight, we tend to rely more on our other senses: sense of hearing, of touch and smell. So, even though at the beginning it can be daunting, it gradually becomes more and more enjoyable as you start to relax. Our blind guides are carefully trained to ensure visitors welfare and will provide you with guidance. As the restaurant declines all responsibility for your clothes, you are asked to dress appropriately in order to live this experience without stress.


We don’t make any discrimination; blind people are naturally more efficient in the darkness and are the best to do the job in such context. You will become blind for at least an hour and a half, and you will have to trust your server. It is a true “transfer of trust” and an amazing and positive approach to raise awareness about blindness and disability in general.


Visitors aren’t allowed to move alone in the dark room, go to the restrooms or leave by themselves as it could put other customers and the waiters at risk. (Remember guides need clear walkways to work around the tables). If you wish to do so on any occasion, make sure your waiter is informed and they will able to assist you.


The welcoming staff is responsible for taking orders in the pre-function area, but you can of course order drinks or food directly from your server whenever you wish. Please let us know about any food allergies and be sure to remind your guide when he/she brings your plate to the table.


Simply by calling his/her first name. The guide will be introduced to you with his/her first name before you enter the dark room.


Not particularly, however those that have come have enjoyed the experience because it’s a unique way to share with their friends and relatives what it feels like being visually impaired people.


So far, the chefs have not been blind. The Head Chef and his team work in a well lit kitchen in order to deliver a great cuisine. We employ the best people, as we are not a foundation but a client oriented private company. They prepare creative and exciting dishes that play with flavours, as well as use fresh and tasty ingredients for guests to have a unique culinary experience.


It would be fun, but no! The restrooms aren’t dark but fully lit! The toilets are located on the same floor as the restaurant.


It is very rare that someone is not comfortable with dining in the dark! It is such an extraordinary experience that the majority of people feel amazed by this very unusual and exciting moment, which is all about a rediscovery of the other senses. Out of more than several hundred thousand visitors in Paris, London, Barcelona, St Petersburg, Bangkok and Warsaw,.. only a few of our customers felt the need to leave the dark room before they finished dining.


Everything has been taken into account carefully! There is adequate security equipment in the premises. The lights switch on automatically in the event of an emergency. Special emergency exits have been designed and checked by the safety manager to be fully compliant.


Our restaurant serves innovative, eclectic dishes created by our Head Chef Luis Milla and his team. Each meal is an explosion of diverse flavours and is created to educate our guests about this new way to experience food.

More information about the cuisine and the surprise menu


The welcoming staff will ask you if you have any special dietary requirements or suffer from any food allergies. In such cases, the chef would amend your menu accordingly. You are kindly reminded to request your allergies or diet requirements to your guide when he/she brings your plate to the table in the Dark Dining Room.


On average, visitors will spend approximately two hours in the dark room.


We have made efforts to keep our prices affordable to make this experience accessible to all. The actual price takes into account the safety requirements, the fact that we employ more personnel when compared to other restaurants, and menu items made with fresh ingredients. The extra cost for this experience is approximately $22 per person when compared to a traditional restaurant with a similar menu.

Follow this link for further explanations : Transparency

Check our prices : Surprise menus


We employ, in Auckland, 4 to 8 visually impaired guides. Nearly 50 permanent people in our staff around the world are visually impaired or deaf. Additional specialists are also available on call for special events such as private hires, corporate events (product launches for instance), official receptions, media launches, press events, sensory workshops, etc. The visually impaired are not only involved in the company as guide-servers, the vice President of Ethik Investment Group is blind. We also have several blind and deaf consultants in Europe and a spa concept using blind massage specialists.


There are 60 seats in the main dark dining room


We had customers admitting to lick their chocolate sauce from their plates, as they felt freer!

Some people met via an Internet chat room and decided to have their first “blind date” in the darkroom before eventually discovering their faces around a drink in the lit lounge.

We also organize events in the dark such as reading and debates; and these events usually make amazing moments and memories!
In complete darkness everyone is equal whether they are politicians, students, actors, businesspeople, celebrities (Prince William and Kate Middleton in London, Prime Minister in France…) etc. They all look alike in the dark as labels are dropped and as appearance and etiquettes disappear into the darkness. Dining with us is truly an unforgettable experience


We welcome children 6 years of age and up, they are braver than the adults, however they must always be accompanied by an adult.


To dine in our Auckland restaurant, you can reserve online, by phone at 09 375 5920 or sending us an email at

The Dining in the Dark experience is a sensory and a human experience, but it is also a SOCIAL one. In order to offer you a great and complete experience, we require a minimum of 10 people for a sitting. Feel free to spread the word and come with your family, your friends or colleagues. Kindly note that if we don’t have this mimimum number of people, we might ask you to reschedule your booking (notice will be given at least 72 hours in advance). Thank you for your understanding.



All information about news and special events are available on our website


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