How Titanic's 1st class passengers lived

Abu Dhabi restaurant Bord Eau sets to recreate the final dinner menu from the infamous ship.

Meryl D'Souza April 11, 2016

It's curious how The Titanic has continued to hold the attention of modern day society, over a century after its fateful journey.

The ship was a microcosm of Edwardian society with the wealthy and poor separated by tiers, and ever since its fateful sinking, the world has been fascinated with what went on below and above deck. 

Now, in Abu Dhabi - a place familiar with superyachts - 104 years after the tragedy that claimed the lives of more than 1,500 people, one restaurant plans to recreate the final 10-course meal enjoyed by the first-class passengers aboard the Titanic on that ill-fated evening.

Bord Eau, located in the Shangri-La Hotel, Qaryat Al Beri, will commemorate the anniversary of the tragedy on April 14, the date that the Titanic struck the iceberg. Aside from the dinner, Bord Eau's normally opulent dining room will be transformed to resemble Titanic's first-class cabin, with an elegant and era-fitting dress code encouraged.

The dinner on that fateful night cost some of the wealthiest people in the world a whooping AED 455,000 in today’s currency. It included oysters, cream of barley soup, filet mignon, roast duck in apple sauce, lamb in mint sauce, roast squab and cress, paté de foie gras, Waldorf pudding and chocolate éclairs. Bord Eau, however, will be charging its diners a modest AED 406 for the gastronomic journey.

Of course the politicians, businessmen, bankers, professional athletes, industrialists and high-ranking military personnel aboard the Titanic were accustomed to an opulent life that stretched beyond fine dining. As such, life aboard the exclusive top-tier deck of the ship was filled with luxuries. 

Here are just some of the amenities that were available to first-class passengers aboard the Titanic. Remember, this was in 1912.

  • A fully functioning gym and a squash court
  • At seven-feet deep and 30-feet long, the largest heated pool on any ship at that time.
  • Turkish baths, electric baths, and steam room
  • A private massage room
  • A barber
  • A reading and writing room
  • A first class smoke room
  • A reception room that led to the dining room. This was mainly so that people could discuss the day’s events.
  • 114-foot long dining room capable of seating 532 passengers.
  • 39 private suites: 30 on the Bridge Deck and 9 on the Shelter Deck. The suites included bedrooms with private toilet facilities. All had up to five different rooms: 2 bedrooms, 2 wardrobe rooms and a bathroom.