Dinner in the 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt

Welcome to the 536th Tablescape Thursday!

Last October, I spent 15 days traveling across Egypt with my friend, Teresa. That trip was definitely one of the most exciting and mysterious, bucket-list trips I’ve ever been on. In a word, it was awesome–Disney Rash and all! lol

During the trip to Egypt, we had a rather interesting adventure during a visit to the Sofitel Legend Old Cataract Hotel in Aswan. The Old Cataract is well-known for many things, including all the famous folks who have stayed there over the years.


It was the Old Cataract Hotel where Agatha Christie set many of the scenes from her novel, Death on the Nile. She stayed there for several months during the period she was writing Death on the Nile.

Sofitel Legend Old Cataract Hotel Entrance


Take a tour of Agatha Christie’s suite at the Old Cataract in this previous post. In the Footsteps of Agatha Christie: A Visit to the Old Cataract Hotel.

Old Cataract Hotel Entrance


The Moorish architecture inside the hotel is stunning! Walking through this hotel is a visual delight with so many beautiful antiques and lovely architecture to enjoy. It could take a full day just to see all the fascinating photographs on the walls from years past.

Iconic Legend Old Cataract Hotel, Moorish Architecture & Decor


It took a miracle–actually, it took the clever wits and determination of Teresa, but we managed to have dinner in their famous 1902 restaurant. (Read more about the wits and determination part in this previous post: In the Footsteps of Agatha Christie: A Visit to the Old Cataract Hotel.)

The lighting was turned down very, very low inside the restaurant, which is actually the way I like it while dining, but it made taking photos a bit of a challenge.

Dinner in the 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


A view of our table when we first sat down.

Dinner in 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt 01


Lots of elegant flatware…

Dinner at the 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


I love the monogrammed china…

Beautiful China in 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


So pretty with the Cataract Hotel monogram.


The napkin rings remind you of the name of the restaurant…1902. The Old Cataract Hotel was originally built in 1899 by Thomas Cook, so I’m not sure where the restaurant gets its 1902 name. Maybe that’s the year the restaurant actually opened.

1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt, Napkin Ring


The hotel has three restaurants but we only had a chance to dine in the 1902 restaurant.

Napkin Ring, 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


Wine was served with bottled water. Best to drink bottled water while traveling in Egypt to avoid tummy upset.

Dinner & Wine, 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


This was how our dinners were served! I snapped a quick photo before the top was removed.

Food Presentation under Dome, 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


I wish I could remember what I had to eat that night, I should have taken a photo of the menu! I can’t remember if this was the appetizer or the entrée, I think it was the entrée.

Lovely Dinner, 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


Dessert…again, not sure what I had, just remember it was delicious.

Dessert, 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


Dining in the Old Cataract was truly a wonderful experience and I very much recommend it if you ever find yourself in Aswan during a trip to Egypt. It’s not often we get the opportunity to dine in the same restaurant Agatha Christie dined in while writing, Death on the Nile!

Pssst: Take a tour of Agatha Christies’ suite at the Old Cataract in this previous post. In the Footsteps of Agatha Christie: A Visit to the Old Cataract Hotel.

Dinner in the 1902 Restaurant, Old Cataract Hotel, Aswan Egypt


Pssst: This July I’m heading off to England on a Literary tour…read more about the tour in this post: Literary Tour of Southern England. I’m not positive but I think there are still a few slots left open if you’re a Jane Austen/English Lit fan.

Looking forward to the beautiful tables linked for this week’s Tablescape Thursday!

Pssst: I post almost daily to Instagram. Follow Between Naps on the Porch on Instagram here: Between Naps On The Porch.

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  1. Ooooh! What a bucket list experience, Susan! You did a splendid job with the photos in that low light. The Moorish arches are stunning, and as to the table, such old world elegance! I adore the silver cover and the 1902 napkin rings, especially.

    • Thanks, Helen! Photo taking was def a challenge. I had to lighten up that first photo of the room shot, the original was so dark. I love dining in low lighting, though…really creates such a special ambiance.

  2. Good morning. I am not much of a linker or blog promoter, but I do enjoy having opportunity to share tables here most every week. Thank you for that.

  3. Good morning, Susan. I’m not much of a blog linker or promoter, but I do enjoy having opportunity to share tables here as they are such a part of my life. Thanks!

  4. Loved the napkin rings. I wonder if the gift shop sells them?

  5. Wow how exciting! I love the overall ambience of interior. How cool is that about Agatha Christie staying there while writing the novel!

  6. Miss seeing your own tablescapes!

    • Awww, thanks Bev! I’ll have one for you next week. I just got back into town late Sunday night from seeing family for two weeks at Christmas, so I’ve spent Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday taking down wreaths off the front of the house, taking down garland, going through two weeks of mail, replying to emails and messages, taking my car in for servicing (had lights on the dash come on while I was gone) getting ready for a class I’m attending today and getting over a nasty cold I caught from one of my grandchildren. I think I was a bit run down from staying up late visiting with my son and dil and the early morning 5:30-6:00 wake up calls when my grandsons came down to wake me each morning. I went to bed this past Tuesday night at 11:00 PM, awoke at 8:00 AM, went right back to sleep and slept until 2:00 PM. Couldn’t believe I could sleep that much! After that, my cold pretty much went away, so I think my body needed that intense sleep to get rid of the cold.

  7. Hi Susan,

    You didn’t mention the waterfall. Did you have an opportunity to see it?

    • I saw the river, but I don’t think I recall a waterfall. I’ll have to ask Teresa if she saw one. Is there a really beautiful waterfall on the grounds? You can see the views of the river in the other post I linked to…the views were really pretty!

  8. linda Nixon says

    I’m surprised you were allowed to take pictures as they were so private and determined to not let you in as you previously mentioned in an earlier post.

  9. I am planning a trip to Egypt. Would you recommend the tour company you used?

    • Yes and No. The places we stayed were nice, but one of our guides wasn’t very good. Also, the cars they had us riding in were pretty ratty much of the time and often we couldn’t even access the seat belts. I don’t like riding in a car, especially in Egypt, without seat belt. Also, the driver who drove us to Luxor (I think it was Luxor) drove like a maniac…high speeds. Teresa actually ended up having to yell at him a couple of times because of how he was careening about corners at high speeds. So I’m not sure I’d feel comfortable recommending them.
      Overseas Adventure Travel is going there now. They were going there when we booked our trip but unfortunately, all their trips were filled up, so that’s why we didn’t use them. I would totally trust them. I’ve traveled with them twice and the drivers/vehicles have always been great, as are the guides. On the trip to Morocco with them, our bus even had wifi built in which was wonderful! Here’s a link to their Egypt trips: https://www.oattravel.com/destinations/country/egypt
      Faye, if you end up going on a trip with OAT, please let them know I referred you. They will give you $100 off the trip and will do the same for me the next time I travel with them.

      • Hi Susan- Thank you for your opinion. Yes, I’ve been looking st the OAT trip. It looks great and I’ll probably do it in 2020 or 2021. I will definitely tell them you referred me.

  10. Hi Susan: That hotel certainly is gorgeous! I would also forget what I ate if there was such beautiful sights all around me.!

    • It was beautiful! I can never remember what I ate yesterday…for some reason, that type thing never sticks with me. I have friends that I go to lunch with who can remember what they ate in a restaurant they haven’t been to in a year…I don’t know how they do that!

  11. Oh what an amazing experience you had dear Susan on your trip to exotic Egypt! Great place and fabulous images you shared with us.
    Thank you for sharing and for the wonderful party you have for us.
    Have a terrific year !

  12. Cyndi Raines says

    What an adventure! Such elegant dining, very lovely. It is always so wonderful to look back at past adventures! The sites, sounds, smells come rushing back to us in our mind’s eye and we are there again. Thanks for sharing! Your summer trip is going to be awesome!

  13. kim lentzkl says

    Hello. Some time ago, you had told us about a curling brush that you had purchased for yourself and your daughter in law. I had purchased it and loved it. I have now lost it (left in friends hotel room I believe). anyway, I was wondering if you could provide me with where you had purchased it again.

  14. Wow. Very interesting to see these photos. I have seen it only when making a boat trip in Aswan. Thank you.

    Happy and safe travels!

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