Nestled along the light rail line through Surfers Paradise Boulevard, it’s easy to pass Velaa none the wiser. Step through the sliding door and you will be immediately captivated with pretty pops of lemon, beautiful brass sconces, terrazzo tiles and a neon light that reads ‘Life is short, eat the dessert first,’ which serves as both a reminder and an invitation. Starters like salmon tartare and prawn toast set the stage for a memorable dining experience, leading to flavour-packed mains such as the aromatic Khao Soi beef topped with crisp noodles. One of the all-time favourites, we’re told, is the innovative Tom Yum prawns omurice, which marries traditional Thai cuisine with a subtle Western flair. If you heed the neon sign’s invitation, the burnt-butter toast is a delight – a decadently thick slab of toast, slightly caramelised and adorned with grilled banana, a scoop of ice cream and lashings of caramel. Complementing the culinary delights is a selection of interesting and tasty beverages, such as the signature Velaa Thai Milk Tea, which is brewed daily using three different kinds of tea imported from Thailand.


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