Loungers says it will open new Lounges in Beeston, Bury and Sudbury before Christmas, along with a Cosy Club in Leeds. Lounges in Melton Mowbray and Stockport and a Cosy Club in Lincoln will follow early in 2018. It follows recent Lounge openings in Lewes, Bedford and Wokingham. Loungers confirmed the plans as it reported financial results this week, including a 7.4% increase in like for like sales in the 24 weeks to 8 October. It is on track to open 24 sites in its current financial year.

The Bermondsey Pub Company, part of the Ei Group’s managed pubs business, has opened a first ever escape room feature at the Hope pub in Farringdon. The venture, in partnership with Handmade Mysteries, challenges people to escape a themed room in under an hour by solving a series of clues. More joint ventures may follow if it proves successful.

Glendola Leisure has launched Alston Bar & Beef, a new restaurant at the Manchester Corn Exchange that specialises in steak and gin-based drinks. The 160-cover restaurant is the second Alston venue for Glendola, joining the original in Glasgow.

British Land has confirmed that Gourmet Burger Kitchen and local sushi brand Let’s Sushi are both opening at Sheffield’s Meadowhall centre before the end of the year. They will form part of the Oasis dining quarter, with GBK launching a 2,500 square feet venue with 100 covers in the next few weeks and Let’s Sushi taking a 500 square feet unit, a second site in the city. The openings are part of a £60m refurbishment of Meadowhall from British Land. Its F&B asset manager Alice Keown said: “GBK and Let’s Sushi signing is particularly exciting as it will add even more variety and choice to the Oasis Dining Quarter from the food hall on the lower level, to the 16 family focussed restaurants on the upper level.”

TGI Friday’s has confirmed an opening of a 7,500 square feet restaurant at the Lexicon centre in Bracknell. Hotel Chocolat is among several other brands to agree new leases there. Other brands already operating at the Lexicon include Prezzo, Bill’s, Carluccio’s and GBK.

Cote has opened on Grainger Street in Newcastle. It is a 94-cover restaurant over two floors.

US-based Tex Mex operator Taco Bell has submitted plans to open a drive-thru restaurant in the Phoenix retail park in Paisley as it continues a push into the UK market. It has also announced plans to open under franchise in Sheffield, Barnsley and Brighton before the end of the year, bringing its total UK estate to 22.

Five Guys will open at the Intu shopping centre in Derby at the end of November. It is a 2,600 square feet unit.

Bill’s has set 27 November for the opening of its next new restaurant at Drake Circus in Plymouth. It has expanded a unit previously occupied by Ed’s Easy Diner.
Wagamama will launch its latest new restaurant in Reigate on 13 November.

Marston’s will open a new-build pub restaurant and hotel in Slackbuie in Inverness in February, local media report. It will be called the Three Witches.

Buca di Pizza has just opened in the Fruit Market in Hull. The restaurant has 80 covers inside and another 20 outside

Miller & Carter opened its latest new restaurant in Worcester Park in south west London late last week.

Vegan pita, falafel and hummus brand Humpit has opened a third site at Leeds University after securing funding from a local investment group. The concept launched as a pop-up in Leeds two years ago, and now operates from the Corn Exchange in Leeds and the Orchard Square shopping centre in Sheffield as well as Leeds University. Humpit plans to reach nine locations within the next two years.

The Gaucho group has worked with Paris-based empanada specialist Clasico Argentino to open a first location in the UK—next to the Gaucho restaurant on Swallow Street in Piccadilly. There are also plans to launch the brand as a street food operation next to Gaucho’s Broadgate restaurant in the City.

Street food fried chicken sandwich operator Butchies is opening a permanent restaurant on Rivington Street in Shoreditch in late November. It will sell takeaways as well as eat-in. Butchies has previously operated at Broadway Market.

A new bar, restaurant and distillery complex called Juniper Place opened in Swansea this week. It features a rum-themed bar called Old Havana, a 96-cover restaurant and a gin and rum distillery.

Catalunyan restaurant Lunya has relocated to a new 5,500 square feet restaurant at Liverpool ONE, on the corner of College Lane and Hanover Street. It includes an expanded deli and bigger bar, both incorporated into an open plan dining area.

Manchester’s healthy eating concept Kettlebell Kitchen is opening a second site in the city, on First Street. The original is on Great Ancoats Street.

Pret will open in Cornhill in Ipswich next year, local media report.

Patisserie and café brand Maitre Choux has opened a second location on Dean Street in Soho. The original is in South Kensington.

     

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