Covent Garden restaurant secured off-market for Michelin starred and TV celebrity chef Angela Hartnett.
Angela Hartnett, MBE, is one of the most high-profile women in the restaurant world, a protégé of Gordon Ramsay, she now owns the Michelin starred Murano, Café Murano and Merchants Tavern.
To source and secure a 2,500+Sq Ft restaurant within prime central London; Fitzrovia, Marylebone, Covent Garden and Mayfair.
Chris Yates, MD of the Angela Hartnett group approached us off the back of the numerous Jason Atherton deals. Angela had already the Michelin-starred Murano in Mayfair, Café Murano in St. James and Merchants Tavern in Shoreditch, the plan was to open numerous Café Muranos in certain parts of London, as this was a more scalable business.
We began the process by identifying opportunities which were readily available in the desired locations, none of which were quite right and were either not located on the right street or configured awkwardly. We then received a tip-off from a known administrator that a certain restaurant would be going into receivership in Mayfair. We received the details and inspected it immediately. However, given that the property was handled by administrators, there was a thorough protocol we had to follow. This meant that the property had received full exposure with a view to achieving the best possible price. We entered the bidding process, however were unsuccessful and lost out to an extremely high offer. We continued the search with more impetus as Angela was keen for the next site, and after sending out numerous requirements to our landlord and agent databases we received an off market opportunity in the heart of Covent Garden, Theatre Land.
The property had been trading for over 20 years as a well-known and successful Turkish restaurant. It was a large space, covering 3,500 Sq Ft and had a featured first floor conservatory. After the initial inspection with Chris, Angela came down for the second – after which we made an offer. The existing lease was coming to an end and the vendor was in the process of renewing it with the landlord who happened to be Shaftesbury. This meant that the rent was set to increase in line with the new lease, therefore our offer was conditional on it not exceeding at certain amount. This condition was soon met because Shaftesbury wanted Angela to occupy the unit. However, the site still required thorough due diligence as it appeared not much had changed over the last 20 years and had become somewhat dilapidated. The liability of this was upon the tenant and ultimately this was used to claim a reduction on the purchase price.
After prolonged negotiations we finalised a conditional deal, which went through after satisfying all the points we had raised. Given our industry relations we were able to secure an off-market opportunity and strike a deal for a new lease with the landlord. Café Murano now trade successfully from their 100 cover Covent Garden site.
Café Murano, 34-36 Tavistock Street, London, WC2
"We are very happy with this acquisition."- Angela Hartnett