Brexit driving London restaurant closures

Brothers Chris and Jeff Galvin’s much loved Galvin Bistrot de Luxe in Marylebone is to close next month after losing a fifth of its staff in the wake of the Brexit vote.

Chris and Jeff Galvin are to close Galvin Bistrot de Luxe in Marylebone, their first restaurant

As reported by the Evening Standard, the Baker Street bistro, which has been serving French classics since September 2005, will close its doors for good on 10 February. Chris and Jeff Galvin announced the news in a joint statement yesterday.

“We never wanted to water down the concept or the quality of food we have been proud to serve to a loyal clientele for 12 years. But in the world’s great cities things do not stand still. It was ahead of its time, and now it’s time to move on.

Galvin Bistrot de Luxe will close on 10 February

“Tastes change and, as creative chefs, we are restless and want to do new things not just endlessly repeat the same style of cooking,” they said.

“This has not been an easy decision but has been taken predominantly due to events outside our control that mean we are no longer able to remain competitive on quality and price yet remain a viable business at the same time,” they added.

The pair have faced “the perfect storm” in the wake of the Brexit vote, with rising rents, the decrease in the value of the pound and European staff leaving London making life increasingly difficult.

The brothers still run 11 sites, including Galvin at Windows at The Hilton hotel on Park Lane, Galvin La Chapelle in Spitalfields and Galvin Dubai.

According to the Evening Standard, all of the staff at Bistro de Luxe have been offered roles within the company.

Despite being just three weeks into the year, London has already seen some high profile restaurant closures, including Thai barbecue specialist Smoking Goat in Soho and the wine-focused 8 Hoxton Square in east London.

As reported by Eater London, this week modern Spanish restaurant Encant in Covent Garden, run by Victor Garvey, closed so that Garvey could give greater focus to his two other Spanish sites, Sibarita and Rambla.

Modern British restaurant Beagle in Hoxton has also closed. The café, bar and restaurant, run by DJ duo Danny and Kieran Clancy, opened in 2013.

2 Responses to “Brexit driving London restaurant closures”

  1. peter ferguson says:

    It is just SO easy to blame all failure on Brexit rather than own up to inadequacies in individual business plans or inability to deliver what the customer wants.
    This ready excuse is so nauseating. There are hundreds of restaurants which are full every night of the week in London at every price point so please don’t resort to the easy blame game.
    At least Brexit should ensure that restaurants begin to pay their servers proper wages rather than relying on cheap immigrant labour which is open to exploitation.

  2. Subba Rao says:

    Not an excuse for Encant. I dined there twice and wasn’t quite sure why I was there the second time. Poorly run, staff without the right skill to be front of house… And whilst Brexit is to blame for closures, you can’t blame Brexit on a shitshow.

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