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Maxwell’s Restaurants in liquidation

Maxwell’s Restaurants, owner of sites including Maxwell’s Bar & Grill London nightclub Café de Paris, has gone into liquidation.

Image: Wiki Commons

As reported by the Sunday Times, the company has appointed Live Recoveries as its liquidators, which said hope that the venues would generate much-needed income in December has been dashed.

“It was apparent low customer numbers, uncertainty surrounding trading, and mounting creditors and rent arrears left the company with no alternative,” the company told the Sunday Times.

Maxwell’s Restaurants was founded in 1972 by Guards Polo Club Chairman Brian Stein. Café de Paris, which was bought by Stein in 2002, has a much longer history, having opened in 1924.

The Piccadilly nightclub remained open during World War II, closing when two bombs fell down a ventilation shaft into the venue in 1941, killing at least 34 people. Café de Paris reopened in 1948, playing host to stars including Judy Garland, Frank Sinatra and Grace Kelly.

Howard Raymond, the son of the so-called King of Soho Paul Raymond, who owns the freehold on the site, told the Sunday Times that he received a letter on Friday announcing the liquidation.

Posting a statement on Twitter, the club said: “With a heavy heart, we can confirm that we will be shutting the doors of our beloved Café de Paris for good. We wanted you all to know that we have not gone out without a fight. We tried everything but the devastating effect of Covid-19 in the end was too much.

“We did our best to support our staff, their livelihoods and respect everyone’s health and safety but in the end, like so many other hospitality businesses, we have reached the end of the road. We thank all of our amazing customers for their continued love and support.”

The news comes after a group of cross-party MPs and Peers came together to establish an All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for the night time economy this month. 

With many businesses forced to close since March, the Night Time Industries Association said the move was prompted by fears that the sector and its supply chains are facing “collapse due to disproportionate Covid restrictions combined with insufficient sector specific financial support from government.”

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