January 28th, 2016

Gusto And The Alchemist Confirm Birmingham Launches

By Tamlyn Jones, Birmingham Post

Gusto And The Alchemist Confirm Birmingham Launches




Gusto's restaurant in Manchester will have a sister site in Birmingham later this year




Bar and restaurant group Living Ventures has confirmed it will be opening two of its brands later this year in the revamped Grand in Colmore Row.

First mooted last year, lettings have now been signed between The Grand's owner, Hortons' Estate, and Living Ventures to take three of the available retail units in the city centre building.

The company is taking approximately 10,000 sq ft over the ground and lower ground floors for a new Gusto and The Alchemist and is due to take control of the units in the spring ahead of a summer opening.

Gusto, which is inspired by the traditional grand cafés of Europe, will occupy 5,191 sq ft on the corner of Colmore Row and Church Street while The Alchemist, which specialises in cocktails, has the neighbouring 4,912 sq ft unit fronting Colmore Row.

Living Ventures is predominantly based in the north of England but opened its first venue in Birmingham - The Botanist in Temple Street - last year.

The new leases are for 25 years at a rent of £215,000 per annum with both venues due to be open in the summer, joining a burgeoning restaurant scene in the Colmore Business District.

Hortons' Estate is currently carrying out a long-running regeneration of the historic Grade II* former home of the Grand Hotel which will eventually house offices, retail units and a new hotel.

Jeremy Roberts, chief executive of Living Ventures, said: "We have had our sights on Birmingham for some time, finding the right locations is always key.

"Colmore Row is the city's most prestigious street and The Grand undoubtedly its most iconic building. The Botanist has been popular from day one. We look forward to bringing two different but equally exciting brands to the city."

The Grand Hotel closed its doors in 2002, but both the office and retail accommodation along Colmore Row continued to be occupied until early this year when Hortons' began the reconfiguration and refurbishment of this space to bring it up to modern occupier standards.

The family-owned property company has invested £14 million in the restoration project to date, which includes the restoration of the façades, installation of a new roof and remodelling of the shops and offices.

Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership and Birmingham City Council have recently awarded Hortons' a £6 million grant towards the cost of the interiors works at the hotel.

Tony Green, chief executive at Hortons' Estate, said: "Whilst a lot more work remains to be done to return The Grand to its former glory, getting the first new occupiers signed up is a significant milestone and will restore life to the building."


Bookmark and Share

GUSTO ~ Restaurant and Bar: Italian for taste and enjoyment
Inspired by the elegant charm of a classic Italian ristorante with a contemporary buzz and a modern, stylish interior, GUSTO brings the true "taste and enjoyment" of Italy to our guests.

GUSTO - it's all a matter of taste!