Hospitality Today Oct-Nov 2016 - Page 4

‘Rocketing’ rents and rates threaten historic London restaurants . . 4 | Hospitality Today | Oct/Nov 2016 Tax burden ‘wildly disproportionate’ says industry leader Prime Central London is on the verge of losing some of its best-loved historic restaurants, with nine in ten restaurateurs gearin#g up to adapt or die if rents and rates continue as forecast, according to a new report by restaurant property agents Cedar Dean Group. Nearly nine in ten (87% of) restaurateurs said they would no longer be able to continue their business in their current form if rates and rents continue to rise as forecast, according to the poll of 100 Prime Central London restaurateurs. Of those 87%, four-in-ten (40%) anticipate shutting up shop entirely, while 57% say they will be forced to relocate to a cheaper area. Only 3% said they thought they could adapt their business model. The research, contained in a report released this month, comes as London’s restaurateurs face up to the most challenging business environment in recent history. Prime Central London has seen colossal rent rises over the last few years, far outpacing those seen in the rest of the capital. Rents in the W1 and WC2 postcodes have more than doubled in the past year. Rents in Mayfair have risen by around 400% over the same period, from £150 Zone A per square foot to £600 per square foot today. By comparison, on average London restaurants coming up to their five-year rent review face an increase in rent of 50%.