Hospitality surge as Southampton welcomes 22 new bars and restaurants

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28 February 2023

Confidence is returning to Southampton’s hospitality sector as 22 new bars and restaurants moved into the city centre during the last 12 months.

Data collected by GO! Southampton, the city’s Business Improvement District (BID), has revealed that just five food and drink venues have closed their doors in the last year, with more than four times as many opening in their place.*

This is positive news for the industry, which now appears to be bouncing back after being under severe pressures during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Foodies visiting the city, which recently achieved Purple Flag status for its safe and vibrant evening and night-time economy, can enjoy a diverse range of eateries from both independent and national brands restaurants, bars and cafes.

An exciting new venture Tap and Tandoor, an “Indian gastropub” is set to open in Westquay this spring.

Owner Ajay Kenth said: “We chose Southampton as the new location for Tap and Tandoor for its brilliantly diverse food scene, which is rich in variety and culture.

“We are particularly looking forward to welcoming a new community to our concept, which brings together a modern gastro pub with craft beers and cocktails alongside an Indian dining experience. We pride ourselves on using local produce and suppliers to bring the very best food and drink to our customers – we look forward to seeing what Southampton has to offer.”

Other businesses that have opened – include Chinese restaurant M’Dim Sum, located on Above Bar Street, and national Bubble Tea chain Bubbleology, which has opened in Westquay.

Blue’s Smokehouse in Guildhall Square and Edison’s on the High Street opened last year, along with hugely popular Sharkey’s Sports Bar which chose the city as its flagship venue and “biggest project to date”.

“From Bubble Tea to karaoke bars, Southampton has it all,” said Stephen Manion, Executive Director at GO! Southampton.

“Despite a difficult few years for the hospitality sector, we can safely say that Southampton is emerging as a key destination for businesses aiming to open to maximum success.

He continued: “As the high street continues to grow and evolve, we’re seeing customers wanting more from the city centre than just a shopping experience. It is important for Southampton’s businesses to provide an all-round customer experience if they wish to succeed, giving customers a reason to travel to the city-centre and stay in order to enjoy a mix of offerings.”

Stephen added: “We are hugely excited to see what the rest of 2023 brings and we wish all of our new businesses all the success for the future.”

New food and drink businesses that have arrived in Southampton include:

Coming Soon:

  • Chilli Flames – Bedford Place
  • Tap and Tandoor – Westquay
  • Bisque Coffee – High Street

*Statistics correct at time of publication. Data from businesses within the GO! Southampton BID area. 

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