Haskins Garden Centres Ltd has announced that the existing restaurant at their £7m million turnover garden centre at West End, Southampton, is to be extended as part of a £3 million investment to enhance the centre built in 1996. Up to 50 additional catering staff will be recruited to service the new restaurant which has been completely redesigned by Southampton based architects HPW. All other facilities including kitchens, storage areas, catering offices and customer toilets will be rebuilt within the 8,000 sq ft extension.
Julian Winfield, Chief Executive of Haskins Garden Centres Ltd, said that work will start to transform the current 250 cover restaurant in March (2011).
“The new layout will include the introduction of features including a sumptuous coffee lounge serving Costa coffee, a traditional stone hearth pizza oven, the introduction of a quality daily carvery and one of the most extensive cake counters in the region,” said Julian Winfield. “Free Wi-Fi for internet users will also be introduced.”
The new 460 cover restaurant will have sections of different seating, creating lounge areas by the glass walled extension that will open out to a large patio area for alfresco dining. An extendable function room, to be named the Swan room after the original garden centre built on the site, will be made available to organisations and private parties.
During the 7 month construction period, a temporary restaurant will be created within the centre where the current team of 50 catering staff will continue to be employed.
The group expects to mirror the success of a similar restaurant expansion completed at their Ferndown garden centre in 2008. The annual catering turnover leapt from £1.1m to £2m.
“We know that some of our West End customers have travelled to our Ferndown restaurant to see what standards they can expect to enjoy next October” said Julian Winfield. “We will be displaying photos and information at West End of our Ferndown facility to wet the appetites of our Hampshire customers.”
£650,000 from the £3 million investment will be used to give the internal and external departments of the Garden Centre a major refurbishment along with an upgrade to displays and its facilities.
(From left) West End Centre Manager Matt Hill, Chief Executive Julian Winfield and Group Catering Manager Carl Hadfield.
Various images of the Ferndown Haskins Restaurant on which the new West End Restaurant is based.