Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Will Planned Restaurant Knock People Side-Ways?

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Will Planned Restaurant Knock People Side-Ways?

Article excerpt

Byline: COREENA FORD Business writer coreena.ford@ncjmedia.co.uk @Scoopford

PLANS to transform the former Solano's Peruvian cuisine eaterie into a new bar and restaurant are gathering pace.

Newcastle's first Peruvian restaurant, named after former Newcastle United ace Nolberto Solano, closed its doors last year and has lain empty ever since.

The owner of neighbouring bar The Empress, Matthew Settle, announced plans to create a new leisure concept called A Bit On The Side, which gained its alcohol licence last year, paving the way for it to open until midnight Sunday to Thursday and until 2am at weekends, serving a full menu every day until at least 10pm.

The restaurant's website pledges to open this spring or summer, and before the venue will open the owners have outlined changes to be made to the 19th century building - which lies within Newcastle's conservation area.

Now designers have unveiled how the finished all-day cafe bar and restaurant will look, after submitting drawings to Newcastle City Council planners.

Mr Settle, managing director of The Liquor Co, which is making the application, has spent several years working on his idea for A Bit On The Side, having looked at other venues in the city to come up his plan.

The venue, which takes its name from the street on which it is situated, will have its interior radically changed, with leather seating, plush velvet drapes and curtains, smoked mirrors, reclaimed timber wall panelling, white washed brickwork, parquet wood flooring and soft traditional rugs.

Interior designers at Collaborative Design have submitted proposals to make several alterations, including installing new Victorianstyle retractable awnings and artificial box planters, reinstating boarded-up windows facing out on to Amen Corner, putting in a new entrance and giving it a lick of paint. The design and access statement says: "The proposals have not been discussed with Newcastle City Council's planning department, but we feel that the proposed alterations are not detrimental to the existing building and the conservation area. …

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