Bewley's Grafton Street Café To Close For Refurb, 140 Jobs To Go
Published on Jan 6 2015 2:04 PM in General Industry
Bewley's has confirmed that it will "temporarily" close its iconic Grafton Street Café until August, with the loss of 140 jobs.
The staff are to be made redundant as the café closes for refurbishment, with the company stating that the move was necessary to secure the future of the well-known café which is "currently significantly loss making".
It added that the changes were necessary "to secure its long term future on Grafton Street" where the café has a massive rent burden.
It's reported that the refurbishment and restoration will cost more than €1 million, while operating costs for the café at the moment include an annual rent of €1.5 million and it is loss making at a rate of some €1.2 million per annum.
The Café last underwent renovation in 2005.
It is planned to re-open the café with a simplified focus on the ground floor and basement.
"The café will be repositioned to enhance its appeal to consumer tastes with a focus on high quality handcrafted coffees, speciality teas, baked goods and patisserie. The plans include expanding the craft bakery," the firm said in a statement.
"We are planning this development in spite of adverse conditions including an excessive rent. We have fought for a market reflective rent in court cases up to and including the Supreme Court where unfortunately we received an adverse ruling," said group CEO, John Cahill.
When it reopens in the Autumn, it's expected that the café's opening hours will be reduced and there will be just 70 employees.