Bar is given new lease of life as Nepalese restaurant
Workmen have been spotted in the former Memphis Bar as the new owners announce it is set to reopen as a Nepalese restaurant.
Susma Subba and her husband Jiwan took over the Apsley Street building last week and are preparing to transform it into The Gurkha Bhansa Ghar, which translates as The Gurkha Kitchen House.
The restaurant is expected to open next month, serving traditional Nepalese, Chinese and Indian food and run by experienced restauranteur Susma.
Husband Jiwan said: “We had a restaurant in Nepal many years go that Susma ran and enjoyed doing so.
“We’ve lived in Ashford for a while now and she has always dreamed of opening one up here, it’s our home.
“We have builders in at the moment completely renovating the place and it is going to look completely different.”
The premises has been closed since Chinese Elvis left the building, formerly the Memphis Bar, earlier this year. Tang Ma, an Elvis Presley impersonator from Hong Kong, ran the Chinese restaurant with his wife Shirley left handwritten signs in the windows to say the business had closed.
Mr Ma, an Elvis Presley superfan, would dress in jumpsuits and sunglasses while he serenaded his diners with songs by the King of rock and roll every night.
Before it became the Memphis Bar, the building was home to legendary alternative music venue The Oranges, which closed in 2012.
But Jiwan says The Gurkha Bhansa Ghar will be much unlike either of the former businesses. He said: “It is going to be very different. “It won’t have a big bar and won’t be a pub, it’s going to be a traditional restaurant serving traditional Nepalese dishes.”