Restaurant owner banks on fresh flavours of Med
Diners can enjoy a taste of the Mediterranean in Ashford after the town centre’s latest restaurant opened in a former bank.
Shen’s Mediterranean Cuisine in Bank Street has opened on a site that has stood empty since 2000, when TSB merged with Lloyds Bank.
After Lloyds TSB was broken up in 2013, the TSB opened a new branch further up Bank Street.
But businessman Shen Sen, who also runs the Express Cafe in the High Street, has now opened the Turkish inspired restaurant, which includes up to 80 covers.
He said: “It’s a very different kind of restaurant, I could see the demand for it in Ashford as it’s something we’ve not had before. It will serve mezzes and tapas style foods which will be homemade on the premises.
“I run the Cafe Express and the Fish Inn in South Ashford and I’ve been in Ashford for 17 years, so I’m always looking to invest in business here.”
He added: “I have put my name to this restaurant because I am proud to do so. People in town know me and I want to have a good reputation.”
Mr Sen is following in the footsteps of the Que’s Smokehouse which opened last year at the bottom of the street and hopes the development of the new cinema complex will boost business and attract more customers.
Meanwhile property advis- ers Christie and Co are looking for a new buyer to take on Vinnie’s Bar and Club on the corner of Bank Street and Queen Street.
The property is for sale on a 12-year lease at a rent of £35,000 per year.
The new cinema complex includes plans for up to eight restaurants and a new Travelodge hotel.
The nearby Trafalgar House is also set to become home to up to three new restaurants on the ground floor, while flats are being created above.
Shen Sen outside his restaurant in Bank Street, Ashford