The party’s over with clo­sure of three venues


FAM­I­LIES AR­RANG­ING sim­chahs this year have suf­fered a blow with the clo­sures of three pop­u­lar party venues.

The Kens­ing­ton Roof Gar­dens and Gil­gamesh, both in Lon­don, closed this month, and Bushey Coun­try Club, in Hert­ford­shire, is due to shut down in April.

Vir­gin, which has op­er­ated the Roof Gar­dens since the early 1980s, told the JC that said that the de­ci­sion to close had been taken “in the face of un­pre­dictable mar­ket con­di­tions and a chal­lenge to re­main prof­itable”.

A spokesper­son said that “all de­posits have been re­turned to guests and agents” and that no book­ings were taken af­ter the de­ci­sion to close was reached in De­cem­ber.

Gil­gamesh shut up shop in­def­i­nitely last Satur­day, to un­dergo “ma­jor build­ing re­fur­bish­ment”.

A spokesman for the own­ers of the Asian fu­sion restau­rant said: “This is not the end of Gil­gamesh at all. It is merely tak­ing a break. The Gil­gamesh brand is so loved that it will be reap­pear­ing soon.”

There were no out­stand­ing sim­cha book­ings and Gil­gamesh said that those re­quest­ing reser­va­tions will be of­fered ta­bles in ei­ther of its two nearby sis­ter restau­rants, Shaka Zulu and Ga­beto.

Bushey Coun­try Club will close on April 1 due to con­tin­u­ing fi­nan­cial losses. Last year the coun­cil-run Hertsmere Leisure Trust, which man­ages the club, re­ported a short­fall of al­most £700,000.

The trust said book­ings made for af­ter the clos­ing date would be dealt with on an in­di­vid­ual ba­sis, with some fa­cil­i­ties avail­able for re­lo­cat­ing events.

One cou­ple, who are get­ting mar­ried in Au­gust, said their plans had been dis­rupted by the Roof Gar­dens’ clo­sure.

Nick Levine and his fi­ancée, who did not wish to be named, are cur­rently at­tempt­ing to se­cure the re­turn of their de­posit from a wed­ding plan­ner af­ter book­ing their re­cep­tion at the Kens­ing­ton venue.

Mr Levine, a busi­ness con­sul­tant from North Lon­don, said: “You’ve got the ac­tual cost of the de­posit, and then there are other costs we will not be able to re­claim, things like ho­tel rooms.

“We’re hope­ful of still do­ing some­thing on that same day, but now our op­tions are mas­sively limited, be­cause it’s only eight months away.”

Kens­ing­ton Roof Gar­dens

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