Ayman Abdel Jaber, the founder of the Reem Al Bawadi restaurant business, is to launch a new Middle Eastern-style, casual dining restaurant in London’s Leicester Square.
Abdel Jaber, which sold his then seven-strong, Middle East-based Reem Al Bawadi chain to Dubai-listed retailer Marka in 2015 for Dh315m (£66.2m), has acquired the former Haagen Dazs unit in Leicester Square for his new Maison du Mezzé concept.
The new restaurant will sport a contemporary Arabic look and feel and will seat a minimum of 150 covers inside and a minimum of 60 covers in an outside seating area, which will be bordered with planters and covered by awnings and umbrellas.
Charles Benjamin Associates acted on the Leicester Square deal.
Good Stuff Eatery, the US-based burger and shakes concept, had previously been in talks on the site.
It is thought that the UK franchisee for the concept, Rising Sun Holdings, pulled out of acquiring the 4,000sq ft site last year at a rent understood to be c£1.6m per annum.
MCA understands that Wasabi had also been in talks on the property for what would have become a flagship site in the capital for the brand.
Under Jaber, Reem Al Bawadi owned and operated four outlets in Dubai. It also had three franchised outlets, in Dubai, Jeddah and Karachi.