Antrim bar and restaurant closes over rent debts

Antrim bar and restaurant closes over rent debts

A popular Co Antrim restaurant and bar has announced it will be closing its doors after six years of trading, claiming it “cannot afford to pay back the rent” for its location.

Jake’s Cocktail Bar & Grill, which is located in the Junction One International Outlet Centre in Antrim, closed on June 17 but its sister restaurant Moe’s Bar and Grill, which is also in the shopping centre, will remain open with “some” Jake’s Cocktail Bar and Grill staff transferring.

A statement on social media said: “It is with deep sadness that we must announce the closure of Jake’s Cocktail Bar & Grill from today.

“We want to thank all our customers old and new for making Jake’s the special hospitality venue it has become in six years of trading.

“We also want to thank our staff for their special part in making Jake’s the venue it was.

“Unfortunately we will only be able to keep some of the staff on at our sister venue Moes Grill, for the staff that we can’t keep on I can only apologise and hope you can find employment ASAP and have a successful career in whatever you choose to be the next step in your careers.”

The owners said that the Covid pandemic put the restaurant “under serious financial pressure.”

“At the time of Covid our restaurant rents were as follows: Moes Grill Banbridge £95K, Moes Grill Antrim £70K, Redz £70K, Jakes £110K, total of £345K per annum. Our businesses weren’t allowed to trade for two years off and on, but our landlords charged us 100% rents.

“Four years on, we simply cannot afford to pay back the rents for Jake’s, therefore our landlord has taken possession of the building.

“I want to also want to make it clear that our sister restaurant Moes Grill will not be closing and is very much open for business. Lastly our customers can use vouchers purchased at Jake’s in our sister restaurant Moes Grill with no time limit.”