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Ipswich restaurant Casablanca closes after devastating impact of coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 10:36 27 June 2020 | UPDATED: 11:28 27 June 2020

Casablanca Moroccan and Lebanese restaurant in Ipswich is closing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the loss of trade. Picture: Archant

Casablanca Moroccan and Lebanese restaurant in Ipswich is closing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and the loss of trade. Picture: Archant

Archant

A popular Ipswich restaurant said it has been “battered and bruised” by the coronavirus pandemic as it closes its doors for the final time.

Casablanca Moroccan and Lebanese restaurant in Ipswich's Tacket Street is closing Casablanca Moroccan and Lebanese restaurant in Ipswich's Tacket Street is closing "indefinitely" as a result of Covid-19. Picture: SU ANDERSON

Casablanca in the town’s Tacket Street is closing “indefinitely” after three months of lost trade following the lockdown restrictions, which have had a devastating impact on the hospitality industry.

The Lebanese/Moroccan restaurant, which is owned by head chef Farhad Amin, said the closure comes with a “heavy heart” after years of running the well-loved restaurant in Ipswich – which was often ranked one of the best in the town.

In a statement to its customers, Casablanca, said: “The last three months have seen us close our doors in an effort to protect our customers and staff from the dangers of the coronavirus pandemic.

“This has been an unprecedented time for our industry and although we completely understand the reason why this has had to happen, we have been left battered and bruised by an inability to trade through what would normally be a very busy time of year for us.

“As a result of this it is with a heavy heart that we now notify you of our decision to close Casablanca restaurant indefinitely.”

The restaurant opened its doors back in 2016, after Farhad moved to England with his family and learnt a lot about the town from his time as a taxi driver.

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He and his wife then decided to open Casablanca, using the finest spices from Morocco and freshly cooking everything on the premises using a large grill.

The team at Casablanca added “this has not been an easy decision to make”, especially considering the time and effort dedicated by their wonderful staff.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank you all so much for your custom over the last few years,” they said.

“We have had some great times, made lots of friends and you have made us feel so welcome as part of Ipswich’s local business community.”

Once the restaurant was told to close back in March, Farhad and his team used their supplies to provide free meals for NHS workers.

They cooked 70 delicious hot meals for staff at Ipswich Hospital working on the frontline during the coronavirus outbreak.

Following the news of their closure, Casablanca is holding an open event on Sunday, June 28 from 8am onwards, where all items from the restaurant will be on sale to the general public.

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