Loungers looks on the Brightside with nostalgic roadside dining brand

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Loungers looks on the Brightside with nostalgic roadside dining brand

Related tags Loungers Alex reilley Casual dining Mollie's Motel & Diner R200 Multi-site

Restaurant group Loungers is creating a new roadside dining brand designed to fill the void left by the demise of brands such as Little Chef and Happy Eater.

Called Brightside, the first restaurant will open on the A38, south of Exeter, in February 2023, with two additional south west of England locations to follow quickly in the spring.

The group, which operates 175 Lounges and 35 Cosy Club venues around the UK, says it sees great potential to reinvigorate roadside dining in the UK, a once important part of the UK’s on-the-go dining sector that has dwindled over the past few decades.

Its focus, it says, will bring ‘genuine hospitality’ back to a sector that has been dominated by drive-thru and QSR concepts in recent years.

Loungers believes there is scope to develop a truly national brand and has ambitious plans to roll out Brightside to all parts of the UK in the coming years.

Sites will be situated predominantly on A-roads, with the next two openings sited on the A303 near Honiton, and on the A38 near Saltash, in the spring.  

Brightside will serve a menu of classic, comfort food-style dishes, including an extensive brunch menu, burgers, pizzas, and kids’ menu.

The roadside restaurants will have a nostalgic feel to them and have been designed to appeal to a broad range of customers including families, locals, and UK holidaymakers.  

Burger-loungers

“We’ve had the itch for a while now to create a roadside restaurant concept that’s fit-for-purpose in the twenty-first century. For many people, the highlight of childhood road trips in days gone by was a stop at the likes of Little Chef. We believe there is a gap in the market for a fresh concept that gives customers the option to take a proper break and enjoy wholesome food and great hospitality, in a landscape that is currently dominated by drive-thru and QSR formats,” says Loungers founder chairman Alex Reilley.

“Brightside will have a contemporary, welcoming, and warm feel, whilst also evoking nostalgia for a time when motoring in the UK was a more exciting experience. We want it to be an integral part of our customers’ journey-planning, and something both adults and children alike look forward to.

“We believe that Brightside will really shake up what has become an uninspiring sector and that there is potential to roll out Brightside across the UK in the coming years. Our expertise in high-quality, great value all-day dining, developed through Lounge and Cosy Club, gives us confidence that Brightside can bring proper hospitality back to roadside dining across the UK.”    

Roadside dining is currently undergoing a but of a renaissance. Affordable hotel and diner brand Mollie’s Motel & Diner opened its first venue in Buckland, Oxfordshire, followed by a second at Cribbs Causeway in Bristol. The brand has since announced plans to expand to around 100 sites ​over the next 10 years with its formats, that include roadside locations with around 75 bedrooms and a 145-cover diner.

Related topics Restaurant Openings Casual Dining

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