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Hotel to build Covid-safe outdoor restaurant

PUBLISHED: 11:05 22 August 2020 | UPDATED: 11:06 22 August 2020

Chris Graveling, co-owner of The Grove in Cromer. Picture: Staff

Chris Graveling, co-owner of The Grove in Cromer. Picture: Staff

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A North Norfolk hotel has lodged plans to build a Covid-19 secure outdoor restaurant and venue which is able to withstand the worst of the British weather.

The Grove Restaurant gains two AA Rosettes for their exceptional standard of food and service.
PHOTO: ANTONY KELLYThe Grove Restaurant gains two AA Rosettes for their exceptional standard of food and service. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

The Grove, in Overstrand Road, Cromer, has lodged plans with North Norfolk District Council to erect a seasonal tipi restaurant and function space on one of its lawns.

Taking the form of two giant canvas tipis, similar in design to temporary structures the hotel uses for weddings, the seasonal restaurant and function space would be designed to be Covid-19 secure using the “latest guidance and technology”.

If approved the new al-fresco dining space would operate from spring to autumn, would create new full time and part-time jobs and increase the business’s ability to host functions throughout the year.

Chris Graveling, one of the co-owners of The Grove, said if approved the new tipi would be an exciting development for the venue.

The lawn where, if permission is granted, The Grove hopes to place a seasonal tipi restaurant. Picture: StaffThe lawn where, if permission is granted, The Grove hopes to place a seasonal tipi restaurant. Picture: Staff

He said: “It will give us a chance to create a bespoke area, observing social distancing, using infrared hand sanitisers, that will be Covid-19 secure.”

Mr Graveling said the idea for the new outdoor dining space came after the venue had seen a boom in popularity for its outdoor dining and pizza menu, particularly in the wake of coronavirus.

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“This year we bought a pizza oven and started doing outdoor dining for Covid-19 reasons and within a week or so we had to buy a second pizza oven because they were so popular, so now we’re thinking this could be really something.

“Initially we all thought [social distancing] would be around for a month or two but it looks like it’s going to be here for quite a while, so [if approved the tipi] is going to be quite good and it’s going to function as a summer restaurant next year.

“It’s going to be a really great place,” he said.

Mr Graveling said he was also excited about the ability to host functions the new tipi would offer: “Our business has been diversifying and expanding and changing ever since it started in the 1930s: this is a continuation of that really.”


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