Moroccan restaurant to relocate to new town

PUBLISHED: 16:01 15 June 2018 | UPDATED: 16:17 15 June 2018

Marakech Restaurant in Market Street Wymondam, which will close on June 23 ahead of its relocation to Dereham. Picture: Ali Guenaoui

Marakech Restaurant in Market Street Wymondam, which will close on June 23 ahead of its relocation to Dereham. Picture: Ali Guenaoui


A restauranteur who brought a taste of Morroco to Wymondham is to leave the town - to relocate to Dereham.

Ali Guenaoui. Picture: Ali GuenaouiAli Guenaoui. Picture: Ali Guenaoui

Ali Guenaoui, owner of Marrakech Restaurant in Market Street, has taken to social media to let his customers know that he will be closing his premises and relocating to Dereham, marking the end of a 22-year association with the town.

Announcing the news on the Wymondham Ways Facebook page, he wrote: “To all my lovely customers in Wymondham, I am sorry to say that our last day in Wymondham will be June 23.”

Putting the decision down to “circumstances out of our control”, the restauranteur added: “We are however opening a branch in Dereham soon.

“I would like to say a big thank you to all of you for all your support, although it is time for me to move on I will miss Wymondham.”

marakech Restaurant in Wymondham. Picture: Ali Guenaouimarakech Restaurant in Wymondham. Picture: Ali Guenaoui

Mr Guenaoui opened his first restaurant called Casablanca in the town in 1996 after completing catering and management course at City College in Norwich.

Recalling what it was like to open the town’s first Moroccan restaurant the 53-year old said: “At the time, no-one knew what Moroccan cuisine was.

“But when I first came here as a young man the town really supported me. They are just superb people, they helped me and they are just like a family.”

He said the decision to close the restaurant had not been an easy one, but had been driven the desire to own an larger premises.

Mr Guenaoui said: “It was a really hard decision to make but it is time for me to leave Wymondham.

“I’m not going far though and I am sure all of my customers will come and visit me. I’m keeping the same things but I’ll have a bigger space.

“From the day I arrived I was so welcome. I came as a Moroccan and people have been so welcoming. The people in Wymondham are amazing and I will miss them.”

Closing on June 23, Mr Guenaoui said he hoped to open his new restaurant, in Norwich Street, Dereham, in mid-July.

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