The group, which was founded by Peter and Elaine Kinsella in 2010, says the closure will help ensure it can continue to operate its two other restaurants in Liverpool, in Hanover Street and Albert Dock, as well as its online business.
“Our two Liverpool sites are the profitable sites and to protect those, we have had to take the very painful decision to close Manchester to give our remaining businesses in Liverpool a chance and minimise the losses that we will build up as we partially open our Liverpool sites,” the Kinsellas said in a statement.
“The impact of Covid-19 has been profound on our business and we cannot survive the future with three restaurant sites.
“We think that we can manage with two sites opening with partial covers, whenever the government allows us to.”
The pair say they had been in discussions with its Manchester landlord, lenders and government agencies in an attempt to secure additional funding, but has been unsuccessful in its endeavours. “There is no option that we can find that means Lunya Manchester can be viable.”
The Coronavirus is the latest in a line of challenges that the business has faced in recent years. It says the impact of Brexit has had a huge impact on its food import business with the drop in the Euro exchange rate and large increases in business rates, general costs and overheads and that, coupled with the forced closure because of Coronavirus, its Manchester restaurant site is too expensive to operate from.
“No matter what projections we do and what actions we try, sadly we cannot find a way to make it all work,” said the Kinsellas.
Lunya will instead have a ‘virtual’ presence in Manchester and will continue to serve the city’s customers via its online food business. It will be delivering locally and is in discussions with potential partners about a central venue for a click and collect service in the city.
The Kinsellas opened the first Lunya in in Liverpool in 2010, followed by the Manchester restaurant in 2015, and a Lunyalita in Albert Dock in 2018.
They said that in the future, if they could find a smaller, and more cost-effective site in Manchester they could make a return to the city in the future.
“We have grown a fabulous restaurant, bar and deli in Manchester, we have made some great friendships and had some really good times working with our team and giving our customers the very best of Catalan and Spanish food.
“We have wonderful customers and hope through our online, local deliveries and other events we will still enjoy their support and serve them – just in a different way. It will be more ‘hasta pronto’ rather than ‘adios’.
“Manchester hasn’t seen the last of us.”