Zandi twins bring a taste of the Riviera to London

Twin brother restaurateurs Alberto and Arian Zandi will open a restaurant called Riviera – inspired by the cuisine of the South of France – in St James’s this autumn. It will be the Zandi’s fourth restaurant and their most prominent, occupying the striking Modernist building next to The Economist magazine that was formerly occupied by Sake no Hana (RIP).

The brothers launched their Emerald Hospitality Group with South American restaurant Zuaya in Kensington in 2018, followed by Italian Como Garden next door and then last year’s El Norte in Mayfair, which is inspired by their native Spain. They have long-term ambitions to open high-end restaurants around the world, with New York their next stop.

The new site will be a good test of their skills: high-end Japanese Sake no Hana was well received by critics and operated by the hugely successful Hakkasan Group, but it never really took off over more than a decade before closing down late last year. The site will be extensively refurbished ahead of the planned November opening, and will provide 170 covers with another 35 on an outdoor terrace.

Alberto said: “This is a very exciting launch. Riviera is set to represent and embody the luxurious lifestyle found in the South of France, in a unique London location.” 

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