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Longmartin Properties Ltd, a joint venture between Shaftesbury Capital and the Mercers’ Company, has announced that Aqua Restaurant Group has chosen The Yards, Covent Garden as its location of choice to launch its latest Italian deli and bakery concept, Luci. Reinforcing the destination’s appeal in securing high-quality restaurant debuts, Luci will occupy a 9,000 sq ft space at 136 Long Acre and specialise in authentic Italian flavours.

Set to open later this year, Luci will be led by Aqua’s Head Chef, Andrea Pesenti and will bring together the finest ingredients sourced from genuine Italian producers. The Yards restaurant will operate over three levels, with a grab and go offer on the ground floor featuring a Bancone counter filled with an abundant range of freshly baked sourdough loaves, traditional Italian sandwiches, hearty salads and sweets and pastries. The first floor will be used as an intimate dining space where customers can enjoy woodfire pizza, traditional pasta, focaccia, and a gelato counter, whilst the basement level will house a prep kitchen.

Luci will join Aqua Restaurant Group’s prestigious portfolio of restaurants across Hong Kong, New York, Miami, and Dubai, with Luci marking its sixth location in London, sitting beside Aqua Shard, Shiro, Aqua Kyoto, Aqua Nueva, and Hutong. The new restaurant will also join several high-quality debuts at The Yards, such as the recently opened Olea Social and Gura Gura, as well as local favourites Lahpet, Dishoom, and Dalla Terra.

David Yeo, CEO and founder of the Aqua Restaurant Group, says of the opening: “Luci was born from a love of Italian food, and we want to bring that passion to The Yards, Covent Garden. No matter what time of the day, we want our customers to be able to enjoy delicious, top-quality food and drinks, whether a Cappuccino and a pistachio cornetto for breakfast or a slice of pizza and a Negroni as a nightcap. That is where Luci will fill a gap for Covent Garden.”

On behalf of Longmartin Properties Ltd, Abi Labbett, Asset Manager at CBRE, also said: “Aqua Restaurant Group is a globally recognised, culinary empire with some of the most ground-breaking restaurants in the industry, and we’re delighted that it has selected The Yards as its destination of choice when expanding its portfolio within the capital. Over the last year, we have welcomed several new restaurants to The Yards, curating a destination which delivers authenticity, vibrance, and choice. The arrival of Luci will elevate this even further, providing consumers with a bespoke Italian experience that can be enjoyed day or night, reinforcing The Yards’ position as a go-to destination in the West End.”

The signing of Luci at The Yards follows the news that Olea Social, the modern Mediterranean restaurant, has opened its debut site at 10 Upper St Martin’s Lane. With 200 covers, the day-to-night Mediterranean hub reboots traditional cuisine and delivers a ‘new authentic’, serving small plates paired with regional wines and exclusive cocktails.

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