Café Spice Namaste in east London's Whitechapel is set to permanently close its doors at the end of January 2021, but is to reopen in Shoreditch early in the new year.
Opened by Cyrus and Pervin Todiwala over 25 years ago, the pair announced the closure along with news of the move. They said, 'Unfortunately today we have the responsibility of announcing the closure of Café Spice Namaste. Early in the New Year, the Todiwala’s will be moving to different premises, not too far away in Shoreditch.'
Loyal diners Nick Gooding, John Minton and Howard Townson have launched a Friends of Café Spice Namaste Donation Fund towards the costs of moving and setting up a new home for the restaurant.
The trio said, “We have been patrons of Café Spice Namaste for well over 25 years going back to the earlier Namaste (the Todiwala’s first restaurant in Ailie Street). We have always found it an exceptional restaurant, not just for its first-class food but because of the warm-hearted welcome and genuine hospitality which we think second to none.
“Now times are hard for them all. This is true in the restaurant trade generally and most are struggling to survive. The Café Spice Namaste team are simultaneously facing other difficulties which, despite their conviction to ride out the Covid storm, are making it hard for them to go forward.
“The thought of life without Café Spice namaste fills us with dismay! So, we have decided to offer what may be small help but, we hope, large encouragement by setting up a ‘Friends of Café Spice Namaste’ collection.'
Cyrus Todiwala said, “After 25 years, the time has come to bid goodbye to our beloved Grade II-listed former magistrates court in Prescot Street. It has been and will be a very difficult time for us, but there is hope too.
“We are extremely grateful to Nick, John and Howard who came up with the idea to launch a Friends of Café Spice fund. Theirs is an incredible gesture, which has bowled us over. We can only say at this point a humble ‘thank you’ if you choose to become a Friend of Café Spice Namaste in this way too.
'The funds will be tightly ring-fenced for the costs of moving and setting up a new home for Café Spice Namaste. Your generosity will forever be etched in our hearts, and as we navigate the current situation, we will be looking at several ways, linked to our food and service, that we can thank you for believing in us.”
The Todiwala's also operate Mr Todiwala's, which has sites at the Hilton London Heathrow, Lincoln Plaza hotel in Canary Wharf, and in Essex.