LOGAN Galbraith was poised to open a hotel in South East Asia until another business opportunity presented itself more than 6,000 miles away.
That is why and fittingly for a man with a finance background, Royton’s former Yorkshire Bank, closed since May 2017, has been transformed into a new bar and restaurant.
JLR’s Live Lounge in Market Square only opened on February 9 but already Logan and business partner, James ‘Jimmy’ Marshall are preparing to provide a greater range of dining opportunities.
That is why from March 16 customers will have choice of breakfast and high tea options in addition to the Live Lounge’s existing range of culinary options.
And it is further proof, if evidence is needed, Royton’s reputation as a go to place for dining and drinking is growing.
Further investment could be on the cards for the Rochdale Road precinct.
“The feedback is local bars are much busier than they have been in the past,” explained Logan.
“I think it works when an area has a certain critical mass of size. People like to go to two or three places on a night out and we have got that in Royton now.
“It is an up and coming suburb and has got lots of good things happening.
“It is a reasonably affluent suburb and a nice community so I thought this venture would be well received.
“I saw there were other investments that had been successful, restaurants and bars. So, we negotiated a lease for the building and off we went.”
However, Logan admits he initially needed convincing about the investment.
“I worked in Australia, Mexico and south east Asia for 22 years but thought I wanted to do something different and open a hotel.
“I was negotiating a lease but popped back to see my friend Jimmy who is from Royton. He suggested, ‘Why not do it here instead?’ which I said was a terrible idea.
“But he showed me the venue and I thought it was just a perfect venue
“It was a three month build process which we managed ourselves. That was probably a bit bold as neither of us are builders.
“It was challenging but fun and it all went well. We have made a few tweaks and changes but we have had great feedback.
“People have asked if we are a bar or a restaurant. We are definitely a restaurant and we are definitely a bar.
“So, we are trying to do something that not everyone does which is try to be both things.
“But we are more than that. “it is such a big site (covering units 2-4) we are looking at using the building very flexibly.”
Live Lounge presently opens from 12noon, seven days a week offering casual dining, full à la carte menu, cocktails, premium beers, wines and real ale plus live music.
Food is served until 8.45pm apart from weekends when it finishes at 7.30pm to give way to live entertainment
Rakesh Joshi, asset manager for LCP commercial property developers and management companies, said: “It’s great to see local entrepreneurs coming in to create a high-end venue in the centre of town.
“It is a welcome addition to Market Square and to Royton as a whole.
“It’s helping to breathe new life into the retail centre and with JLR Live Lounge opening, we are already looking to attract further leisure, food and beverage outlets to open there. We hope we can announce further occupiers soon.”