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Levy Restaurants makes Somerset House its home for the next 15 years with contract extension

Levy Restaurants UK, the sport, leisure and hospitality sector of Compass Group UK & Ireland has extended its contract with Somerset House for a further 15 years.

Compass Group news team
Thursday 09 October 2014


Somerset House

Worth almost £6 million a year, this contract extension – starting in July 2015- will take the partnership through to 2030 and will see existing services continued, including those run in partnership with renowned chef Tom Aikens; Tom’s Kitchen, Tom’s Kitchen Deli, Tom’s Kitchen Terrace and Tom’s Kitchen Events.

As part of the new deal, Levy Restaurants UK will be opening a new café bar at Somerset House this autumn. Pennethorne’s Cafe Bar is named after Sir James Pennethorne, a 19th century English architect who designed the Somerset House New Wing in which the new café bar will reside.

The 85-cover Pennethorne’s Cafe Bar is inspired by Pennethorne’s travels across Europe during the Grand Tour. The menu brings classic flavours from the Grand Tour travels to France, Italy and Spain to life with a modern English twist.

At the heart of the Pennethorne menu is the bakery, located on site at Somerset House and baking specialist breads and pastries throughout the day. Served morning, noon and night, freshly brewed coffees, craft beers and the finest selection of English and European wines accompany the menu. The menu features all-day dining small plates.

Jonathan Davidson, business director for leisure at Levy Restaurants UK said: “We’re passionate about delivering great experiences and have worked really hard to deliver an innovative service at Somerset House. I’m thrilled that we’ve been awarded a further 15 year contract. We can’t wait to open Pennethorne’s Cafe Bar; we’re focusing on quality, simplicity and freshness with a nod to Sir James Pennethorne himself, it’s going to be fantastic.”

Mark Hislop, Commercial Director at Somerset House Trust said: “Somerset House is an iconic cultural venue that is popular with visitors of all ages and is a truly unique London landmark receiving over 2.4 million visits per annum. We wanted to provide our visitors with a range of restaurant and cafes that meet the needs of all our visitors and reflect the ethos and atmosphere of Somerset House. Our partnership with Levy Restaurants UK is enabling us to deliver this vision; we look forward to continue to work with them and in creating the new Pennethorne’s Cafe Bar which we’re all really excited about.”  

Somerset House is a spectacular neo-classical building in the heart of London, sitting between the Strand and the River Thames. Somerset House also hosts open-air concerts and films, contemporary art and design exhibitions, family workshops and free guided tours.


Media Contact:

Rachel Branigan
Compass Group UK and Ireland
01895 554210 | 07468 708847