Loungers Launches a New Restaurant Rollout Aimed at Reinvigorating Roadside Dining in the UK

Loungers, a leading nationwide operator of all day café-bars and restaurants under the Lounge and Cosy Club brands, is pleased to announce the launch of a new roadside restaurant brand, Brightside.

The Group sees great potential to reinvigorate roadside dining in the UK, a sector that it believes has become tired and uninspiring. Loungers has acquired three sites initially, the first of which is set to open on the A38, south of Exeter, in February 2023. Further sites will open on the A303 near Honiton, and on the A38 near Saltash, in the spring.

Loungers believes there is scope to develop a truly national brand and has ambitious plans to roll out Brightside to all corners of the UK in the coming years. It is envisaged that sites will be situated predominantly on A-roads, and will focus on bringing genuine hospitality back to a sector that has been dominated by drive-thru and QSR (quick service restaurant) concepts in recent years.

Brightside will offer a freshly cooked menu full of classic, comfort food-style dishes – including an extensive brunch menu, burgers, pizzas, and kids’ menu – in nostalgic surroundings. The roadside restaurants will appeal to a broad range of customers including families, locals, and UK holidaymakers.

Brightside will share the same core DNA of the Lounge and Cosy Club brands – a focus on all-day dining to appeal to a broad audience, a fierce commitment to value for money, and run by teams that deliver exceptional service. Brightside roadside restaurants will be friendly, warm and wholesome and will endeavour to bring back the pleasure of heading out and exploring.

Commenting, Alex Reilley, Founder Chairman of Loungers, said:

“We’ve had the itch for a while now to create a roadside restaurant concept that’s fit-for-purpose in the twenty-first century. For many people, the highlight of childhood road trips in days gone by was a stop at the likes of Little Chef. We believe there is a gap in the market for a fresh concept that gives customers the option to take a proper break and enjoy wholesome food and great hospitality, in a landscape that is currently dominated by drive-thru and QSR formats.

“Brightside will have a contemporary, welcoming, and warm feel, whilst also evoking nostalgia for a time when motoring in the UK was a more exciting experience. We want it to be an integral part of our customers’ journey-planning, and something both adults and children alike look forward to. We believe that Brightside will really shake up what has become an uninspiring sector and that there is potential to roll out Brightside across the UK in the coming years. Our expertise in high-quality, great value all-day dining, developed through Lounge and Cosy Club, gives us confidence that Brightside can bring proper hospitality back to roadside dining across the UK.”

Loungers currently operates 175 Lounges and 35 Cosy Club venues around the UK. The Group recently announced it was accelerating its site roll-out programme, targeting 30 new openings in the current financial year and between 32 and 34 on an ongoing basis. These initial three Brightside openings fall within these forecast new site opening numbers. Loungers recently opened its 210th site – Barco Lounge in Selby – on Saturday 5 November.