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Restaurants make over Rs 1,100 crore as Kolkata splurges on food during Durga puja

Kolkata: During the just-concluded Durga puja festival, revellers of Kolkata not only spent hours and overwhelmed by the pandals, idols and overall decorations, besides thronging restaurants to satisfy their taste buds.

The fine dining restaurants of the city made Rs 1,100 crore in six days culminating on ‘Dashami’, the last day of the festival, which is more than 20 per cent of the earnings in the same period last year, according to the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Eastern India (HRAEI).

This is the second Durga puja after all curbs related to the Covid-19 pandemic were withdrawn.

The buoyancy remained on all six days till Dashami as foodies were found till 3 am across eateries, said HRAEI President Sudesh Poddar Poddar, who is also the owner of a fine dining restaurant cum bar in Kolkata.

“As per preliminary estimates, restaurants in the city did over Rs 1,100 crore business during the period,” Poddar told PTI.

A spokesperson of HRAEI said there has been a 20-25 per cent rise in sales compared to the figure last year.

He said the sales in some popular restaurants in the city were even better than the pre-Covid days of 2019.

“Two years after the Covid-19 situation and the lockdown, the feel-good factor, which was apparent in 2022, continues. People are enjoying the experience of dining out and watching films in theatres,” said Nitin Kothari, owner of three restaurants including two iconic ones – Mocambo and Peter Cat.

Even during sudden showers on ‘Navami’ afternoon, all three eateries were filled to capacity, he claimed.

“During this year’s Durga Puja, we’ve been blessed to see a surge in enthusiasm from patrons from across the state,” said Azra Asher Ather, the Sales Director of Aminia, a 95-year-old restaurant brand.

In comparison to last year, there was a 10-12 per cent growth in sales across all outlets during the Durga Puja period, Ather said.

“During the four days from Saptami to Dashami, a remarkable 1,812 patrons, averaging an impressive 453 guests per day, went to our restaurant in Salt Lake area,” owner of Ambrosia Bar and Restaurant, Supratik Ghosh, said.

(Published 29 October 2023, 10:36 IST)

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