Bosses say "the trading figures for the restaurant do not justify keeping the operation open"
Manchester fine dining restaurant The Rabbit has announced it is to close next month.
Located on the top floor of Urbis in Cathedral Gardens, the Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs backed restaurant - opened in December 2016 - was billed as a 'boundary pushing space-age Asian dining experience'.
However, the sudden dismissal of head chef Luke Cotterill in September 2017 and departure of Michelin star-winning creative director Michael O'Hare in June 2018 suggested all was not well.
The shareholders want to focus resources on the roll out of hotels
Following a temporary closure, the restaurant was rebooted with a new look and a 'stronger, bolder and refined menu' headed up by new head chef John Granaghan - who had worked under O'Hare at the Man Behind The Curtain in Leeds.
Just months later and The Rabbit in the Moon underwent another rethink, dropping 'The Moon' and relaunching as The Rabbit.
Despite the changes, the once cosmic restaurant refused to take off and the team say they will serve their last meal on Saturday 17 November.
A spokesperson for the restaurant said: “As a result of a number of factors, the trading figures for the restaurant do not justify keeping the operation open and the shareholders want to focus resources on the roll out of hotels which are ultimately the core of the business.
"With effect from the 18th of November, the venue will be used for corporate and private events only. The team at The Rabbit will continue to operate the venue under the GG Events & Catering brand.”
The announcement follows the closure of another Giggs and Neville venture, Mahiki, which bowed out in June, and the very recent demise of fellow city centre-based fine dining restaurant, Manchester House, which closed its doors alongside sister venue The Artisan earlier this month.
The Rabbit is the latest in a string of restaurants to come and go on the top floor of Urbis, following Le Mont, The Modern and Kaleido - which closed in 2013.