Flower Cafe

Flower power as new venue unveiled

A NEW cafe bar has been unveiled as the latest operator to invest in Sunderland’s Keel Square.  

Flower Cafe – the third concept venue opened by Sayturk Group Ltd – will take the fourth and final unit under the Holiday Inn at Riverside Sunderland, with a planning application revealing a CGI of a playful floral exterior, in keeping with the other venues in Newcastle’s Grainger Town and Alnwick. 

The Sunderland venue – which will also feature a pavement cafe running along High Street West – will complement The Botanist and Keel Tavern, both of which are now open to the public, and The Muddler, which is expected to join them later this year, all operating out of the new spaces that stand beneath the city centre hotel.  

Flower Cafe is described as featuring ‘an eccentric mix of global design accents, centred around a playful floral influence’ and will offer a continental style service from breakfast to late nights, and a menu of great cocktails, beers, patisserie, gourmet sandwiches, sweet treats, gelato ice creams and healthy options.

The first Flower Cafe opened in 2021 and proved so much of a hit with Tynesiders that a second cafe was opened in Alnwick at the end of 2023. It is hoped the Sunderland cafe bar will enjoy similar success.

Zafer Saygillier of Sayturk Group Ltd confirmed plans to open in the city. Gerard McElvenny from Pulp Studios Design House, who also helped design Keel Tavern and the recently revamped Gatsby’s, said the aim was to create a vibrant new place that would fit well with the other places to enjoy at Keel Square. 

He said: “We’re delighted to have helped shape plans for a stunning new cafe bar that will provide a colourful new addition to Sunderland’s hospitality scene.  

“The plans will bring something different to the city, a place that can be enjoyed by day and by evening by people who live and work in Sunderland as well as those who visit.”

Plans feature an eclectic arrangement of seating, to provide cosy corners and larger areas for informal dining or special occasions.

The venue will have 113 covers inside and 46 in the outdoor space. Flower Café is expected to create 20 new jobs and it is hoped it will open later this year. 

Peter McIntyre, executive director of city development at Sunderland City Council, said: “Flower Cafe has been a huge success in Newcastle and like the hospitality groups behind The Botanist, the Keel Tavern and The Muddler, it is wonderful to see another business that has traditionally focused on locations North of the Tyne seeing the huge potential in our transforming city. 

“We’ve worked hard to make sure that Sunderland attracts the best venues, and this is another example of that. We hope residents enjoy this exciting new offer.”

To stay up to date with the latest news about developments at Riverside Sunderland, visit www.riversidesunderland.co.uk or follow RiversideSund on social media.