West Wales hotel owners serve up success at new restaurant backed by a loan from Finance Wales

A Saundersfoot restaurant is celebrating a successful first year having welcomed 25,000 diners, won numerous awards and achieved critical acclaim.

 Overlooking Saundersfoot’s Coppet Hall beach, Coast employs a committed team of 10 full-time staff and has received AA Rosettes and scored highly in the Good Food Guide. It was also commended at the recent National Tourism Awards for Wales.

The attractive, purpose-built restaurant was the brainchild of local property developer, David Lewis.  He joined forces with Neil Kedward and Zoe Agar, who own and run the exclusive Grove hotel in Narbeth, to bring the idea to life.

A micro loan from Finance Wales enabled the couple to launch Coast in April 2014, create a dining experience that matched the high standards of their hotel and recruit Michelin-starred chef Will Holland for the restaurant.

Reflecting on a whirlwind 12 months, Neil said: “Having successfully built up the Grove hotel in Narbeth, Zoe and I were excited about creating a high-quality restaurant in such an inspiring location.  We’ve been busy since we opened and get a great mix of locals and tourists who enjoy the amazing seasonal menus our head chef Will creates.  Our guest-chef nights, where we welcome big names from leading venues across the UK are also popular.

“Running a busy hotel we never had plans to open a restaurant but when this  opportunity came along we knew it was the right thing to do. Finance Wales’ loan was crucial in helping us to get Coast off the ground and we’re now in a great position to build on our success in the coming years.”

With local produce featuring strongly on its menus, Coast has developed strong ties with West Wales suppliers such as Capestone Organic and Dash Seafood.  All its fish and crab meat is sourced from local fishermen and the vegetable garden of the Grove hotel supplies the restaurant with fresh produce.

Finance Wales Investment Executive, Gaynor Morris made the loan to Zoe and Neil. She said: “Zoe and Neil have a great deal of vision and determination and they’ve already established one successful business. Coast also has all the ingredients for success: It’s a hit with the locals as well as visitors and in a location that’s second-to-none.  It also has an award-winning head chef and an experienced management team with lots of ideas.

“Coast showcases Wales at its best and has won a number of well-deserved awards.  It has already provided a jobs boost in Sundersfoot, creating 10 new full-time jobs and trade opportunities for the numerous local suppliers now supplying their produce to the restaurant.” 

Finance Wales made the loan from the Wales Micro-business Loan Fund.

Micro loans from Finance Wales can help with a range of investment needs, including start-up costs, capital expenditure and stock purchases. Businesses often use them to unlock much-needed additional investment. Finance Wales has a streamlined application process which ensures it can be responsive to businesses’ needs.