The Blues Kitchen Manchester
The historic property will house the first Blues Kitchen outside London

Blues Kitchen to occupy former Walkabout

Dan Whelan

The bar and restaurant chain, inspired by the southern US states’ musical heritage, is due to open its first North West branch next year, after its owner Columbo Group agreed a 25-year lease on 13 Quay Street in Manchester. 

The 35,000 sq ft property, owned by Endless Developments, was previously occupied by Australian bar brand Walkabout but the venue closed at the end of 2015, after its parent company Intertain confirmed it would be opening a different site in the Printworks. 

Columbo Group operates three other Blues Kitchen branches, all in London.

Warwickshire-based Ellis Contracting has been appointed to carry out the internal fit-out of the Manchester site.

The leasing agent for Columbo Group was The Found Agency.

Steve Ball, chief executive of the Columbo Group, said: “When we decided to spread our wings it had to be Manchester, it’s such a cool city. It’s the only other city we’d consider doing anything in.” 

In 2018, spirits giant Pernod Ricard took over 6,000 sq ft on the sixth floor of the building and launched The Loft, a venture that provides “experiential events” around its drinks portfolio. 

In 2013, Development Securities sold the Quay Street building to an anonymous local private investor for a sum in excess of the guide price of £1.5m. 

Your Comments

Read our comments policy here

Great news. So nice to see Peter Street/Quay St now attracting higher quality establishments, which will tie in nicely with the imminent Great Norther refurbishment

By Steve

Love the ones in London, this area will thrive post lockdown as the NQs decline continues

By Murray

Had some lively nights in Quay Street Walkabout in the 2000s.

Bit rough but always worth a few bevvies in there.

By North by North-West