The Caribbean restaurant on the Thames that opened in the event of a pandemic and is here to stay

In recent years, the London hotel industry has faced great uncertainty with a record number of office closures each year.

The effects of the coronavirus pandemic, which devastated the industry, only exacerbated the problems, however, in and among the debris of the industry, green shoots began to appear.

One restaurant that has managed to weather the worst effects of last year’s closings is Limin ‘Beach Club on Gabriel’s Wharf.

Owner Sham Mahabir, 44, told MyLondon that despite opening for the first time amid the pandemic, he and his team were able to adapt their business model to stay on the safe side of restrictions.

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Now, with 2020 behind them and hope for an end to the lockdown underway, Sham says they’re excited about the future after resisting the majority of restrictions so far.

Sham, who lives in Peckham, described the unique challenges that are opening up in the midst of a global health crisis.

He said: “We found a site at Gabriel’s Wharf in 2019 and were planning to open it in April 2020, but of course COVID has arrived.



Sham opened the Limin ‘Beach Club in 2020

“During the pandemic, we were affected by the lack of tourists and the general attendance on the south shore.

“The main struggle was to adapt the business to the changes in social distancing that were occurring, from moderating the number of toilets to keeping areas clean, like any business in reality.

“The 10pm shutdown hours affected us significantly, so we had to change our business model again for take out services.”

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“We have done exceptionally well after adjusting”



Sham transformed the restaurant into a beach bar

But where many other restaurants have decided to close their doors rather than operate under costly restrictions, Sham and his team decided to see how they could innovate their restaurant in accordance with the regulations.

The results were inspired.

Sham said: “Rather than shutting down, we decided to change the way we operate to try to maximize the customers we had.

“We opened as a beach club, there is a beach by the Thames during the summer months, so we put sand outside and created space for Londoners to enjoy. ‘a socially remote slice of the Caribbean.



And visitors flocked to Limin ‘in droves

“Because the weather was so good, we actually negotiated pretty well.

“Until we had to shut down on Christmas we were also doing exceptionally well, you just have to adapt to what’s thrown at you.”

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“We bring the Caribbean to the UK”



During the lockdown, Sham’s team offered take-out services on Caribbean ingredients

Of course, Sham’s business was once again interrupted by lockdown restrictions that crippled London.

But the entrepreneur from Peckham tells us that once again the Limin ‘Beach Club has tried to innovate out of the economic woes of the pandemic, with a new delivery service.

He explained, “We have take out services and they have proven to be very popular.

“We have delivered boxes of ingredients to places like Wales, Kent and Scotland, we are trying to provide people with products that they cannot get anywhere else.

“We’ve brought the Caribbean to London now, we’re bringing them to the UK as well.”



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Michael M. Tomlin

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