Compass Group has won a £26m contract to rejuvenate the catering operations at Edinburgh Zoo.
The caterer has been tasked with ensuring the food offer becomes a key part of the visitor experience as part of the 10-year deal, while also providing a more commercial focus for the Zoo's catering operation.
The Compass team will operate all of he zoo's eateries, following a refurbishment and rebranding programme that will see the Jungle Café transformed into the Jungle Food Court. The existing Stripes Restaurant will be turned into Grasslands Restaurant, which will include a deli bar and coffee bar.
Scottish creative agency 442 has been brought in to theme areas of the dining outlets taking inspiration from the main animal habitats represented at the zoo: rainforest, grassland, woodland, oceans and wetland.
Roy Westwood, creative manager for sport, leisure and hospitality at Compass, said: "We have worked very closely with 442 to ensure that our new concepts are unique to the fantastic environment of the Zoo. All of our designs are incredibly creative and are in-keeping with retail design normally found in the high-street.
He added that Compass was also keen to ensure that the design works in synergy with our food offer. "For instance our main restaurant will feature elements of front-of-house food theatre and front-of-house pizza making and baking, allowing customers to see our chefs preparing dishes right before their eyes."
Andrew Roberts, commercial manager for the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, said that Compass Group's commercial experience and financial investment will take the eatery experience here to the next level. "We're delighted to be able to provide this fresh and contemporary offer to visitors to Edinburgh Zoo, and the recent launch of Grasslands has been well received by visitors," he added.
By Janie Stamford
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