Spending on fine dining in London has increased in the first half of this year despite the economic gloom, research has found.
According to a survey by American Express Business Insights, Londoners continue to eat out at the capital's top restaurants, with overall spend up 8% compared with the same period last year.
Key findings of the report, which was released today to coincide with the London Restaurant Festival, suggest that diners are spending 6.5% more than last year per restaurant visit, while younger people, particularly those aged 18 to 29, show the biggest appetite for fine dining, having increased their spend by 17% year-on-year.
Business customers still spend the most at London's fine dining restaurants and have continued to up their budgets, with a 6% increase compared with 2010, according to the survey.
Men place more importance on fine dining than women do, having driven the growth of the sector by upping their spend 10% year-on-year. Women's spend has remained flat over the six-month period.
Sujata Bhatia, vice president Europe and Asia for American Express Business Insights, said: "London's foodies aren't being deterred by the gloomy economic outlook and are still venturing out for a meal at one of the city's top restaurants.
"With so many great restaurants, London is undoubtedly one of the world's most exciting gastronomic locations, and visitors and locals are making the most of the dining experiences on offer."
By Kerstin Kühn
E-mail your comments to <a onclick="s_objectID=''''mailto:'firstname.lastname@example.org_1';return''Kerstin Kühn here.