Log In

Reset Password

Restaurant owner eyeing a third location

First Prev 1 2 Next Last
Steady traffic: Jean-Claude Garzia, left, JC’s Café owner, makes 200 crepes with executive chef and manager Cesar Domingo. Mr Garzia and his staff have been developing the restaurant in the Walker Arcade, on Reid Street, Hamilton, since December (Photograph supplied)

After struggling to keep the doors open during the social-distancing days of the pandemic, restaurateur Jean-Claude Garzia has weathered the storm.

“People have come back into the city now,” said Mr Garzia, who in 2021 said the pandemic was the worst time he had seen over the course of 40 years in business.

But he is now considering opening a third location, after launching the second, JC’s Café Arcade in the Walker Arcade on Reid Street in Hamilton, last December.

“I have an application in for a space,” the industry veteran said. “These things take time, though.”

JC’s Café executive chef and manager Cesar Domingo said running two restaurants has had its challenges.

“When revenue is low at JC’s Café Arcade, we have had to use money from the Victoria Street restaurant to cover it,” he said.

However, after six months in operation, JC’s Café Arcade is seeing steady traffic.

“Saturday morning breakfast is our busiest time there,” Mr Domingo said. “The egg’s Benedict is really popular.”

The restaurant on Victoria Street is busiest during weekday lunch, with clients mainly coming from the surrounding offices. Mr Garzia and Mr Domingo also do a lot of catering there for large groups.

Mr Garzia said: “We recently made 200 crepes for a party of lawyers celebrating a birthday. That was a lot of work.”

They see a completely different group of customers on Reid Street.

“We are starting to see more tourists,” Mr Domingo said.

Revamped dining service: the space that JC’s Café Arcade occupies in the Walker Arcade has been refreshed and revamped (Photograph supplied)

Developing dinner clientele for the Victoria Street restaurant had been challenging. For some time, it had only been offered on Fridays and Saturdays.

“It was very up and down,” Mr Garzia said. “Sometimes we can have 30 people for dinner and sometimes we have two. I spoke to the previous manager of the restaurant in this space, and he said they were never busy for dinner.”

He felt the dinner crowd simply preferred restaurants in southern Hamilton.

For that reason, Mr Garzia has moved dinner service to Reid Street.

“We think business will be much better at JC’s Café Arcade,” Mr Garzia said. “There are a lot more people in that area in the evenings.”

Dinner is served Tuesday to Saturday until 11pm, and will include Mr Garzia’s signature dish, beef Wellington.

Breakfast, lunch and party hosting will continue from the Victoria Street location.

Meanwhile at Walker Arcade, they have upgraded the kitchen appliances and equipment, and revamped the dining space.

“It is a lot brighter now and looks more spacious,” Mr Garzia said.

The previous restaurant in that spot had been closed for several years before Mr Garzia moved in. He is busy trying to market his latest project.

“We have hired the services of a company called Aurelius Advertising run by three young Bermudians,” Mr Garzia said. “They post on social media for us. We can really see the difference.”

You must be Registered or to post comment or to vote.

Published June 21, 2024 at 8:00 am (Updated June 22, 2024 at 8:18 am)

Restaurant owner eyeing a third location

What you
Need to
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon