Flying Pizza’s new owner vows return to glory days

Have your say

the future of one of the region’s longest established restaurants has been secured with a pledge to “restore it to its former glory”.

The Flying Pizza in Street Lane, Roundhay, Leeds, has been bought from administrators PKF by award-winning restaurant group San Carlo for an undisclosed sum amid plans to invest £1m in improving the business.

The eaterie has been a favourite of business people, the showbusiness community and generations of customers from the north of the city since it opened in 1974.

But its former owners blamed the recession, increased competition and poor winter weather before Christmas for a downturn in its fortunes.

Administrators were appointed last week and a deal was struck on Monday following a frantic weekend of discussions with a number of parties.

The San Carlo Group is owned and operated by father and son team Carlo and Marcello Distefano, who themselves lived in Roundhay for several years.

Group director Marcello Distefano said the business would invest around £1m at the venue.

“We’re thrilled to acquire Flying Pizza, a restaurant with such a great history,” he said.

“As a family we often ate there in its heyday and our intention is to lavishly restore it to its former glory.

“The venue remains open for business but plans include a full refurbishment and new menus which embrace our signature great authentic Italian food.”

Joint administrator Charles Escott said: “We are delighted to have been able to save the restaurant and the 29 employee jobs that were linked to it.

“I am sure San Carlo’s offer a great future for the restaurant and its clientele and we wish them every success in the future.”

The chain opened a city centre restaurant in Leeds last year and runs seven others around the country including two in Manchester.