Whangarei's newest restaurant, The Quay in the Town Basin, opens for business next week.

The Quay at the site of the old Revas Restaurant, is owned by Lloyd Rooney and Michael Fraser, who also own The Cove cafe in Waipu Cove.

It is to open to the public on July 9 preceded by an official opening the previous evening.

The Quay will have 28 staff, including 11 in the kitchen and 17 front of house. Staff will be in training next week for the opening of trade.


Heading the kitchen will John Salisbury, a Kiwi who worked the last eight years in Melbourne kitchens. Mr Rooney said he was really happy to have a chef of Mr Salisbury's calibre "and he's a really nice guy with it", he added.

The second chef is Luke McGowan, who was the head chef at Dough Bros in Hamilton.

Mr Rooney said the restaurant is still considering what could be a signature dish but he said the menu will be eclectic.

"We are not about fine dining - we are about attracting as wide a range of people to the restaurant as possible. At The Cove we were able to create a menu that met a wide range of tastes, and that is our goal for The Quay."

The restaurant will use as much local produce as possible, with most of the vegetables supplied by a grower from the Whangarei Growers Market, fish will be supplied by Adriatic Fisheries in Kensington and meat from his and Mr Fraser's farm in Waipu.

Mr Rooney came to New Zealand 10 years ago after running a pub and a restaurant in London.

As part of the opening, The Hits national drive show hosts Stace and Flynny will be broadcasting live from The Quay from 3pm-7pm on the Friday evening. The pair will mix and mingle with invited guests once their show is finished.

Dillon Johnstone, Whangarei NZME. brand manager for The Hits radio station, who worked to get Stace and Flynny to broadcast from Whangarei, said it was a real coup to get the pair up to Whangarei.

"This is a really big thing for radio here in Northland because very rarely do we get a national radio show broadcasting from our own little backyard. And this is their first time broadcasting in our fair city."