An independent outlet selling New York style pizza by the slice alongside local beers and a range of shots has proved so successful that it is due to open two more venues.
Palms Pizzeria was first opened at The Centre in Margate last April by music manager Stuart Clarke and music promoter Josh Ward.
The concept has been a hit with families and night time revellers, meaning the restaurant has bucked the national trend of small businesses going into decline since 2020, partly due to the pandemic and cost of living crisis. Those in the hospitality industry have been hit especially hard.
But Palms Pizzeria is now set to expand with a new location in Canterbury opening on April 29 and another planned for Ramsgate town in the summer.
Stuart, who initially moved to Margate but now lives in Ramsgate with his partner and two children, said: “The inspiration for Palms lies in our shared experiences working and living in New York, where pizza by the slice formed such an essential part of our day.
“Our aim has been to create a spot where we wanted to hang out, while filling a gap in the market between the high street fast food chains and sit down restaurants.
“We had been looking for a site in Margate for a long time and The Centre is a really good site. We get a real mix, through the day it is a family friendly vibe between us and Curve coffee and other businesses, you have the big square which is covered with no roads nearby and at night time with the music venues you have people coming in for pizza and a shot before their night out.
“We both worked in the music industry for a long time, 20 plus years, have both lived in Margate for around seven years and this was something we really wanted to do.
“Now feels like to right time (to expand). It’s really exciting.”
Josh, who lives in Margate, added: “We’re really excited to be opening a second site almost one year to the day since we opened the doors to Margate and hope that Canterbury loves a decent slice of pizza as much as us.
“We serve 20” New York style pizza and think we do it better than anyone else in the South East. Collaborations with other restaurants and chefs form a huge part of what we do at our Margate site and we’re looking forward to taking that same approach in Canterbury and collaborating with more of the exciting food brands already established here.”
Palms Pizzeria will be opening its doors at Floc Brewery, 7a Cotton Rd, Wincheap Industrial Estate in Canterbury in time for the May bank holiday weekend.
The businesses already work together with Palms Pizzeria serving up Floc’s beers at the Margate site. In Ma=rgate the venue can seat around 40-50 people both inside and out. The Tap Room can accommodate some 150 people so will also be an expansion in terms of floor space and foot fall.
Stuart said: “Last year more than 1 in 20 businesses in our industry said they plan to cut trading by at least two days per week to reduce energy costs, so we know we’ll have to work hard. But the feedback we’ve had in Margate and the friends we’ve made since opening our doors has inspired us to keep going.
“In Canterbury we will be going into the Tap Room and we already have a great relationship with Floc, selling a lot of their beers, and we think it will be a good launch pad for Canterbury.”
The team’s ambition is to expand Palms across the South East this year and Stuart and Josh also plan to open a site in Ramsgate this summer.
The location cannot yet be revealed as negotiations are still taking place but Stuart says it is “a really good space in the town centre.”
To celebrate the Canterbury opening, the team is offering the first 500 slices of pizza at £1 a slice.
For more information head to palmspizzeria.com.
Fantastic! Can’t wait til you open in Ramsgate. Pizza Express sorely missed, we need a great pizza place again
and we are always being lectured about drinking and eating junk food ?
Who can be bothered to lecture someone like you?
The whole world seems to be against you. St John’s boy?
Bet u r sat at home eating health foods.
Steak and Kidney pie from the garage, don’t even bother heat it up. Loser.
mate, seriously now. Its about time you got a proper hobby and some “real world” friends who will hold you and your internalised self hatred to account.
Good luck.Good idea and cant wait for Ramsgate to open
Looking forward to the Ramsgate one opening!