Hanuman opened its Adelaide restaurant on the ground floor of the Chifley Hotel on South Terrace in January 2014, and had become known for its high-quality Indian, Thai and Nonya cuisine.
Before launching in Adelaide, owner Jimmy Shu already operated two successful restaurants under the same name – in Alice Springs and Darwin.
Shu was unavailable this morning to comment, but the closure of Hanuman Adelaide was announced on the restaurant’s Facebook page on Friday with the post:
“It is with great sadness to announce that Hanuman Adelaide will close its doors after Saturday, 27 August. We would like to thank our dedicated staff, loyal customers, our suppliers and friends for their unwavering support and loyalty.”
Georgina Williams, marketing director for the Silver Needle Hospitality Group which owns the Chifley Hotel, said the reason for Hanuman’s closure was a “trifecta of predictions”.
“It was a reflection of Adelaide’s economic climate, consumer confidence with a change in taste, and also how very competitive Adelaide dining is now with its increase in small-venue licenses.”
Shu, who was closely involved in the establishment of the South Terrace restaurant, told InDaily in 2014 that one of the reasons for choosing Adelaide was the intangible but powerful connection between the city and the Northern Territory.
“There is this amazing connection between Adelaide, Alice Springs and Darwin,” he said at the time. “I’m still trying to figure it out.
“For six years, people have been telling me this: ‘Why don’t you open in Adelaide?’ This thing keeps coming about Adelaide, Adelaide – and I’ve got a lot of my produce coming from here.”
There was some scepticism about the restaurant’s “quiet” location. However, Hanuman Adelaide developed a strong following of customers who not only enjoyed the food, but also Shu’s modest and friendly approach. Its popularity was recognised with three successive awards – Best Asian Restaurant 2014, 2015 and 2016 – in the Savour Australia Hostplus Awards for Excellence.
Shu is well known for his previous restaurants in Melbourne (Monsoon, Shakahari and Isthmus of Kra), Queensland and Malaysia.
“It is with a heavy heart that we witness the closure of Hanuman Restaurant after two-and-a-half years,” Williams said.
“The closure was a decision made by the management team at Hanuman.
“We are now investigating other options. With the hotel’s proximity to the park, Pulteney Grammar School and other hotels in the group, it would be remiss of us not to look at a more casual-style alternative.”
The Hanuman Facebook page states that the Hanuman Alice Springs and Darwin restaurants will continue.
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