A £5m project to transform the neglected Grand Parade and Undercroft into an exclusive dining area for the city is now a step closer.
Bath and North East Somerset Council is now looking for approaches from restaurants interested in the new facility.
The restaurants will be situated below the Grand Parade and will have al fresco dining overlooking Pulteney Bridge and the weir.
A planning application is expected to be submitted in April.
Leader of the council, Councillor Paul Crossley, said: “There are exciting possibilities for businesses who want a breathtaking and unique location for their restaurant.”
Fleurets – the leisure property specialists – have been appointed to act on behalf of the council to attract restaurant tenants.
Kevin Conibear, from its Bristol office, said: “The Colonnades is unique and will offer riverside dining within the heart of the city. The image of Pulteney Bridge and the Colonnades defines Bath and is one of the most recognisable aspects of the city. This really is a great opportunity for restaurateurs to acquire trophy sites.”
Colleague Stuart Parsons added: “Our aspirations are to attract the quality or high-end restaurateur. Certainly we feel the location is suited to that type of use. It will have a unique location looking over the river and canals.
“I am a little reluctant to use the words ‘celebrity chef’ but we would like to see that type of restaurant in it.”
Meanwhile, some of the biggest names in business – including ‘The Apprentice’s’ Karren Brady – will be speaking at a free showcase due to take place at Colston Hall on April 8.
The Business Showcase South West 2014 is designed to celebrate innovation, business, creativity and sustainability in the region.