Karma for sale

Restaurant will close if not sold

The owners of Karma Restaurant and Lounge in West Shore Centre have put the popular establishment up for sale and will close it by the end September if no buyer is found. 

Matthew Wight, who owns the restaurant with his father Ian Wight, said they have decided not to renew the current five-year lease when it expires at the end of September. 

“We don’t want to sign another five-year lease,” he said. “Dad is almost 65 and I have a million and one things on my plate right now and I just can’t commit to it for the time period. Over the next couple of months, we’ll see if someone will take it on.” 

The restaurant has 22 staff members. 

The Wights first became involved in an Italian restaurant, then called Post, at the Karma location. After taking that restaurant over, they changed the name to Dolce Vita. After going separate ways with the partners in that restaurant, they opened Karma in the location in October 2010. 

Karma’s location in the northeast corner of West Shore Centre has seen many restaurant over the past 25 years. In addition to Karma, Post and Dolce Vita, the location has been home to Captain Morgan’s Steakhouse, La Bodega Latin Lounge and Grill, McCoy’s Restaurant & Lounge and Stax Restaurant & Bar. 

Mr. Wight also owns Da Fish Shack Restaurant in George Town with his father, as well as having a stake in the Papa John’s pizza franchise and in the Minus5 Ice Bar in George Town. 

Karma, which serves an eclectic mix of Asian-fusion, sushi and pub fare, was particularly popular with Grand Cayman residents because of its chic ambiance, affordable prices and nightlife entertainment later in the evening.  

An advertisement, under the heading “Exceptional Business Opportunity,” appears on page 16 of the Classified section of today’s newspaper offering the restaurant for sale, although the asking price is not quoted.  

“It is well known for its outstanding Asian cuisine and as a popular evening destination, making it a favorite amongst tourists and residents. It has a loyal customer base,” the advertisement states. 

Although Mr. Wight acknowledges that a purchaser could create an entirely new restaurant at the location, he said he is hopeful a purchaser can be found to either take the restaurant – and its name – as it is, or to buy it and just make minor modifications.  

“It has a good name and a good reputation,” he said. 

The news of Karma’s potential closing comes a little more than a week after another popular restaurant, Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink, announced it would close on Aug. 30. A family-friendly pizza and pasta restaurant will open in that restaurant’s Camana Bay location.  

Matthew Wight in front of Karma Restaurant & Lounge, which will close by September if no buyer is found. – Photo: Alan Markoff