Penalty rates, high rents and the cost of parking are putting increasing pressure on Brisbane’s inner city restaurants.

One upmarket restaurant, “One Eleven”, has shut down after only fourteen months in operation.

Emma Clarke reports.


Some restaurant owners say they’re struggling to survive.

They say the cost of staff penalty rates, skyrocketing rents and high parking costs for customers in Brisbane’s central business district, are putting pressure on all small businesses.

Gillian Hirst, Gillian’s Garden Cafe: “It’s probably the toughest I’ve seen it in my thirty years. The pressures on keeping the doors open are very, very strong.”

Ms Hirst also says copyright laws means she would have to pay around $2,000 a year to play music in her restaurant. Her response was to buy a canary to entertain the customers.

Restaurant owners are also facing steadily increasing rents, with some paying more than $10,000 a month.

Crippling federal and state government taxes are being blamed for the recent closure of multiple Brisbane restaurants.

European cities including London, Milan and Paris are becoming cheaper to dine in than Brisbane because of this increase in overheads.

The restaurant owners say if the spiralling costs continue, restaurant service will suffer and it could lead to a simplified style of food retailling to cut labor costs.

Emma Clarke QUT News.