Turkish restaurant Cappadocia opens next to Ashford International Station


A new Turkish restaurant with jazz bar and snack van welcomes its first customers next to Ashford International Station.

Cappadocia, which is just off the ring road, opened at Station Road at noon.

Cappadocia opened at 12pm today

Named after the region of Turkey famous for its scenic hot air balloon rides, the venue – more recently known as Otto Bar and Shisha Lounge – promises to serve up traditional cultural cuisine.

Owner Serkan Gungor, who has been in the restaurant business for 20 years, says he is “really delighted” to open the restaurant to the public.

“I’ve been running around like crazy getting everything ready, but we’re almost there and I can’t wait,” he said.
“It’s quite intimidating but also very exhilarating!”

Catering will be served in the center of the building as well as on the terrace, which can accommodate around 100 people.

Meals will be served in the restaurant and on the terrace
Meals will be served in the restaurant and on the terrace

The building will also house a jazz bar – which Mr Gungor says will be the first of its kind in the city.

The van outside – which sits near the entrance to Cameo nightclub – briefly opened as a kebab van, but will now be given a new lease of life.

“I only opened it for about two days; the timings just didn’t work,” Gungor said.

“Because the nearby club is only open three days a week, that’s when the van would have been open, but nobody would only work three days a week, and I can’t handle it myself. -same.

“I have now decided to reopen it as a snack bar – there are businesses and offices all around it, so it will serve tea, coffee, snacks and more from 8am to 2pm.”

The short-lived kebab van will now serve burgers, jacket potatoes, and other items
The short-lived kebab van will now serve burgers, jacket potatoes, and other items

The site next to Papa John’s has been occupied by The Kent Arms for over 50 years.

Greene King took over and renamed it Fat Fiddler in the early 1990s.

In 2011 it was later converted into Ashford Business Center and a wine bar called Platform 5.

The Breeze Bar then took over but moved in 2017 after spending less than a year in the building.

A view from the Station Road Bridge towards the Kent Arms in 1961. Photo: Steve Salter
A view from the Station Road Bridge towards the Kent Arms in 1961. Photo: Steve Salter
Platform 5 in 2011
Platform 5 in 2011

It was then vacant until 2019 when Mr. Gungor and his brother opened Otto Bar and Shisha Lounge.

However, the couple decided to redesign the business after issues with Ashford Borough Council over outdoor space.

Mr Gungor, 37, and his family previously worked in restaurants in Tunbridge Wells, Gillingham and in south-east London where he lived before moving to Ashford.

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