New Woodbridge quayside cafe
- Credit: Jade Phair
Family-owned Suffolk business Coffeelink has grown further with the opening of another cafe, close to the River Deben in the Whisstocks quayside development,
Woodbridge is the 21st location for the business, which was launched by husband and wife team Azzouz and Rebecca El-Mahraoui at Neptune Marina in 2005.
Azzouz El-Mahraoui said: “We are thrilled to be here. We love the area.
“It is a lovely location and we have had a great welcome. We hope it will get better and better.
“People are still finding us here.
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“We will only be closed on Christmas day, and opening on Boxing Day for those walking by the river.”
It has been another successful year for the business which now employs around 100 staff, with further plans
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In October there was a family celebration when Ipswich-based Coffeelink collected the Business of the Year (Catering) Award at the finals night of the Suffolk BME Business Awards, held at the University of Suffolk.
Mr El-Mahraoui said: “We are really pleased and proud to have achieved this. It is about hard work, keeping the dream and trying hard to maintain standards.
“We are really grateful for people who find our cafe, like it and keep coming back.”
Married couple Azzouz and Rebecca El-Mahraoui met while working in London and opened their first cafe in 2005 at Ipswich Waterfront, returning to Rebecca’s home county.
Since then the business has grown to 21 outlets across the region, many of them in railway stations.
Coffeelink was one of the first of the new wave of leisure businesses by the wet dock.
In Ipswich they also roast their own coffee sourced from a range of sustainable producers.
When they received the BME award they were joined by his brother Hakim, who works with them in the business, and their children Adam, Elias and Zara.
Mrs El-Mahraoui added: “My brother-in-law is a massive part of our success. We couldn’t do it without him.
“We built the business on good service and great coffee and realistic prices.
“We are not the most expensive.”