Courtyard Restaurant calls it quits after more than 40 years in the ByWard Market

The Courtyard Restaurant is closing after over 40 years (Courtyard Restaurant/Facebook)

The historic Courtyard Restaurant in the ByWard Market has announced it will be serving supper for the last time tonight. 

The restaurant made the announcement on Instagram, stating that it is “closing indefinitely” following its final dinner service on Feb. 27, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. 

“It has been a pleasure being of service to all of you throughout the years,” the post said. “To our loyal guests, thank you for your years of support.”

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The iconic restaurant, which specializes in French-inspired cuisine with a modern twist, has operated in the ByWard Market area for more than 40 years. 

According to the restaurant’s website, the 21 George St. building was first constructed as a log tavern for Bytown workers in 1827. In the late 1800s, it was refurbished as a hotel. It then served as headquarters of the Geological Survey of Canada, then later a branch of the Mines department until partway through the Second World War. 

The building sat empty for decades, and the National Capital Commission decided to breathe new life into it in 1978. The Courtyard Restaurant opened in 1980. 

Since its opening, the Courtyard Restaurant has become a destination for tourists, and a leading venue for weddings and other events. 

“Thank you Ottawa, for over 40 years of patronage,” the restaurant said in its farewell post. “It has been a pleasure to serve you.”

The pandemic brought challenging times for restaurants across Canada. Industry experts have raised concerns about the rising costs of food, rent, utilities, insurance and labour. And as customers pinch pennies, dining out is often one of the first things to go, experts agree. 

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