FIFTEEN restaurant workers face losing their jobs after it was revealed a long-standing Summertown Italian eaterie and neighbouring yoga studio are set to close in favour of redevelopment.

Cibo has been in South Parade for 15 years, but owner Antony Di Pinto said it would shut its doors – along with the Yoga Garden behind – by the end of the month.

Mr Di Pinto said the site’s Panama-registered landlord would not be renewing the lease, citing redevelopment to include post-graduate accommodation above. He is finding it difficult to secure alternative premises.

He said: “The value of property in Summertown has sky-rocketed and with a plot that size as underdeveloped as it is, I might have done the same thing if I was landlord.

“We are looking for a new location, but we’re in a market that is extremely difficult to find somewhere that’s a good size and at a good rent.

“It’s not great. I am having to make all my staff redundant.

“We will keep looking for somewhere, but we are having to close down.”

The restaurant owner also advertises and promotes the yoga studio, while a number of different teachers run the sessions.

Mr Di Pinto added: “It’s a sad loss and it will cause a lot of problems for the many yoga teachers who use the space.”

Mariella De Martini has run sessions at Yoga Garden since it was first set up in 2002.

She said the studio had reduced in size since to accommodate Cibo.

She said: “I’m sad it’s going to close down. I have been taking classes there for many years and I saw the potential in it to begin with.

“It used to be three times as big as it is now with changing rooms, a plunge pool and a sauna and I had 50 to every session.”

The teacher, who also takes classes at East Oxford Community Centre as well as for various university colleges, said she was hopeful of moving her Monday night drop-in session to the University Club in Mansfield Road.

The Oxford Mail was unable to contact the landlord, Kensington Properties SA