A NEW café has opened in a popular park.

Laz in the Park is the latest addition to Saunders Park in Brighton, which has benefitted from some £150,000 investment over the past year.

Run by Max Calesini, the café, which includes an outside seating area and new public toilets, serves coffee, snacks, ice cream and home-made food, including vegan and gluten free options.

“This has been a fantastic year during which we have met so many wonderful people who have welcomed us,” said Max, who started his business online before taking over the café.

The Argus:

“Saunders Park is the crossroads of numerous communities that meet and intertwine.

“It’s wonderful to observe and interact from behind the coffee counter.

“Children love to eat in the park or under our gazebos and we are becoming famous for our lasagne.

“Here at Saunders Park, every season offers opportunities for all age groups and we look forward to welcoming everyone.”

One of the first visitors was Councillor Jamie Lloyd, deputy chairman of the city council’s environment, transport and sustainability committee, who said: “Saunders Park’s brand new café is one of the most obvious – not to mention delicious – signs of a major investment and upgrade programme undertaken by the council over the last year, and I was pleased to meet and hear more about future plans from the new tenant Max and his partner.

“This often-overlooked but much valued community park now offers a well-equipped, attractive outdoor space for all to enjoy and benefit from. As the park’s bright new signage says, Saunders Park really is ‘more than you thought’.”

The park, off Lewes Road and Hollingdean Road, has had other improvements including the children’s playground with its toddler area, and offers football and basketball facilities on a colourful artwork-designed surface.

It also has paddling pool, currently closed due to Covid 19, and a wildlife area and is home to the Brighton and Hove Food Partnership community garden and composting project – a joint initiative with Brighton and Hove City Council.

Find out more about Saunders Park at https://new.brighton-hove.gov.uk/libraries-leisure-and-arts/parks-and-countryside/saunders-park