The owners of a popular Japanese restaurant have thanked their "loyal customers" after deciding to put the business up for sale. 

Hamit Sert and Nevenov Belchinov have put Soyokaze, an authentic Japanese restaurant in St Giles Street, on the market after seven years of ownership. 

Norwich Evening News: Hamit thanked his loyal customersHamit thanked his loyal customers (Image: Danielle Booden)

The pair said they made the decision because they are keen to enjoy a "better work-life balance". 

Hamit said: "It's been a great journey and we've enjoyed it.

"And we're so appreciative to our customers.

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"But we came to a mutual decision to put it for sale because we want to enjoy our lives outside of work."

Despite this, Hamit and Nevenov are in no rush to get out, and both continue to work almost every day as chefs at the restaurant which serves dishes including sushi and ramen. 

Norwich Evening News: Hamit said the decision was mutual between the co-ownersHamit said the decision was mutual between the co-owners (Image: Danielle Booden)

"It's been on the market for a while now," said Hamit.

"We're not desperate to sell and we're still working as usual. 

"We've got a really good relationship with our landlord and the rent is relatively cheap compared to other areas of the city."

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The leasehold of Soyokaze has been listed with RightBiz for £85,000, with an annual rent of £19,000, stating the business had a turnover of £406,000 in 2022. The 10-year lease at its St Giles Street location started in April 2022.

Looking forward, Hamit said he doesn't have any particular plans - but he has considered using his degree in chemistry to enter a new sector. 

Norwich Evening News: The restaurant is hugely popular with folk from Norwich and beyondThe restaurant is hugely popular with folk from Norwich and beyond (Image: Danielle Booden)

"I've lived in Norwich for 13 years," he added. 

"I don't know if I'll stay here or go somewhere else. 

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"I studied chemistry at university and I'm considering going into a new industry.

"But we'll see. We don't know yet when we might and we're not desperate to sell. 

"In the meantime, we remain open as usual and will continue to serve our loyal customers."