The Indian Coffee House (ICH) at Chalakudy in Thrissur district downed shutters on Wednesday after nearly two decades. A local favourite, the ICH offered good food to local people as well as visitors to Chalakudy town all these years. The ICH also attracted several long-distance travellers passing through Chalakudy, thanks to its prime location beside the National Highway 544.
ICH functioned in a rented building on the premises of the Municipal Office premises. After it decided to build an annex in the area where the ICH was located, the Municipality did not renew the rent agreement with the restaurant. The agreement came to an end on Wednesday.
It was 19 years ago – in 2003 – that the ICH restaurant was opened at the building owned by Chalakudy Municipality. Till then, a Municipality canteen operated by private individuals functioned at the place.
The Municipality had rented out the building to ICH for a monthly amount of Rs 10,000. As the rent was low, councillors of the municipality were served some items at a discounted rate by the ICH. While tea and coffee were priced Rs 2 less, meals were served for Rs 30. However, there was no discount on other food items.
Even though the ICH which was located at a prime area in Chalakudy has shut shop, its authorities are yet to identify a suitable spot to shift the restaurant. “Rents demanded for similar locations are huge. There are also other hurdles to overcome for ICH to start functioning in Chalakudy town again,” said an official attached to the coffee house.
Presently, Chalakudy ICH has a staff strength of 22.