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After months of expectation the former Prospero’s bookshop in The Broadway has finally been transformed into Riley ice cream parlour.
The business is named after owner Will Riley - who along with partner Shaun Wilson announced his plans for an Italian-inspired cafe selling authentic ice cream in March.
Glorious sunshine ensured a flurry of interest from curious customers today.
Mr Riley, an ex-banker who lives in Islington, said: “We opened at 12noon and it’s been very, very busy. It’s been unbelievable.
“We open just for ice cream until Monday (June 6) and then it’s full service.”
Prospero’s Books closed on Christmas Eve last year after more than a decade in Crouch End when owner Ivan Beal announced his retirement.
A coffee-shop and two bookshops were also in negotiations for the lease but the ice cream parlour won out.
It will sell home-made ice cream and the proprietors hope to echo the popularity of long-standing ice cream restaurant Marine Ices in Chalk Farm, Camden.
Mr Riley told the Journal in March: “The concept is to provide quality ice cream, food, coffees and teas, like you would get in Soho.”
A whole variety of ice cream flavours will be made freshly on the premises.
According to a twelve year old of my acquaintance, the ice cream is very nice, handmade, apparently, but a bit steep at two quid for a smallish looking cone. If they are making the stuff on the premises they will definitely have to apply for change of use.
Went in again today and had a coffee ice cream - very very good.
The interior is a bit odd though, I can only hope that it's just not finished because if I'm paying that much for ice-cream, I'd like to eat it in a little bit of luxury. Not bare bulbs, bare walls, grotty old pub chairs and unfinished wood tables...
Also, I would like to eat out of a proper bowl/glass and use a real spoon, not out of a paper carton with a plastic spatula...so hoity toity, I know!