Despite now being able to drink and dine indoors, many people still prefer to catch up with friends al fresco.
It’s meant that many city businesses have been creative with their outdoor spaces, from converted car parks to pavement seating. Here’s some of the new al fresco hot spots to try out in Sunderland.
1. The Sweet Petite, Mackie's Corner
The Sweet Petite has a great people watching spot at the front of its cake shop at Mackie's Corner. There's two tables which serve up to six people and a third table that seats two. Indulge in their excellent range of cakes, home-made fudges, chocolates, cake jars, brownies, cheesecakes, brittles and more. You can also enjoy their afternoon teas al fresco when the weather's nice. Photo: submitted
2. Street Bar, Low Row
Following a £250,000 refurbishment, the former Revolution site has been opened as Street Bar by its new owners. Theatre Leisure, who also run The Rabbit, have created a world sports bar in the downstairs floor of the building which screens sports from across the globe - including the Euros. As part of the transformation of the bar, they've created an outdoor seating area which also has screens for those who prefer to watch the matches outdoors. Photo: JPI Media
3. San Marino at Hanover Place, Deptford
San Marino has closed at its original site in Chester Road and reopened at sister venue Hanover Place in Deptford with the same San Marino menu, chefs and staff. The owners have also opened a new and improved outdoor area for people to enjoy some al fresco dining or just a drink in the sunshine. Four-legged friends are also welcome. Photo: JPI Media
4. Bennelli's, Museum & Winter Gardens
Italian cafe and coffee shop Bennelli's has opened in the former Holmeside Coffee in the Winter Gardens. It's very family friendly and offers panini, gelato, hot specials and more. The terrace is also a great spot for a Moretti or Limoncello Spritz. Photo: JPI Media