A JAPANESE restaurant "like no other in Southampton" has chosen the coastal city as the first place in the world to showcase their food.

Zento, a new Japanese restaurant selling the likes of sushi, noodles and meat, will open its doors this May at the junction of The Strand near to Debenhams, in the city centre.

The retail unit, which covers 913 square feet of ground, plus another floor of 386 square feet, has been let to the restaurant on a 15-year term for £25,000 a year.

It is set to be situated near city retailers and restaurants such as Bella Italia, British Heart Foundation and Laura Ashley.

George Lim, from Zento, said: "We would like to inform the community that we have a team of very successful Japanese chefs who will provide delicate, delicious and top grade Japanese dishes at affordable prices.

"Zento Japanese restaurant will be like no other Japanese restaurant in Southampton. We are scheduled to open in late May 2020."

The restaurant plans to employ top chefs ahead of its opening later this year.

Hampshire-based estate agents Goadsby let the Hanover Buildings unit to the eatery, which will open its first official restaurant in Southampton.

Michael Lord of Goadsby said: "We were pleased to secure this new letting to Zento, a Japanese restaurant who will now begin their extensive fit out. This location suits this type of use extremely well with the neighbouring restaurateurs.

"After a successful viewing we were able to move forward and agree favourable terms for our client enabling the planning application to be lodged and the short wait began.

"With impressive fit out plans and a desire to employ highly regarded chefs and staff we expect the tenant to make every success."

Nicol Ruchti, asset manager at commercial property and investment company LCP, which Goadsby work on behalf of, said: “It’s good news that our agent has secured a restaurateur for this busy retail area in the city centre. We’re looking forward to welcoming Zento.”