People celebrating



12th July 2023

Leeds is home to a variety of exceptional dining experiences, that’s why it’s the unofficial foodie capital of the North. With graduation on the horizon, it reminds us of those special occasions where friends and family join to celebrate together. Whether that be for a university reunion, a hen-party, an anniversary, or birthday, you may be searching for that perfect venue to make life-long memories.

With independent venues and big-name favourites dotted around the city, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to celebrating in style in Leeds. We have pulled together our list of top restaurant and venue picks for special occasions. The only question is, which will you choose?

Grand Pacific

Located as part of the esteemed Queens Hotel, the decadent oasis of Grand Pacific is a perfect venue for your special occasion celebration. Luxury 1920s-inspired interiors make an opulent backdrop for your party, with mirrored walls, romantic lighting and a grand ballroom to make you feel like the belle (or beau) of the ball!

They are welcoming all graduates with a FREE small bottle of sparkling wine or a FREE full-size bottle of Veuve Clicquot NV Champagne for parties larger than 6!

Offering innovative cocktails and delicious bites to eat fusing worldwide flavours with British classics, your guests will be wowed by the incredible food and drink on offer here. If you are looking for a larger gathering, treat up to 25 with private dining, or hire intimate booths for up to 20. After you’ve stormed up a party at the Grand Pacific, you and your party could take a lift to a room there at the Queen’s Hotel for a perfect end to your evening.

Blackhouse – Grill on the Square

For steak lovers, there’s no better place to celebrate than Blackhouse Restaurant on swanky East Parade. Serving up delicious steaks alongside grilled fishes, meats and vegetarian options, with a range of tasty sides and delicious wines and cocktails, you’ll feast like kings and queens. And in an intimate, stylish setting, Blackhouse is the perfect place to toast your special occasion with loved ones.

Con-GRAD-ulations offer at the Blackhouse will spoil you with a complimentary bottle of Moët & Chandon with your celebratory meal!

Want to really graduate with a bang? Private dining options are perfect for the summer season with two outdoor dining areas – including an all year round conservatory looking out onto Bond Square, where private dining is available for up to 44 people. It’s retractable roof is ideal for that al-fresco dining experience in the sunshine.


Fancy a fiesta? Spanish tapas restaurant Iberica is a fantastic choice for that special celebration. Located in a former antique house, Iberica is rich in character and history, offering an intimate, modern and cosy venue space. Iberica prides itself on serving the finest produce and a unique spin on classic dishes, all curated by Executive Chef Nacho Manzano.

Iberica are treating ALL graduate parties to a FREE sparkling cava reception to make your dining experience this extra special for your graduation.

If you are looking to entertain a larger party, there are endless exclusive hire and private dining options available. The Hepper Room seats between 15 and 26 guests or La Bodega can host between 15-37 of your friends and family. For slightly bigger celebrations, you can dine in the main restaurant, for between 65-100 of your closest allies.

Lost and Found

A popular Victorian-style hideaway, Lost and Found has two locations in Leeds; one near the main shopping district on Albion Street and one on party favourite Greek Street. With instagrammable decors and classic British dishes, delicious cocktails, wines and beers, this is the perfect venue to celebrate that special occasion. There’s options for private, semi-private and exclusive use, so no matter your party size, Lost and Found has you covered.

Lost and found are giving graduates extra special treatment to enhance their celebrations with a complimentary glass of prosecco or a select choice of beer options. If you happen to be celebrating your graduation on a Monday, you can apply their 50% off the le carte menu too! Double up on your deals to get the most out of your graduation celebrations.

Have your whole crew celebrating a graduation with you? At Albion Street, private dining is available for up to 100 people, with semi-private dining available in the cosy lounge area for up to 40 people. Exclusive use is also available for you to hire the entire venue for up to 300 people. Prefer to party on Greek Street? Private dining is available for up to 50 people, semi-private dining in the restaurant area seats up to 50, while exclusive use can host up to 400 people.

Shears Yard

A local legend, Shears Yard is a kitchen and bar that delivers a fresh and seasonal menu of creative combinations made from locally sourced ingredients. Shears Yard was built in the 1800s and originally used as a rope and canvas manufacturer, and has retained much of its industrial past in its interior today, alongside modern touches that bring the space to life. An intimate and romantic venue complete with steel beams, exposed brickwork, high ceilings and ambient lighting, Shears Yard is here to host your big celebrations of all your hard work.

Calling all graduates! Shears Yard has allocated exclusive tables for graduates as well as a glass of prosecco on arrival to kick start your celebrations.

Although private and semi-private dining is not available, you can rent the venue for exclusive use for up to 130 people in a standing capacity. And in a venue this picture-perfect, why not choose Shears Yard for your graduation celebrations?

shears yard full table of people

Fourth Floor Brasserie Harvey Nichols

On the top floor of the luxury retail paradise of Harvey Nichols lies the Fourth Floor Brasserie and Bar, one of the most luxurious venues for parties and celebrations in the city. With a stunning rooftop bar offering views across the city, and modern, high-end finishes, this is the venue for those extra special celebrations.

But it’s not just style over substance. A seasonally changing menu takes you on a culinary exploration, with each dish showcasing Yorkshire’s finest, fresh produce to its full potential. Classic and modern cocktails and a vast selection of wines and beer are also available to try.

Their three-course summer dining menu is only 30 pounds per person and includes a glass of bubbles too! Graduates are treated to some complimentary extra bubbles with half a bottle of their Harvey Nichols prosecco or a full-size bottle for parties of 6 and above.

Although private dining is not available, semi-private dining is – with intimate options for 6 to 50 people. And to really celebrate in style, exclusive use of the venue is available everyday, holding up to 250 guests.


A popular chain restaurant around the UK, chances are, you may have visited a Gusto once or twice before. And it’s popular for a reason. With picture-perfect, romantic interiors adorned with foliage and fairy lights, serving up crowd pleasing Italian favourites alongside a vast wine and drinks menu, this is one venue that’s sure to please.

Gusto invites you to experience your first drink as a graduate in their glamourous interior with a complimentary glass of fizz! Alongside this, Gusto has a new menu exclusively for this special occasion and priced at £34.95 for three courses, you won’t be disappointed.

So why not celebrate your graduation here? For more intimate celebrations, private dining is available for up to 40 guests, or go semi-private for 10-20 people, perfect for smaller celebrations. And to go all out, why not hire the venue exclusively? Holding up to 170 people, it’s a fantastic venue to impress your guests for bigger parties and extra special occasions like your graduation!

crab spaghetti dish at Gusto Restaurant

Fleur Restaurant and Bar

An instagram-approved venue filled with flower walls, neon signs and all-round good vibes, Fleur was created by award-winning MasterChef finalist and Great British Menu-famed chef Bobby Geetha, and offers delicious contemporary British cuisine spiced up with an international twist.

Their evening set dining menu is super affordable, priced at £22.95 for three courses. At this price, you can go all out on their happy-hour cocktails Sunday-Friday!

Private dining is also available here for up to 50 fun-loving guests or go semi-private for smaller occasions of up to 20. You’re sure to have a great time, and capture some Insta-worthy graduation shots, at Fleur.

Manahatta Merrion Street

Bringing a taste of New York to Leeds, Manahatta Merrion Street offers a casual, US-inspired menu of burgers, hot dogs, brunch and chicken, washed down with crafted cocktails, spirits and soft drinks.

Manahatta welcomes all graduation celebrations this season and promises to provide only the best vibes. Start your weekend celebrations off with a massive 50% off all food, all day, every Friday!

A popular hotspot on Merrion Street, take complete control of the venue and block out the crowds with exclusive use for up to 570 guests, or 240 seated. For more intimate celebrations, private dining is available for up to 20 people, or go for semi-private for up to 50. You can be sure you’ll have a blast at Manahatta if you choose to celebrate your graduation here!

Revolucion de Cuba Leeds

Be transported to Havana and enjoy a Caribbean evening by celebrating your special occasion at Revolucion de Cuba. With neon lights, summer-inspired interiors and a delicious menu of Caribbean classics and rum-based cocktails (among much more), you can salsa the night away at Revs de Cuba.

Revolucion de Cuba have various graduate packages for you to tailor your graduation celebrations to your favourites this year. Alongside a free glass of prosecco for the graduate with any food booking, a tapas and course dining package are on offer at Revolucion de Cuba. The Tapas package includes 3 exquisite Tapas dishes of your choice, 2 of their infamous cocktails and one glass of fizz or a shot of strawberry margarita for £25. The course dining package offers a classy 2 course meal alongside a medium glass of house wine. The choice of prosecco or shot of strawberry margarita is also included in this package and prices at £22. Revolucion de Cuba have really gone the extra mile to make sure your graduation celebrations are accommodated for this year!

Want to party bigger and better? Private diving options are available, allowing you to celebrate with up to 100 of your family and friends this graduation.


Located in a wonderful location close to the train station, bars and restaurants, Malmaison is one of the most popular hotels for city centre dwellers. Housed within a stunning Victorian building, Malmaison boasts over five floors and 100 rooms, with all the luxuries you’d expect from a four-star hotel.

Want to switch up your graduation celebrations to an Afternoon Tea? Malmaison is rewarding graduates with a free glass of Champagne to accompany a delicious Graduation-themed Afternoon Tea this year. Alternatively, their exclusive graduation menu also offers a complimentary glass of Champagne to celebrate your successes! With a range of room packages also on offer, you could extend your celebrations even longer and turn your graduation celebrations into a luxury experience.


Dubbed Leeds’ most luxurious hotel, Dakota Deluxe has certainly gained a reputation for their facilities – as well as their food. Serving up tasty British fanfare in a super stylish, clean and contemporary restaurant, this is one venue to consider if you’re really looking to wow your guests!

Choose luxury for your graduation celebrations this year in the Champagne room.  Dakota’s champagne room is available to hire for your graduation celebrations this year. Delve into some light bites and the finest champagne with up to 20 of your family and friends.

Dakota offers a range of exquisite hotel packages, inviting you and your party to extend your celebrations across the weekend.

As well as these incredible venues above, there’s so many more fantastic food and drink places to explore in the city that make Leeds a foodies’ paradise. Check them out, or see how you can spend 24, 48 and 73 hours in the city with our itineraries.