A POPULAR restaurant in Edinburgh has closed after almost 40 years in the business.

Mexican restaurant Viva Mexico opened in Scotland’s capital in 1984 and has since served thousands of hungry residents and tourists from its base on Edinburgh's historic Cockburn Street in the city’s Old Town.

Now, it has announced it will be closing its doors, saying in a statement on Facebook on Saturday that “it’s time to turn off the grill and put down the cocktail shaker”.

The restaurant didn’t offer an explanation for the closure but did mention “all that has been thrown at us through the years” whilst thanking its loyal customers.

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The statement added: “This is not how we would have liked to have finished up. Ideally, we’d have had more time to wish everyone a farewell properly, but this was not to be. Love to you all. It has been an absolute pleasure. You’ll be forever in our memories and we hope you will remember us fondly.”

The restaurant was previously put up for sale in May last year, according to the Scotsman.

It was listed as offers over £950,000.

Property agents, McEwan Fraser Legal, said at the time: “Viva Mexico provides a fantastic opportunity to purchase an already well established and highly regarded licenced restaurant situated in one of Edinburgh's most popular tourist areas.”