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Jax Daily Record Monday, Aug. 24, 202010:00 AM EST

The Magnificat Cafe to close permanently

The Downtown restaurant has been open since 2003.
by: Katie Garwood Staff Writer

After 17 years in business Downtown, The Magnificat Cafe will close permanently Aug. 28. 

Owners Kathy and Benoit Desclefs announced the closure Aug. 24 on the restaurant’s Facebook page. 

“The pandemic and our health made it increasingly difficult to continue any further,” the post read. “We gave it out best try.”

The Facebook post announcing the restaurant's closure.

According to Daily Record news partner News4Jax, Kathy and Benoit Desclefs and their 17-year-old son, Luke, all were diagnosed with cancer in December. 

They initially planned to close their restaurant in January, but with help from online donations and media coverage that increased traffic in the restaurant, they continued operating.

As of Aug. 24, The Desclefs Family Cancer Fund on had $73,835. 

Benoit, Luke and Kathy Desclefs all were diagnosed with cancer in December. (News4Jax)

The restaurant leases space at 231 N. Laura St. The French-American lunch restaurant serves quiche, sandwiches, salads, wraps, burgers and soups. The restaurant opened in September 2003. 

Its dining room is closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the patio has seating available. 

“We will not forget all the love and support from this great community,” the Facebook post read. “We had the best customers in all of Jacksonville and it has been nothing but a pleasure to serve you over all these years. We are not sure what we will do next. But know that we will not forget you. THANK YOU for a great 17 years!”

It is not the only Downtown restaurant to close during the pandemic. The 10/Six Grille inside the Seminole Building closed at the end of April, citing a lack of business.

Benoit and Kathy Desclefs posted this photo on Facebook with the news of their restaurant's closure.


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