Renowned Australian chef announces she is closing restaurants

Carla Mascarenhas
May 20 2024 - 11:12am

One of Australia's most famous chefs is set to retire.

Kylie Kwong delivered the news to her 100,000 followers on social media that her Australian-Cantonese eatery on the fringe of Sydney's CBD, Lucky Kwong, will shut at the end of June.

Kylie Kywong outside her famed restaurant Lucky Kwong. Picture: Instagram / Kyliw Kwong
Kylie Kywong outside her famed restaurant Lucky Kwong. Picture: Instagram / Kyliw Kwong

"At the end of June I am hanging up my restaurateur hat," she wrote.

"I'd like to step into the next phase of my practice, a continuation of my lifelong passion for food, art, culture and connection.

"Through the lens of food and interconnectedness, I wish to place all my energy, focus and time, into helping share and amplify other people's stories, particularly the important voices of First Nations people, and our multicultural communities, who make Australia the rich and diverse country that it is today."

She said she felt "clarity, excitement and strength" about this new chapter.

The post generated an outpouring of emotion.

British chef Nigella Lawson wrote she felt a "pang knowing that the next time I come to Sydney there won't be your restaurant to make a beeline for, but I'm so happy for you to have the time to do what's right for you".

"Thank you for all those years, and for your delicious and soulful genius!"

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Sydney chef Martin Boetz urged her to "enjoy the process". "New chapters are full of possibilities," he said.

Popular restaurateur Matt Moran wrote Ms Kwong was "one of a kind", before describing her as a "very special human that stands for everything good in life".

Ms Kwong did an apprenticeship with the famed chef Neil Perry in the 1990s before becoming a leading Australian chef through her TV cooking programs and cookbooks.

In 2000 she opened her own restaurant named Billy Kwong, first based in Sydney's Surry Hills, which then moved to Potts Points.

While it closed in 2019, in 2021 she opened Lucky Kwong in South Eveleigh.

Carla Mascarenhas

Carla Mascarenhas is the NSW correspondent covering breaking news, state politics and investigations. She is based in Sydney. Contact her on