One of Bendigo's most popular restaurants will close its doors at the end of June.
Rocks on Rosalind director Ben Massey said the business will not renew its lease and will close after seven years of operation.
He said the decision was made six months ago but making the announcement had been emotional.
"Rocks was always going to end its lease by August. The feeling is sad in every single employee's respect. They made Rocks their home," Mr Massey said.
"I have always treated all my staff like family. The staff knew the restaurant was going to end its lease. I told them at a staff party on Australia Day."
Rocks on Rosalind opened in December, 2013. Mr Massey said there had been a lot of support from people since announcing the business would close.
"A lot said they were sad to see us go and were hoping to come back for cocktails," he said.
"The hospitality scene in Bendigo is one of best regions in Victoria. There is always healthy competition.
"I'll miss having fun with staff and the great nights with the vibe of the restaurant buzzing. We held so many different events and have done some really cool and different stuff."
Mr Massey said he was concerned that some businesses would struggle when restrictions were lifted but there would be silver linings.
"After COVID-19, everyone is expecting around a third of hospitality venues to close. Rocks is obviously one of those but it is what it is," he said.
"There is a lot silver linings for a lot of people who had time with friends and family and had time to seek new visions. It will be hard getting out on other side. To relaunch on the other side after three months (of coronavirus shutdown), we would need an astronomical amount of money.
"It's going to be very good for some and hard for others. Business grants help and are great but the expenses of businesses (who closed) for three months will never be covered. Owners will have to dig into their back pockets and will get so far behind. I'm concerned for a lot of places."
Mr Massey was planning to open a new venue in Bendigo but has put the plans on hold until the COVID-19 pandemic is over.
He said it was set to be a large restaurant with a Melbourne pub-style that also had health-food takeaway.
"Until COVID-19 hit (I was planning) to take all stock, staff and plant and equipment," Mr Massey said. "We were all set up with interior design, a logo, a name and we pulled the pin.
"It's not smart to open a large venue during COVID-19. (We will wait) a minimum of six to 12 months. It might be longer depending on what happens with my position in life.
"We (might) one open on a smaller scale and see how the takeaway side goes."
Mr Massey said he is looking forward to stepping away from hospitality for a while.
"I have been in hospitality for 25 years," he said. "Building and construction (is also) an exciting part of my life, so I'm stepping back from hospitality and do that while keeping the Gallery Cafe running as well. We're hoping to re-open that in a couple of months."