Melbourne restaurateur Kevin Donovan dies in his sleep
Renowned Melbourne restaurateur Kevin Donovan has died aged 68.
Donovan, co-founder of St Kilda’s popular Donovans restaurant, died peacefully in his sleep on Tuesday, leaving behind his wife, Gail.
“Gail had cooked him a wonderful dinner,” said Nick Parkhouse, the restaurant’s new owner.
“His last meal was sharing something amazing with Gail, which was a wonderful farewell for him.”
Donovan battled an undiagnosed illness for the past five years and suffered aneurysms, Parkinson’s-like symptoms and reduced lung function.
American-born restaurateur Kevin Donovan (pictured with his wife Gail) died in his sleep on Tuesday.
The Melbourne couple owned the popular Donovans restaurant (above) in St Kilda for 26 years.
The Donovan couple opened their restaurant in 1997 and it has become one of Melbourne’s most popular restaurants.
However, after serving over 1.5 million customers for 26 years, they sold the Donovans on August 31.
“Kev has been ill for five years and has not been able to work in the restaurant for at least three years,” Ms Donovan said. Good food at the time.
“It’s time for me to stay home, not to take care of Kev because I don’t intend to do that, but because we want to have time to have more fun.”
She also revealed the couple met in 1986 when Mr Donovan left America to run catering services at the Grand Hyatt hotel.
Mr. Donovan had interviewed Mrs. Donovan for a job.
“I went home and told my roommate, ‘I’m going to marry this guy.’ I thought he was wonderful,” Ms. Donovan said.
The Donovans sold their restaurant to Nick Parkhouse (centre) in August after Mr Donovan’s health deteriorated and he was unable to work.
In an interview given in 2018 to Herald SunMr Donovan explained why he had avoided retirement for so long.
‘What would I do? I can’t play golf every day and I hate gardening,” he said.
“It’s like that old adage: Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.
“This is what I love, I’m literally living my dream right now.”