A new Mediterranean restaurant and bar is set to bring some much-needed southern European sunshine to Marylebone next month.

Taking over the former site of Italian restaurant Il Baretto, Bellazul is a "laid-back" neighbourhood eatery inspired by the region's tranquil way of life, and designed to transport diners to the sun-kissed shores of the Med.

Head Chef Simone Serafini, previously helmed the kitchen at Cecconi’s, Cacciari’s and Mayfair’s private members club 5 Hertford Street. He has created a seasonally-changing menu that takes in the rolling hills and rich flavours of Italy, the shores of Greece and its islands, and the warm spices of Morocco.

Ham & High: The menu ranges from Italy to Greece and MoroccoThe menu ranges from Italy to Greece and Morocco (Image: Bellazul)

Sharing plates will include lamb tagine and lobster spaghetti, while lighter dishes include a grilled salmon salad served with quail eggs and green beans.

The drinks menu features a curated wine list that reflects the biodiversity of the Mediterranean, with bottles from Portugal, France and Italy among other lesser known regions.

The unusual cocktail list includes the Bellazul Martini with focaccia infused gin, basil and tomato water, burnt garlic and homemade curacao syrup, and the Retro@43 with bourbon, clarified milk punch, smoked vanilla syrup and orange bitters.Ham & High: A selection of dishes from BellazulA selection of dishes from Bellazul (Image: Bellazul)

The interiors have been designed to reflect the Mediterranean, with large arched windows framing the entrance and flooding the room with natural light.

The front bar, Azul, is an intimate spot for guests to stop enjoy a drink before dinner with a selection of smaller, sharing plates. They the descend the staircase to a dining room decorated in rustic, earth tones.

Simone said: “Bellazul was born from a desire to create the perfect neighbourhood spot in Marylebone, whether that’s gathering with friends and colleagues after work or a lazy weekend meal with loved ones. We wanted to create somewhere that brings people together over delicious food and ensure every visit is memorable and unique!”

Bellazul opens on Feb 1 at 43 Blandford Street, Marylebone.