CORPUS CHRISTI (Kiii News) — A popular family owned restaurant on North Padre Island that was forced to close its doors due to Hurricane Harvey is almost ready to reopen.
Island Italian owner Tony Tagliaferro said it shouldn't be much longer before they're back in business.
Tagliaferro said he still gets emotional when he walks inside.
"I don't know how. I really don't. Somebody up above was watching out because every time I thought it was getting bad, it got good," Tagliaferro said.
After Harvey, the roof of Island Italian was left caved in, and there was water all over the restaurant. Now it has a shiny new look.
"We miss it. There's no place that's this good," customer Charlotte Hearn said.
At times, Tagliaferro doubted the day would ever come that they could reopen their doors.
"It's just hard because you see everybody else around you going back to life as normal, and life as normal is not normal for you anymore," Tagliaferro said.
He said walking through the door after Hurricane Harvey was one of the hardest days of his life.
"This is our livelihood. This is a livelihood for not only me and my family but other families as well, and you know, you just don't have the answers," Tagliaferro said.
After hard work and countless repairs, you can almost smell the pasta sauce. Customers have already started to show up, anxious to get inside.
"If it's just going to be two more weeks than I'm excited," Hearn said.
The restaurant is still in the hiring process but is expected to be open for business by the end of October.
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