For four weeks Livio Ferigo and his support team of friends and family worked night and day to create Café Amici.
Walls were knocked down, flooring was ripped up and the ceiling was completely re-done to give the Italian eatery a fresh and new look.
The first crew of workers often started work as early as 8am and worked through until 6pm.
And in the evening they would be replaced by Mr. Ferigo, his family and friends who would descend on Dockyard to continue the renovation work until the early hours of the next morning.
It was an around the clock operation where everyone pulled together.
There was also help from abroad.
Marble and granite blocks were flown in from a friend in Canada to give Café Amici a clean and crisp feel.
Mr. Ferigo even brought in paintings of his hometown, Forni di Sopra in Italy, to decorate the freshly painted walls.
He said: “It was very much a team effort for the four weeks we were working..
“Everyone helped out and I think they did a great job.
“We were working seven days a week and quite often well into the early hours of the morning.
“I got a lot of help from all sorts of people — my brother-in-law Corriea gave up a lot of his time and did the tiling and the electrics. Andrew Petty and my friend Corry were responsible for doing all internal décor. I owe those guys a big ‘thank-you’ because they did an amazing job.”
A lot of the work to transform Café Amici into the friendly eatery that now attracts hundreds of customers every week was done by Mr. Ferigo himself and his close family.
That could be why the place has a traditional family feeling to it when you walk in the door. He said: “It was also very much a family affair as my wife Cidalia chose all the internal décor.
“She and her sister-in-law did the upholstery and chose the café’s motto: ‘where friends and family get together’. She also did the menus and the design of the menus was done by our friend Anna Terceira.”
Mr. Ferigo took over the old restaurant that is now Café Amici in February of this year.
The premises was closed to the public for most of March while the renovation work was done.
And Café Amici was officially opened to the public for the first time at the end of March.
Mr. Ferigo added: “I took the restaurant over from my friend Bruno.
“He was there for many years and approached me about taking it over.
“I wanted to put my own mark on it and make it more of a restaurant but with the same cosy kind of atmosphere.
“But we also wanted to keep the breakfast theme going because it was very popular with the tourists and the locals.
“The marble tiles and granite bars give the café a simple and crisp feel.
“I hope we have given the place an authentically Italian feel with a twist of Bermuda.
“There are paintings of my home town and the church where my wife and I got married.
“They are blended in with beach paintings from Bermuda and water scenes to create what I hope is nice mix of cultures.
“I just want to thank everyone who helped us get this project off the ground from the staff to Butterfield and Vallis
who provided the new kitchen to managers Esther and Paula and their team. I also appreciate the hard work of our chef Javaha and his team. Finally, I would like to thank WEDCO and the locals.
“I could not have done it without their hard work.
“I think what we have achieved with Café Amici shows you do not have to have millions of dollars to have a nice restaurant.”