Commercial property executive Paul Daneshrad put himself through college waiting tables and managing restaurants, telling himself someday he would open his own place.
“It has been a dream and a passion, and that’s what led me here,” said Daneshrad, CEO of Starpoint Properties, a real estate company based in Beverly Hills.
The new restauranteur will open Vivo 53 Pizzeria next week in Fort Worth, Texas, with a second location to open later this year in the old Boom Noodle space at Bellevue Square; the space was briefly occupied by Kaisho, the izakaya restaurant relocating to Capitol Hill last August.
“Each location will have a different design. At the Bellevue location it’s going to be a little more modern than the Texas location, and I would say it’s going to be a little more edgier,” Daneshrad said. “What’s going to be similar is it’s going to be a wood-burning oven and a dough (the recipe taking three years to perfect) that is completely artisan in its nature.”
Permits have been submitted with the city, and Daneshrad expects construction to start sometime in April. He said a display kitchen will wrap around the large oven, allowing customers to watch their pizzas being made. The pizzeria will also serve pastas and chopped salads customers can design their way.
“The entire restaurant will be oriented around a wood-burning oven that’s about 30 feet tall,” Daneshrad said.
Vivo 53 brought in Greg Bleier of Studio Unltd to design the Bellevue space. Bleier was behind the design for Zagat-rated Italian favorite, Bestia, in Los Angeles, which also topped the 2013 list of most stylish restaurants in LA.
Daneshrad credits his restaurant consultant for picking Bellevue as the next location for Vivo 53, the consultant himself living just 10 minutes from the city.
“I would say he was the big impetus in finding a great location,” he said. “We’re projecting to have Bellevue open in August.”
Vivo means bright or alive in Italian, and is a word Daneshrad said accurately reflects the concept of his restaurant.
“The entire concept is very Italian and Italian-inspired,” he said, “and so we wanted an Italian word that was a good representation of the food and the style of food.”