A new Italian restaurant will create up to 15 jobs when it opens in south Belfast next month.
Kristian Nicolo and Stephen Toney, who co-own Nico's Pizza Pasta takeaway in south Belfast, are to expand their portfolio with the new restaurant situated at the former Doorsteps premises at 54 Lisburn Road.
They took over the premises, which faces the City Hospital, a couple of months ago and it is currently undergoing a full refurbishment.
They hope to open the doors of the Nico's Pizzeria restaurant at the beginning of next month.
They have been trading at their takeaway for six years. It won best takeaway in Northern Ireland at the British Takeaway Awards on two occasions.
Mr Nicolo said they wanted to expand into having a sit-in restaurant and will offer lunch and dinner menus.
They have applied for a drinks licence for the new restaurant.
"We have a popular takeaway in south Belfast and we also did operate a Nico's in east Belfast, but this branch is now closed to allow us to open and concentrate on our first sit-in restaurant which we have dreamed of doing for many years," said Mr Nicolo.
"But we still deliver to the east Belfast area from our south Belfast store so our delivery customers remained unaffected."
The restaurant will have capacity for 40 guests, with an additional 20 outside.
The owners say they are hoping to build on the success of Nico's Pizza Pasta on Sunnyside Street, where they currently employ 30 staff.
"Business is booming at the moment in Nico's and trade increases on a weekly basis. We have great feedback thanks to our dedicated staff that make this possible," he said.
"Many of the staff have been working with us from day one."
The menu will feature the same favourites from Nico's and will expand to include other pasta dishes and also cater to gluten-free and vegan diners.
Mr Nicolo grew up working in his father's restaurant in Reggio Calabria in southern Italy and has lived in Belfast for 19 years.
"We have been lucky to have the experience and family recipes that to this day are being used at Nico's and by our family in Calabria," he added.
Initially, the new restaurant will be open for lunch and dinner and, down the line, Mr Nicolo said they may also offer a brunch menu. He said there has been great interest in their new venture from passers-by and on social media. "We have been getting a crazy amount of exciting social media messages from current customers looking forward to trying this new restaurant experience. We are expecting to start off with a bang," he added.