City American diner reopens after £15,000 overhaul
- Credit: Chris Williams
"Some people don't like change but we need to in order to survive."
That was the sentiment from Chris Williams, director of Captain America's in Norwich, which has recently reopened after a major refurbishment.
Founded in 1972, Captain America's is one of the city's oldest restaurants.
After closing its doors last Christmas, the business only reopened two weeks ago following 10 months of revamp work and Covid lockdowns.
"It's been a long time coming. The work itself took around four and a half months to complete," said Mr Williams.
"We initially didn't want to change the concept because we were worried about upsetting people, but there comes a time when you need to do what needs to be done for the good of the business."
Although reluctant to change at first, Mr Williams said he recognised the importance of freshening up the restaurant to appeal to a younger generation.
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"The best way to put it is if you bought a frock in 1972, you aren't still going to wear it in 2021," he said.
"We know we need to adapt to hit different age groups and we couldn't be more pleased with the work that's been completed."
In total, Captain America's spent more than £15,000 on labour costs alone, but despite the sum, Mr Williams believes it has been well worth it.
"It was a lot of money but we are now looking better than ever," he said.
"The restaurant is very quirky and definitely has a New York vibe about it. We've even got a zinc bar and have brought back our famous cocktails."
Despite changes to the layout and design of the restaurant, the food remains unchanged.
"We managed to retain the same chef despite being closed for the majority of the year which was massive," added Mr Williams.
"It's the same burgers and ribs - it's just a different model of Captain America's now."
According to Mr Williams, the initial reaction from customers to the changes have been overwhelmingly positive.
"Everyone has come in and said how fantastic it is now," he said.
"Most people have also said that it needed doing so it seems like we’ve done what everyone thought we should've done but never told us.
"We're so happy to be back."