Fans of the old Shakespeare's Pizza in downtown Columbia may experience a slight feeling of deja vu as they enter its new home on the original site—that's because nearly all aspects of the space have been recreated.
"The original dining room is the same. A lot of the wood panels on the walls are the same boards—we numbered those and put them back in the same order to keep the pattern of wear the same," Shakespeare's manager Kurt Mirtsching explained. "We had detailed photographs of the entire restaurant, so we tried to put things back as much as we could in the same fashion."
Service began in the location for a select crowd of friends and family Friday evening.
"People will be stunned that [the reproduction] is so exact," Wally Pfeffer, a long time Columbia resident said during the event, "but I wouldn't expect anything less."
The restaurant may look a lot like it did when the Ninth Street location last closed its doors in 2015, but Mirtshing said that for Shakespeare's, part of the tradition will continue to be change.
"The reality was that Shakespeare's was constantly morphing and changing over the years. In the future we're going to change things like we always have, but for now, we wanted it to be like a time warp and it just started up again."