A historic Buffalo home on Virginia Street is an attention grabber. People have been known to pull over when driving by and even look inside the windows.
"We've actually let people come in to see it. There's such a draw to the house," says home owner David DePasquale.
He has lived in Buffalo his entire life and became enthralled by the establishment on 467 Virginia Street, which was built back in 1894 by photographer E. F. Hall.
DePasquale met Brazilian artist Cristiano Pereira, who came to Buffalo to get his doctorate degree. After falling in love, the couple purchased the home in May 2015, moved in half of a year later, and said "I do" the following month. The freshly married couple began restoring the building right away.
"It's been a stress on our marriage, on top of all the immigration process we had to go through to get Cris into the United States permanently as well, so we survived that as a couple. I think it made it stronger dealing with being shut in for a while, it's given us something to focus on," says DePasquale.
"David is a visionary. He has flipped and restored houses before. I'm not sure if he's done something like this, but he had the knowledge, so I trusted him, because when we came, it was in really bad shape. I was like, 'Wow.' Just overwhelmed," adds Cristiano Pereira.
With DePasquale's general contracting knowledge, Pereira's artistic skills, and hard work, the restoration is well underway. The hope is to have everything complete by this year or next.
"Most people probably would have just painted this over, because it's so chipped and so destroyed. The right couple found the house," says DePasquale.
After years of restoration work and craftsmanship, the couple has decided that the entrance should be enjoyed by the public. They plan to open a cafe/gallery. Anyone who would like to learn more about the project can visit their website.