TAMPA PALMS Cappy's Pizza, a Tampa-based restaurant chain, is planning a summer debut at City Plaza.
The pizzeria is set to open in July in space previously leased by Ciccio’s Lodge, said Harold Hasselback, who will be the managing partner at the Cappy’s in Tampa Palms.
Hasselback, 39, of Seminole Heights is teaming up with Ryan Hess, Bryan Bates and Jeff Powers, who run Cappy’s Pizza locations in Riverview and St. Petersburg, to open his first franchise restaurant.
“I just love what I do,” said Hasselback, who works at Cappy’s in South Tampa and Riverview.
The move to ownership was a logical next step, he said.
The Cappy’s in Tampa Palms will occupy slightly more than 2,000 square feet in the shopping center at Tampa Palms and Bruce B. Downs boulevards.
Hasselback sees the New Tampa area as an ideal spot because there are only a few other dine-in pizza restaurants in the community, he said. He expects the Tampa Palms location to flourish once it opens.
For a suburban-style bedroom community teeming with small children and teenagers, New Tampa and neighboring Tampa Palms are not awash in pizza parlors.
Several exist in New Tampa north of I-4, including Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, Marco Pizza and Westshore Pizza. There are only one or two dine-in pizzerias in Tampa Palms south of Interstate 75.
The original Cappy's was founded in 1995 on Howard Avenue but has since relocated to Bay to Bay Boulevard.
Cappy’s has grown to include locations in Seminole Heights, Riverview and St. Petersburg. It promotes itself as a neighborhood hang-out with an unpretentious menu, featuring pizzas, salads, breadsticks and calzones.