20 Before-and-After Restaurant: Impossible Transformations

Hats off to Robert Irvine and his team for pulling off these impressive renovations.

Josephine's Southern Cooking

Between the torn carpet and plastic-covered tables that he hasn't seen "since Elvis was around," Robert hardly knew where to start with this mother- and son-owned restaurant. Thankfully, Robert and his crafty designers took steps like reupholstering the booths and adding windows to modernize and open up the room for a refined and improved look.

The Chez Olga

When Robert's design team took a deeper look at Chez Olga, they realized that literally nothing was nailed down anywhere - it was a disaster. Fortunately, they removed sinking tiles to reveal a gorgeous tin ceiling and put up new murals to honor the heritage and whimsy of the original interior.

Al's Seafood

On first look, designer Taniya said Al's Seafood reminds her of her grandfather's basement. Luckily, Robert and his team were able to brighten up the dark ambience with new paint while still honoring the character of the original building with its portholes and mural.

Besse's on Clear Lake

With its outdated furnishings and no focus on its beautiful lakefront environment, Besse's interior was a cry for help. Among other fixes, Robert and his design team put on a fresh coat of paint and put up a mirror so no matter where you are, you remember you are at the beautiful lake.

Chianti Cow

Robert and his team took this old and claustrophobic interior and revitalized it with a stenciled tile bar and a modern chalkboard mural.

Foxfire Grill

When Robert stepped in to the restaurant, he didn't see anything that made it unique and welcoming. The designers spiced up the restaurant by taking down dividers to open up the space, adding bold patterns and colors, and a bright neon sign.

Perella's Ristorante

Robert's initial impression of this Italian place was that it felt like an old and tired diner rather than a family restaurant. The team gave it a fresh coat of paint and tin tile accents. To emphasize the farmhouse pitch-style roof, they added rafters and painted the ceiling a bright color, making the end result feel much more like an Italian restaurant than before.

Drake's Place

This uninspired family-run restaurant had clashing colors and sinking ceilings. Robert's team turns it around by adding in more natural wood for a rustic and homey feel. They used floor tiles to texture the wall in an economical way.

The Balcony

Robert was first aghast at the interior of The Balcony, noting that it feels like he's dining at a prison with its dark and dilapidated surfaces. Robert's designers brighten up the space with fun colors and New Orleans-inspired shutters. The room is split with a faux-balcony made from original 18th-century wrought iron.

Loyd Have Mercy

This nondescript soul food restaurant had nothing welcoming about it at all. Robert's team reupholstered booths and took down a wall dividing the room to turn it into a banquet-style island to open the room.

The Emporium

This cluttered eatery with furniture falling apart at the seams got a second chance when Robert and his team revived it with reupholstered booths, rustic paint, a chalkboard mural, and a wagon wheel chandelier.


With a musty carpet and an unnecessary wall damming up the space, Millonzi's was a fixer-upper. Robert sledgehammered the wall down (because of course he did!) to open up the interior so his design team could lighten up the walls and bar area so that now there's a modern Italian feel.

Park Vue Soul Food Bar and Restaurant

Robert thought Park Vue looked like a "banquet hall that someone threw together in their house!" The designers breathed new life into it by upgrading the furniture and spicing up the walls with murals and tiles. They also added fun dividers spelling out "SOUL" in neon lights to put the spirit back into the place.

Polaris Street Cafe

This Las Vegas spot was stuffy with cheap furniture. But with new tables and chairs, improved lighting, and a gorgeous new bar, this cafe quickly became a cozy haven for the owner and her customers.

Dunbar's Creole Cuisine

On a scale of 1 to 10 for a desire to eat here, Robert gave it a negative one. This restaurant was bare and bland before Team Robert came through. After they did their magic, Dunbar's has New Orleans-inspired charm with antique lamp lighting and colorful window dividers to give it some soul.

Incredible Cafe

With grimy chipped tables and incoherent design choices, this cafe was in desperate need of help. Luckily, Robert and his team arrived to save it with bright yellow accents, gorgeous wood, and a modern neon sign that reads "INCREDIBLE".

Copper Steer Steakhouse

This musty, dirty, dark steakhouse didn't have much thought put into it, and its only unique elements were lost in the dim lighting. Robert and his team put a new spin on it with bright Southwestern colors and added chandeliers to lighten up the gorgeous rafterwork. Robert boldly took down an entire wall to reveal the beautiful wooden bar so that the customers immediately felt welcome and at home.


Though there was a unique side to the restaurant with a banquet-style counter in a marketplace setting, Filomena's felt disjointed and unfocused. Robert's team enacted their ambitious plan by completely gutting the claustrophobic bar and brightening up the dining room so the market and dining area now feel like one cohesive space.

Cosentino's Ristorante

This nondescript eatery with tired lighting sparked zero joy in Robert. With the help of his handy design team, Robert modernized the lights and updated the furniture while still keeping it cozy and inviting.

Casa di Francesca's

This dark, salmonella-infested restaurant clearly had not been cared for in years. Thanks to Robert and his team, Francesca's was improved with reupholstered booths, new shelving, Italian shutter walls, and a bright new vinyl wood flooring.