FLORENCE, S.C. (WBTW) — For the last 17 years, Chris Mitropolous owned The Lamplighter Restaurant in Florence. But in August 2020, he had to shut his doors due to a fire. Fast forward six months, Mitropolous is preparing to reopen his doors on Monday, but with a new name and location.
Chris’s Diner is located on 1513 Pamplico Hwy. At this location customers can find the same menu and even staff that was at Lamplighter, which was a staple in the Florence area for over 40 years.
“I miss all of my customers,” Mitropolous said. “All of my dependable, dedicated customers. I really miss them. They are more than a customer, they are like a friend, family and I like to see them again and I do my best to serve them and please them.”
Even with a new location, the employees remained loyal to Mitropolous. They have been out of work since the fire shut them down. Waitress Aime Allen worked at Lamplighter for seven years and said Chris and his family, plus her love for her job is what made her stay.
“The money yes…it is a living, but it becomes, I could’ve went out and got other jobs, but I’m attached to my customers. I’m attached to this place,” Allen said.
Adrian Smith, head cook, also remained loyal to Mitropolous.
“It was a nice journey, I mean to come to Lamplighter, and for him to move to actually have his own name in his own little spot, yea that’s major,” Smith said.
Mitropolous’ daughter, Sophia, said she’s proud of her dad and all the hard work he puts in.
“He’s always been like this. He never complains. He just gets things done. He was really optimistic about everything ever since it happened, even when it did happen he would go to the restaurant and try to find things to piece together,” Sophia said.
Chris Mitropolous said he is looking to hire dependable and skillful workers from cashiers, waiters busboys. He says you can call the restaurant at 843-702-0009 if you are interested in working at Chris’s Diner.
The grand opening is Monday, March 1st at 6:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.