When Gaurav and Nidhi Nayyar traveled from their home in Calgary to pay a visit to the East Coast last year, it didn’t take them long to realize this is exactly where they wanted to be.
The couple had decided to make the trip after hearing wonderful things about the Maritimes from a driver who had made a stop at the tire shop Gaurav was managing in the Calgary area. The two had been initially thinking about taking a trip to northern Canada but found themselves changing their minds after that conversation.
They were contemplating buying a business at the time and figured they could take a look at what was available here.
“We thought, why don’t we bite the bullet and go see? We might like it.”
Originally from India, Guarav came to Canada in 2013 after being given an opportunity to take on a managerial position at a restaurant in the Calgary area. Nidhi joined him a year and a half later with their 13-month-old son.
Gaurav said they had been wanting to come to Canada so when the opportunity knocked, they jumped at the chance.
“Life doesn’t give you chances like that all the time so you have to take them when you can,” he said.
The Nayyar family loves Canada, a country with the “nicest people in the world” and a place where there is plenty of natural beauty, wide open spaces, fresh water and food, and more.
“You can’t get anything fresher or healthier than you can in Canada,” said Guarav.
They had made their home in Calgary for five and a half years but after making the trip east, they quickly fell in love with New Brunswick. And they soon found themselves making plans to buy a business here.
Both had years of experience in the hospitality industry so they knew a restaurant would be a good fit for them. Initially considering an opportunity in Saint John, Gaurav said the deal ended up falling through. But a couple of days later, he heard from a representative from Pizza Delight head office who told him about “a deal you might be interested in.”
That’s when they came to Sackville for the first time – and checked out a Pizza Delight location that had been shut down several months before.
“I came in and looked at this restaurant and was blown away,” said Gaurav.
He was excited about the potential of the site – he thought it was a prime location right off the Trans Canada highway and had also heard about Maritimers’ love for the Pizza Delight brand (and their donairs!).
A few months later, they relocated to New Brunswick and started working on getting the restaurant back up and running. It was reopened this past April.
The two know they are faced with a challenge – the restaurant has had three previous owners who, for some reason, have not been able to make it a successful venture. But they are optimistic.
Nidhi said the biggest concern they have heard from customers about the restaurant in the past was long waits for food.
“So our biggest focus is making sure quality food goes out in a timely manner,” she said.
Lack of experience from kitchen staff seemed to be a problem in previous attempts at running the restaurant so the Nayyars want to make sure they get it right. They are still looking for a number of staff members, both for kitchen and wait staff, to fill out their team. In the meantime, the two have been going full out in the kitchen themselves ensuring they are getting out the best products.
They are listening to and learning from their customers, she said, and so there are a number of changes in the works for the restaurant. They recently re-introduced the lunch buffet on Sundays and are also considering bringing back daily specials and a new power hour deal from 3-4 p.m.
Guarav said they have been thrilled with the support and assistance they have gotten since being here – from the staff at Sackville town hall to their supportive customers.
“It’s mind blowing how welcoming and helpful everyone is,” he said. “It makes me think we couldn’t be any luckier.”