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Longtime Little Five Points Pizzeria Cameli’s Pizza Is Closing in December

Cameli’s last day on Moreland Avenue is December 11

Cameli’s Pizza

Longtime Little Five Points pizzeria Cameli’s Pizza is closing next month after a decade on Moreland Avenue, and over two decades in business in Atlanta. Owner George Cameli announced the December 11 closure of his eponymous pizzeria on Facebook, citing continued struggles stemming from the pandemic.

“For over 26 years, Cameli’s has been a part of the Intown Atlanta landscape and we are incredibly proud to have been there in the earlier days that helped define Intown Atlanta,” Cameli writes in the post. “The last three years have taken their toll on us and we just simply can’t continue.”

Cameli goes on to thank patrons and past and present employees, noting that the restaurant is currently short staffed and for people to be patient and “leave a fat tip” during the pizzeria’s final weeks. The building was listed for sale in March, according to the Atlanta Business Chronicle, with Cameli saying that he hoped the buyer would continue to operate the pizzeria, but would consider “the right offer” if a new owner chose to open another restaurant in the space.

In 2016, the second floor rooftop patio of the pizzeria briefly became Acadia, a retro-style restaurant run by the Cameli family serving country-fried pork chops, chicken pot pie, Monte Cristo sandwiches, and sloppy Joes. It closed a year later and returned to operating as a rooftop patio.

Cameli’s Pizza first opened in Poncey-Highland on Ponce de Leon Avenue in 1996 when the Beltline and Ponce City Market didn’t exist. That all began to change in 2012 when the Eastside Beltline trail opened, followed by the transformation of the former Sears, Roebuck and Co. building into Ponce City Market two years later, then the largest adaptive-reuse complex in the Southeast. Cameli expressed his concerns over rapid gentrification in the area and the adverse effects redevelopment would have on his business.

The Poncey-Highland location closed in 2017 after two decades on Ponce. At the time, Cameli’s Pizza shared a parking lot with the Kroger store on the property, both of which sat adjacent to the Eastside Beltline trail. The Kroger closed in 2016 ahead of redevelopment plans for the property, including the grocery store being demolished and rebuilt. Construction and parking problems did negatively impact the restaurant, leading to Cameli’s decision to close the Poncey-Highland location.

Vegan pizzeria Pizza Verdura Sincera opens in the former Zesto location next year on the corner of Moreland and Euclid, one block north of Cameli’s Pizza.

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