A long-loved St. Paul staple is making a transition into the future.

Ristorante Luci (pictured above, credit Jeff Wheeler), an Italian eatery that exploded in popularity during the 1990s, will shutter its 470 Cleveland Av. S. location on Dec. 31 after nearly 30 years.

The family-run business, however, will live on at Luci Ancora at 2060 Randolph Ave., which is entering its 19th year.

The restaurant was opened by Al and Lucille Smith, who lived in Naples for about 11 years before returning to their native St. Paul.

The two spots share many of the same menu items, focusing on classic pastas along with a few entree items. Both locations also offer a tasting menu.

“We have had some beautiful years in the cozy space of 470 Cleveland Ave. S.,” a statement from Al, Steve, Daniela and Maria Smith read, in part. “It is our mother and father’s original dream of sharing deliciously made, hand-crafted Italian inspired dishes in a warm and inviting setting where we can gather with family, friends and acquaintances to enjoy.”

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