A high-end authentic Italian restaurant is preparing to open up its doors.

Caldesi will take over the former Calici restaurant in Belsize Lane, in the heart of Belsize Village, after it suddenly closed its doors in December.

Owner Giancarlo Caldesi has already established his name in London after being in the city for 50 years, opening his restaurant in Marylebone in 2002 and running his cooking school La Cucina Cladesi with his wife Katie for nearly 17 years.

The TV chef, who first starred in the BBC series Return to Tuscany and has also appeared on shows such as Saturday Kitchen and Masterchef, hopes to be welcomed by the community in Belsize Park.

Talking to the Ham&High, Mr Caldesi said: “The ground floor will be totally renovated, that’s what we need to do. The kitchen will be renovated as well, there’s a lot of work to be done.”

While an official opening date has not yet been set, the chef has his heart set on the end of February.

Once open, he promises to provide “Good service and excellent food, with sharing plates, main courses and affordable bites.”

He added: “We want to become a genuine, good looking, nice feeling comfortable little place.

“The impression I get is that we will be welcome, but I want to make sure we’re welcome to begin with.”

He is currently in the process of hiring some staff, while some from his current restaurants will be joining in the Belsize Park team.

Mr Caldesi continued: “I’ve been in London in the last 50 years, and I’ve made sure that knowing Belsize Park, Marylebone, all of these places which are wonderful areas really.”

Robert Stephenson-Padron, co-ordinator of the Belsize Village Business Association, said: “A wonderful addition to the village.

"Welcome Caldesi to beautiful Belsize Village. Thank you for fittingly investing in the Italian piazza in London.”