A new cafe opening near the Arc de Triomphe in Paris normally sparks good news. But, this time, the cafe is causing nothing but controversy over its name.
This is because it’s named by Lucia Riina, part of an infamous Italian mob boss family, who named the cafe Corleone after the family’s home town.
Lucia Riina is the youngest child of the infamously cruel crime boss Salvatore ‘Totò’ Riina. Earning the nickname ‘The Beast’, Salvatore Riina was believed to be responsible for the deaths of hundreds of people, including his rivals, journalists, judges and law officials that got in his way. The most famous of his crimes was the brutal kidnapping and murder of a 13-year-old boy, whose body was dissolved in acid after his death. Eventually, Salvatore Riina was captured and sentenced to serve 26 life sentences in prison, where he died in 2017, after being diagnosed with cancer.
The naming of the restaurant has caused controversy in Italy. This is particularly true of the named town of Corleone in Sicily, as mayor Nicolò Nicolosi states that the naming of the restaurant is “completely unacceptable” and is not fair to the family of Riina’s victims that their family is profiting off a crime-filled vision of the city.
The controversy could work in their favour, sparking the interest of many visitors to the cafe. This would particularly work for those who are fans of the Godfather trilogy by Francis Ford Coppola, as Corleone is also the name of the fictional crime boss family portrayed in the movies.
However, unlike the movies, the cafe is promoted to have a welcoming atmosphere and serve authentic Sicilian-Italian food.
In response to the outcry, Lucia Riina has removed her name from the restaurant and claimed that she’s just a waitress who greets and serves its guests, while her husband works in the bar. She said that "I do not want to be associated with the image of my father” and instead wants to be known for her paintings and who she is today.
[source: https://www.thelocal.it/20190115/lucia-riina-restaurant-corleone-paris-daughter-of-toto-riina-mafia-italy ]
Thinking about opening your own cafe or giving yours a new lease of life?
We can’t help you pick a name but, we can provide the high-quality cafe furniture and designs you need to bring your cafe to life.
Interested? Get in touch with our team today.