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Big Plans Afoot for O4W House Where Lanterns were Born

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[Photos: Christopher T. Martin, Curbed Atlanta]

"We are planning for these potentially large numbers," Jenny Odom, Beltline spokeswoman, tells Curbed Atlanta. "In previous years, we've seen a trend that triple the number of people attend who RSVP to the event on Facebook. If that's any indication, one can run an estimate based on 4,800 people having RSVP'ed." We set out to photograph the bungalow at 589 Ralph McGill Blvd — the "Lantern House" — where the magical vessels of light were being born. And we stumbled into news that the site itself will be transformed into a restaurant and residence soon, marking another significant change to a key pocket of the Old Fourth Ward.

The house, a former salon, sits at the corner of Ralph McGill Boulevard and Glen Iris Drive, across the street from John Wieland's proposed townhomes and kitty-corner from a large multifamily proposal with more than 200 residential units. Behind the bungalow, construction is under way on a private residence for property owner George DeMeglio.

DeMeglio shared his plans for an Italian/Latin restaurant called "Il Gusto," which he hopes to open in 2015. (Construction should begin early next year). Here's a teaser for DeMeglio's vision:

"Echoing the personality of O4W, Il Gusto will be a neighborhood bistro with a casual atmosphere and timeless style. We are not out to create a new cuisine, but to make traditional Italian and Latin dishes more accessible. As with the kitchen, the bar will incorporate fresh and local into its selections. We look forward to opening our doors to our neighbors in the fall of 2015."

DeMeglio says his consulting chefs are Bruce Logue (of BoccaLupo) and "a sous chef from one of Atlanta's premier restaurant families." He'll also have Jeff Russel (Great Northern Pasta Company) consulting on establishing a fresh pasta program.

As for the Lantern Parade, it begins about 8:30 p.m. Saturday near Krog Street Market.

· Vote Now: Old Versus New in O4W. Who Should Prevail? [Curbed Atlanta]