Russo's New York Pizzeria recently marked its debut in Dubai at the Jumeirah Center Dubai. The opening is Russo's first outside of the United States.

"Right from the moment customers walk in they know they've come somewhere special. They're getting a true 'slice' of New York," said Nawwaf Ghobash, director of UAE-based Ghobash Trading & Investment, which operates the Russo's New York Pizzeria in the UAE under Prime Hospitality.

The restaurant celebrated its arrival in Dubai with a grand opening event hosted by founder Chef Anthony Russo.

Additional pizzerias are planned for the Al Wahda Mall Extension in Abu Dhabi (this month) and Sahara Centre Extension in Sharjah (May 2013). The expansion of Russo's New York Pizzeria into the United Arab Emirates signals the start of international franchise growth for the brand throughout the Middle East. Restaurants are also slated to open in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Doha, Qatar, Kuwait City, Kuwait and Manama, Bahrain.

"There is nowhere else we'd rather bring our first restaurant outside of the United States than right here in the UAE where people demand the best. Russo's New York Pizzeria delivers on its promise to serve the best New York pizza ever made," Russo said.

Beyond the brand's specialty pizzas, menu items include fresh salads (Insalata), soups (Zuppe) and homemade pastas.

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