Havana Express restaurant flooded and shut down 2 weeks after op - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Havana Express restaurant flooded and shut down 2 weeks after opening

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Sergio Perez dumps out a trash can filled with water (FOX5). Sergio Perez dumps out a trash can filled with water (FOX5).

A brand new restaurant that just opened two weeks ago in east Las Vegas is now shut down because of extensive damage from this week's rain storms.

Havana Express, on Tropicana and Eastern, served Cuban food until a damaged roof forced the business to close.

Sergio Perez, the owner of the restaurant, said normally the kitchen smells great. Now it smells like mold.

"Oh, the food's amazing. Ropa Vieja, picadillo, empanadas, croquetas," Perez said. "It's a good flavor."

Perez showed FOX5 at least two dozen locations where the roof leaked water onto the floor, furniture and appliances within the restaurant. Giant trash cans and buckets were filled with water. Hundreds of gallons of water were dumped out into the parking lot. Some lights flickered. Others stopped working entirely.

"The roof guy, he tried to protect the roof," Perez said, pointing to giant blue tarps overhead. "I've never had this situation in my life. This complete restaurant, it's damaged."

Perez said he had been talking to his landlord for six months, trying to make sure the roof was finished being repaired. On Tuesday, the second day of flooding, Perez showed FOX5 a text message which stated "the leak" should be fixed soon.

"I'm currently out of the country but I have been up to date with the leak at the unit," read the text message. "Please note that the contractor was supposed to be done with all roof repairs last week. Unfortunately, It took longer than expected. I believe you have already spoken to the contractor and that he has communicated that he will be at the unit in the morning doing all the necessary repairs. Sorry for the inconvenience. It will be taken care of as soon as possible."

Perez said he will likely have to lay off his 15 employees and now has to worry about hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of repairs. An insurance agent on site said the restaurant will need to be fully remodeled.

"It's very bad. It's very bad," he said. "My time, my money, and all the employees lose their jobs. It's a very bad situation."

Perez owns and operates two other Cuban restaurants in Las Vegas: Havana Grill and Florida Cafe.

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