And it’s gone. The iconic Boathouse restaurant at the idyllic seaside village of Xlendi has been demolished.
A picture sent to Times of Malta showed the building razed to the ground, as part of plans to build two huge apartment blocks in the former fishing village.
The announcement of the pending construction was met with a wave of anger and despair last month. Heritage group Din L-Art Ħelwa Għadwex even made a last ditch call for people to rally to "preserve this one corner of the old Xlendi".
People were first alerted when two restaurants, including the Boathouse, told patrons they were planning to reopen in the first half of 2022 in a “brand-new environment”.
But when the restaurants return in 2022, they are set to have above them massive blocks of apartments.
Objectors have described the development as “a final blow” to Xlendi.
A planning application approved last year paves the way for the demolishing of the existing Boathouse and the construction of a six-storey building, with the restaurant on two floors and four overlying flats.
The adjacent Stone Crab is also up for development with a permit, approved back in 2019, for a seven-storey building, following demolition of the existing two floors to construct the restaurant and a hotel.