When Tony's restaurant opened in 1963, Keith Holyoake was New Zealand's prime minister, Martin Luther King Jr delivered his "I have a dream" speech and John F Kennedy was America's president - but was assassinated that year.
The eatery, which holds the bragging rights as the oldest surviving restaurant in downtown Auckland, now faces possible closure as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The restaurant was started by the late Tony White on February 16, 1963, but has been owned and operated by Kenn Henderson for the last 42 years.
It started as an Italian pasta house but later became a dining destination for steaks. Its specialty was its "world famous" steak stuffed with raw oysters - The Carpet Bag.
Kenn, 74, remembers a time when queues would form, often stretching down to Queen St, but now he'll be happy if the restaurant was half full at peak serving times.
But he said the restaurant has been struggling with the impact of the City Rail Link construction works, and the coronavirus outbreak had left them "close to a point of no return".
Kenn is making a last ditch plea to loyal customers, and diners who have had great memories created at Tony's, for support to help save the restaurant.
"Traffic can't come and go on Wellesley St, if you want to come by foot, you virtually need to get a guide dog through the maze of fences they have erected," Kenn said.
"We've had people who made bookings, but called in to cancel because they said there was no way for them to get here."
Kenn said he had approached the his landlord, the Icon Group, for assistance with rent relief but the help given had been "meagre".
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"I'm facing bankruptcy, after 42 years of working here, it will be an awful outcome for me," Kenn said.
"This place is an iconic one and a dining destination. If you ask a taxi driver 'where can I go for a decent steak', they'll point you to Tony's Wellesley St."
Over the 42 years, 3,286,000 steaks have been cooked at the restaurant for diners, Kenn said.
"There's an awful lot of people who've come here, had an enjoyable evening, and if we just get them to come back and have a night with us, that would be delightful," Kenn said.
"That is what we need - for the people who love the place to come back."
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Customer Jenni Jamieson, 68, said Tony's restaurant "will always have a special place in my heart".
"In 1978, our son was going to be induced on the next day and we came in for a meal that day," she said.
"The day after he was born, my husband came back and bought me a takeaway meal and brought it to me in hospital."
Her husband Phil later worked at Tony's as a chef for a few years and also helped to build an extension.
Jamieson's son also worked at the restaurant for a while as a waiter.
Kelson Henderson, 44, Kenn's son, who has been part of the restaurant since he was a toddler said Tony's restaurant was "like the heart" of Auckland's dining scene.
"Sometimes people just want to go back to that old favourite...and that's us," he said.
"Now's the time that you visit that old favourite, if not maybe that old favourite won't be there anymore."
Marisa Bidois, Restaurant Association chief executive, said it would be a massive loss for Auckland and the hospitality industry should Tony's close.
"It's a terrible loss for our industry. Tony's is an iconic restaurant and will be missed by many," Bidois said.
"It has been a challenging year for our industry and we will inevitably see more businesses closing."
The oldest Thai restaurant in the central city, Mai Thai, closed in April after more than 30 years.