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'Cake Boss' Buddy Valastro sounds starstruck as he opens on Broadway: 'Like the American dream'

Celebrity chef Buddy Valastro of "Cake Boss" realty show fame opened a new flagship location in Times Square as officials tout the return of pre-COVID bustle.

The "Cake Boss" is now a Broadway leading man. 

"It’s like the American dream," Buddy Valastro, the owner of Carlo’s Bake Shop, told Fox News Digital on Monday, just weeks after the celebrity baker quietly opened a new flagship location in Times Square in New York City.

"When you walk around Times Square, you just feel that vibe, the people, the energy. You get that feeling of hope and understand why anybody who comes to America has to see it."

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Valastro and his family-owned Hoboken, New Jersey bakery rose to national fame on the strength of the former TLC reality series "Cake Boss."

Valastro has become a fixture on TV while expanding his neighborhood bakery into a nationwide empire. Carlo's Bake Shop boasts additional locations in New Jersey, Connecticut, Florida, Minnesota, Texas and Nevada.

The first-generation Italian-American baker, famed for his ambitious cake designs, has grown into a larger-than-life celebrity chef across broadcast, digital and social media. 

Valastro has 17 million followers on Facebook, nearly 7 million on TikTok and more than 6 million on Instagram. 

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But he still sounded starstruck in a phone interview, walking in the footsteps of Hoboken’s most famous son to make it big on Broadway. 

"If I can make it there, I'll make it anywhere," Frank Sinatra famously crooned about New York City.

As Valastro put it, "To have this location on Broadway — it’s like a pinch-me moment."

The Times Square location is just one block from Carlo’s Bake Shop’s original Midtown Manhattan location next to the bustling Port Authority Terminal on 42nd Street.

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The new bakery, however, occupies one of the preeminent spaces in global retail real estate in the busy Crossroads of the World on Broadway between West 43rd and West 44th Streets. 

The Times Square "bowtie" attracts upward of 350,000 pedestrians each day. It's a trophy location for many of the world's most successful food brands.

Spending dollars in the fourth quarter of 2023 in Times Square exceeded any quarter of 2019, according to Tom Harris, president of the Times Square Alliance — indicating a strong recovery from the devastation of COVID-19 lockdowns.

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"By and large, we're doing well," said Harris. "There's something here to eat for everyone, from Taco Bell to five-star restaurants. Carlo's Bake Shop is a wonderful addition."

Carlo's Bake Shop offers exclusive Times Square-only sweets, including colorful fruit-topped tres leches and cookies & milk cakes topped with plenty of frothy cream and crumbled cookies.

Valastro plans a glitzy grand opening in March as tourists flood back to New York City.

"There’s no place on earth like Times Square," he said. 

For more Lifestyle articles, visit www.foxnews.com/lifestyle.

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