Arlington, VA

Ballston Quarter (4238 Wilson Blvd) has launched a pair of initiatives to try to help restaurants hold on through the pandemic.

First, the mall is offering anyone who orders $50 worth of takeout or delivery from a Ballston Quarter restaurant and submits an itemized receipt a $20 prepaid Visa card as a reward.

Participating restaurants include Chick-Fil-A, Compass Coffee, Hot Lola’s, Mezeh, Sidekick Bakery, South Block, Ted’s Bulletin, True Food Kitchen, Turu’s By Timber Pizza. Ballston Quarter owner Brookfield Properties is conducting the same “Dine and Delight” offer at its Tysons Galleria property.

The receipts must include the restaurant address, the date of the purchase, and a list of items ordered. The Dine & Delight program is run through Sunday, May 31.

The second initiative is in support of Feeding America, a hunger-relief nonprofit, which has set up a special fund to support overburdened food banks during the pandemic.

“Share a photo of a meal from one of our restaurants on Instagram using #DineDelightDonate and we’ll donate $10 for every post between April 24-June 30 up to $100,000,” Ballston Quarter said on its website.

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The Fashion Centre at Pentagon City closed last night and is expected to remain closed until at least the end of the month.

Mall owner Simon Property Group announced yesterday that it would close all of its U.S. shopping centers, including the Pentagon City mall, which has one of the company’s busiest and most profitable food courts.

More from the announcement:

After extensive discussions with federal, state and local officials and in recognition of the need to address the spread of COVID-19, Simon will close all of its retail properties, including Malls, Premium Outlets and Mills in the U.S. This measure will take effect from 7 pm local time on March 18 and will end on March 29*.

“The health and safety of our shoppers, retailers and employees is of paramount importance and we are taking this step to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our communities,” said David Simon, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of Simon.

Even before the closure, the coronavirus outbreak kept most people away from the usually-busy mall. And department store anchors Macy’s and Nordstrom both closed nationwide on Tuesday.

https://twitter.com/steezyysosa/status/1239714857399857154

A day before the closure, an employee of one of the mall’s stores told ARLnow that he was worried about the risk of disease from keeping the mall open.

“I am writing to you from my store now (I am required to be open while the mall is open) and there are about 30-40 people sitting in the food court eating. Coming in and shopping. Raising the risk of spreading COVID-19,” the employee wrote. “We as employees are calling out for help as we are constantly at risk of exposure. Our complaints to management go unnoticed. They have limited business hours, but that has only concentrated the amount of people in the mall to a shorter time.”

Ballston Quarter mall, meanwhile, remains open, though as of earlier this week customers were few and far between. The mall said stores and restaurants were free to close if deemed necessary.

“We are closely monitoring the rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic and will continue to provide updates via our website,” the mall said on its website. “Effective Monday, March 16, the shopping center will operate between noon and 7 p.m. every day except for Sunday, when the hours are noon to 6 p.m.”

“We recognize that, in light of concerns surrounding the coronavirus, retailers and merchants may implement their own corporate policies regarding modified hours or temporary store closures,” Ballston Quarter said. “Please make sure to check the restaurant or store hours prior to visiting.”

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After a little more than a year in business, the DC Lash Bar location in Ballston has closed.

Located in the outdoor, open-air portion of Ballston Quarter mall, the salon’s second location — after its original Georgetown location — originally opened in November 2018. It recently closed because “DC Lash Bar has decided not to renew its lease with Ballston Quarter,” a spokesperson told ARLnow.

It is unclear what business might eventually replace the salon but the DC Lash Bar signs have been removed and the space appears empty.

Going forward, the DC Lash Bar wants to open another location but isn’t sure where, the spokesperson said.

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Ballston is on the cusp of getting its second poke restaurant.

Go Poke is scheduled to open this Sunday, March 1, at the Quarter Market food hall in Ballston Quarter Mall. To mark the opening, the restaurant will be offering a 20% discount through Tuesday, according to a spokesman for the mall.

The restaurant will serve the increasingly ubiquitous Hawaiian raw fish dish. A full menu was not immediately available. It will be open 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. on Sundays.

Existing poke spots in Arlington include Poké it Up in the Pentagon City mall food court, Poke Bar in Rosslyn and — soon — another Poké it Up in Ballston, at 4401 Fairfax Drive. Other nearby restaurants offer poke bowls among a broader selection of food options.

Photos courtesy Brookfield Properties

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A pair of incidents at Arlington’s two shopping malls led to four arrests and charges against six people.

The first incident happened Wednesday afternoon at the Pentagon City mall. Around 3 p.m., according to Arlington County Police, two juvenile suspects shoplifted from a store and were soon thereafter located by officers at the Pentagon City Metro station. One of the suspects lashed out violently, spitting on and hitting officers, according to police.

More from an ACPD crime report:

ASSAULT ON LAW ENFORCEMENT, 2020-02190151, 1100 block of S. Hayes Street. At approximately 2:56 p.m. on February 19, police were dispatched to the report of shoplifting. Upon arrival, it was determined that suspects allegedly entered a business, stole items of value, and fled on foot. A lookout was broadcast and arriving officers located the juvenile suspects on the metro platform. One suspect actively resisted by pushing, elbowing and spitting on the two arresting officers. Once detained, she continued to resist and kicked two additional officers. Petitions for Assault and Battery on Police (x4) and Obstruction of Justice were sought for Suspect One. Petitions for Petit Larceny, Fugitive from Justice and Identity Theft were sought for Suspect Two.

Later Wednesday evening, four juvenile suspects allegedly shoplifted from a store at the Ballston Quarter mall. A security officer who tried to chase after and stop the group was pepper sprayed by one of the suspects, police say.

In coordination with Metro Transit Police, two suspects were later taken into custody at the Rosslyn Metro station.

From the crime report:

MALICIOUS WOUNDING BY CAUSTIC SUBSTANCE, 2020-02190225, 700 block of N. Glebe Road. At approximately 7:26 p.m. on February 19, police were dispatched to the report of an assault with injury. Upon arrival, it was determined that the victim was working as loss prevention for a business when he observed a group of juvenile suspects allegedly selecting and concealing merchandise. When he attempted to stop the group as they exited the business, they fled. The victim attempted to chase the suspects when one suspect allegedly dropped the merchandise he had, then pepper sprayed the victim. A lookout was broadcast and officers located and made contact with the suspects at the Rosslyn Metro Station and, with the assistance of Metro Transit Police, took them into custody without incident. Petitions were obtained for Suspect One for Malicious Wounding by Caustic Agent, Robbery, Grand Larceny and Possession of Burglarous Tools. Petitions for Conspiracy to Commit Felony and Grand Larceny were obtained for Suspect Two. Two additional suspects remain outstanding.

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Ballston Quarterfest — the event that replaced Taste of Arlington last year — is coming back this summer with some new features.

This year’s festival — now dubbed the Quaterfest Crawl — has been scheduled for May 16, along Wilson Blvd. between N. Taylor Street and N. Randolph Street. The event is scheduled to run from 12-8 p.m. rain or shine, which are extended hours compared to last year.

The event is hosted by BallstonGives, a charitable arm of the Ballston Business Improvement District.

Unlike Taste of Arlington, restaurants don’t come to Quarterfest’s main drag and set up tents. The Quarterfest Crawl is a for-purchase wristband that gets the visitor access to free tastings and special discounts on meals at dozens of restaurants around the neighborhood.

The event is free and open to the public, but a wristband is required to participate in the restaurant crawl and to get drink tickets for the street pub — a pop-up bar serving beer, cider, wine and cocktails. The Quarterfest Crawl wristband is $45 online before May 1, though there are other prices for other types of packages.

This year, the event is set to feature a new “culinary discovery” and expo pavilion at the center of the festival, also on Wilson Blvd.

“Think of the culinary discovery pavilion as a live cooking demonstration area with classroom seating and additional seating for people to stand and socialize,” Ballston BID spokeswoman Catherine Roper said said. You’ll also be able to try what’s being cooked.

“Think of this as Quarterfest’s Kitchen Stadium,” Roper said.

Meanwhile, at the expo pavilion, visitors can turn in a fully stamped “Crawl passport” to be entered to win two free tickets to a Washington Capitals game. Registration is now open for local businesses that want to sign up as exhibitors at the expo pavilion or as sponsors for the event.

In addition to food, drink and exhibitors, attendees will also be able to enjoy some live music. The following bands are scheduled to play throughout the event.

File photo

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It might not court the controversy of the new Columbia Heights Taco Bell Cantina, but national taco and tequila chain Bartaco is coming to Ballston Quarter.

The restaurant is one of the last remaining pieces for the recently-renovated mall, which has seen numerous eatery openings over the last year. It will be located adjacent to the Quarter Market food hall, with a new outdoor dining area in the Quarter Market courtyard.

The restaurant offers a variety of tacos — with ingredients from portobello mushrooms to pork carnitas to tuna — on 4-inch corn tortillas or lettuce shells. Most tacos range from $2.50-$3.50 per piece. Bartaco also offers rice bowls, salads, and more.

The Ballston Quarter location plans to serve cocktails, tequila, wine and beer as well.

Workers at the site are still in the early stages of construction and said they do not know when the restaurant will open. The Ballston Quarter website only says the restaurant is coming soon.

Bartaco currently has nearby locations in the Mosaic District and Reston Town Center.

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Fast-casual Mediterranean grill Mezeh is scheduled to open tomorrow on the Glebe Road side of Ballston Quarter mall (4238 Wilson Blvd).

The grand opening is scheduled to run from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., with the restaurant then reopening from 5:30-8 p.m. According to a press release and signs around the restaurant, visitors can get a free bowl with purchase of a drink, though steak or lamb bowls are $1.50 extra.

A growing chain, Mezeh started in Northern Virginia and has locations throughout Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina. The company’s first stand-alone restaurant opened in Crystal City (2450 Crystal Drive) in 2015.

In Ballston, Mezeh will face some stiff competition in the “fast-casual Mediterranean grill” market. Cava at 4121 Wilson Blvd attracts a consistently large lunch crowd and Arlington-based Lebanese Taverna’s quick-service concept LEBTAV opened at the corner of Wilson Blvd and N. Quincy Street last month.

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Making its mark in Ballston center is Origin, the newest residential tower featuring studio to two-bedroom residences. In particular, a variety of great one-bedroom floorplans are available right now to accommodate a range of lifestyles.

Walking into Origin´s residences feels serendipitous with its elevated level of finish and attention to detail that has gone into the design of every room.

The chef-inspired kitchens deliver high-end conveniences with its stainless steel Whirlpool appliances, Caesarstone quartz countertops, ceramic-tile backsplashes, under-cabinet task lighting and built-in pantries.

Bathrooms are designed to deliver the perfect energizing start to the day. Bathrooms feature quartz countertops with large illuminated vanity mirrors, plenty of under the sink storage space, Moen chrome fixtures and large format tile flooring.

Every home at Origin has extensive light-filled living areas with sustainable wood flooring and impressive views, but not every home is the same. Origin embraces each resident’s lifestyle with its extensive conveniences, options and upgrades. Residents can select from two interior finish packages in Pearl and Asher and may upgrade their apartments to include ample walk-in closets, floor-to-ceiling windows, patios and terraces, kitchen islands and more!

Origin has dedicated three floors to a bespoke collection of amenities that inspire residents to live their best lives. With extensive work/life amenities, Origin features a fitness center with top-of-the-line equipment, a work lounge with individual study rooms, 24 hr concierge service, a rooftop pool with cabanas and a private clubroom, a rentable entertainment space with a fireplace, and a dog spa along with a rooftop dog park and multiple indoor and outdoor entertainment areas.

Ready to live in Origin? Visit originballston.com and schedule your tour.

For a limited time Origin is offering ONE MONTH FREE to select move-ins before March 21.

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This content was written and sponsored by The Keri Shull Team, Arlington’s top producing residential real estate team.

With their busy schedules of helping buyers and sellers get great prices on homes, our agents need the chance to blow off some steam — so why don’t you join them? They wanted to take some time today to show you two of our favorite places to have fun in the Ballston neighborhood of Arlington, Virginia.

Ballston is full of hidden gems and amazing spots for revelers of all ages, and we wanted to take the chance to talk about a couple of them today!

What’s your favorite place to go for fun in Ballston? Let us know in the comments below — we’d love to check it out!!

Are you interested in moving to Ballston, another neighborhood in Arlington, or anywhere else in D.C., Maryland, or Virginia? The Keri Shull Team can help make sure you get a great price for the perfect home!

If you want to learn more about how we can help you find AND WIN your dream home, contact The Keri Shull Team today!

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With snowflakes almost starting to fly, now might be a good time to provide a helpful tip for one way to avoid walking in the elements.

After much anticipation, the new Ballston Quarter pedestrian bridge opened in November. The snazzy, lighted bridge over Wilson Blvd links the second floor of the Ballston Quarter mall with the office complex and Metro station across the street, allowing people to get from one place to the other in climate-controlled comfort.

There’s no direct access from the Metro station to the office building, which means a brief walk outdoors. Also, it can be a little tricky to find on the first try. But don’t worry — we have a quick video guide on how to use the pedestrian bridge to get from the station to the mall.

Video by Jay Westcott 

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