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by ARLnow.com — June 29, 2016 at 9:00 am 0

Cupid's Garden Sculpture in Rosslyn

Bracing for the Next Two Metro Surges — There will be no Metrorail service at the National Airport station during the next two Metrorail maintenance surge projects, from July 5 to July 18. Blue and Yellow line riders can expect major service impacts and should consider alternative means of commuting, from biking to Uber to taking the bus. The new Metroway Bus Rapid Transit line from Alexandria to Crystal City will be free during the two surges. [Washington Post, NBC Washington, Twitter, WMATA]

Tributes to Cafe Asia — As ARLnow.com first reported, today is expected to be the last day in business for Cafe Asia in Rosslyn. The restaurant was a go-to lunch, after work and event spot for some of Rosslyn’s media and political types, who have been posting memories of Cafe Asia on Twitter and elsewhere. [Washington Business Journal, Twitter, Twitter]

Garvey Profiled in Weekly Standard — Arlington County Board Chair Libby Garvey, who defeated challenger Erik Gutshall in the Democratic primary two weeks ago, has been profiled by the conservative political magazine the Weekly Standard. “From her fight for fiscal conservatism over a costly streetcar plan to her endorsement of Republican-turned-independent John Vihstadt (who eventually became a fellow Board member), it is no wonder that some of her fellow liberals are worried about the county’s direction,” the magazine wrote. [Weekly Standard]

Photo by Jackie Friedman

by ARLnow.com — June 28, 2016 at 1:15 pm 0

Venerable Rosslyn restaurant and happy hour spot Cafe Asia (1550 Wilson Blvd) is closing its doors this week.

The pan-Asian restaurant will serve its last customers Wednesday night, according to a restaurant manager. No special events are planned for the closing, we’re told.

The manager said that Cafe Asia’s owners declined to renew its lease, after some 15 years in business. The owners will be “taking a break” before deciding what to do next, she said.

Cafe Asia serves dishes from Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, China, Japan and Vietnam in a large, airy dining space that includes a sizable bar and separate event space.

“It’s a shame,” a customer told ARLnow.com. “It was an affordable go to place for sushi and the staff was great.”

Hat tip to @Colknewman

by ARLnow.com — June 14, 2016 at 9:00 am 0

American flag on the Fairlington bridge over I-395

County Board Primary Voting Today — Arlington residents are heading to the polls today to vote in the Democratic County Board primary, choosing between incumbent Libby Garvey and challenger Erik Gutshall. Polls close at 7 p.m. [Arlington County]

Shelves Stocked at New Whole Foods — Some shelves are already stocked at the new Pentagon City Whole Foods. The store is set to open on Wednesday, June 29. [Twitter]

More Security at Local Gay Bar — Freddie’s Beach Bar in Crystal City has tightened its security, banned backpacks and is now searching purses in the wake of the mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando. [NBC Washington]

Art Therapy Group Shutting Down — The 296 Project, which provided art therapy for veterans with PTSD, is closing down. On June 25, the group will be hosting a big art supply giveaway at its Crystal City studio. [Facebook]

Local Jewelry and Fashion List — Washingtonian Magazine has released a list of what it says are “the best places to shop in Arlington for local art, custom jewelry, and discounted designer fashion.” [Washingtonian]

by Jackie Friedman — June 10, 2016 at 2:15 pm 0

The Panera Bread restaurant in Ballston has closed.

The Panera Bread was located in Ballston Common Mall and was previously expected to stay open during renovations before reopening as Ballston Quarter.

The store’s signage is down and the inside is vacant. The location also no longer shows up on Panera Bread’s website.

When calling the store’s phone number, an automated message states that the Ballston location has permanently closed and that their “customer’s business has been appreciated.”

No word yet on what ultimately led to the permanent closure of the store.

by ARLnow.com — June 6, 2016 at 4:45 pm 0

Bank of Georgetown (photo via Google Maps)

The Bank of Georgetown branch at 2300 Wilson Blvd in Courthouse has closed permanently.

The branch closed Friday afternoon, as the $269 million acquisition of Bank of Georgetown by competitor United Bank was completed. It is being “consolidated” into the United Bank branch at 2930 Wilson Blvd in Clarendon.

The closed bank branch was located on the ground floor of the Navy League building, near the Five Guys burger restaurant.

Photo via Google Maps

by ARLnow.com — June 6, 2016 at 1:00 pm 0

NKD Pizza, the pizza chain formerly known as Naked Pizza, has closed its Pentagon City location.

The pizzeria, in the Pentagon Row shopping center at 1101 S. Joyce Street, opened in July 2011, touting unique pizza recipes and all-natural ingredients. Subsequently a Ballston/Virginia Square location opened in 2012.

Today, the Pentagon City’s location was closed, with brown paper covering the windows and a sign posted on the door.

“Thank you so much for your past patronage — we’ve enjoyed serving you at this location for the past five years!” the sign read. “We would love to continue serving you as a carryout guest at our Ballston location.”

The Ballston NKD Pizza store is located at 933 N. Quincy Street.

by ARLnow.com — April 25, 2016 at 10:30 am 0

Doctor Delivery logoFood delivery service Doctor Delivery has shut down.

A short, plain text message — “Dr. Delivery has ceased operations” — is now the only thing displayed on the company’s website. The website was still functional as recently as a week ago.

Based in Falls Church, Doctor Delivery launched in 2001 and served Arlington, D.C., Alexandria and part of Fairfax County, offering to deliver food from some 125 local restaurants.

The company also offered custom courier services — it would pick up your dry cleaning or bring you items from 7-Eleven, for instance. Orders could be placed online or via phone.

Lately Doctor Delivery has faced stiff competition from well-funded tech companies that have offered smartphone app-based food ordering services. Yet another delivery service, UberEATS, from the ride hailing company Uber, launched in Arlington late last week.

by ARLnow.com — April 15, 2016 at 11:00 am 0

Rosenthal Arlington Mazda, at 750 N. Glebe Road in Ballston, is holding a store closing sale.

That’s according to an email sent by the dealership to customers, announcing its “last sales event,” which ends after the end of the month.

Rosenthal Arlington Mazda closing sale graphicAn employee confirmed to ARLnow.com this morning that the dealership is, in fact, closing to customers after April 30.

“A few of us will be around to wind down the accounting operations for a few more days,” he said.

The dealership is set to be redeveloped into a 483 unit apartment building, which will include a new grocery store that may or may not be a Whole Foods Market.

“The applicant proposes to… redevelop the Rosenthal Mazda dealership and adjacent parcels with a 12-story building consisting of 483 dwelling units and 68,185 square feet of retail including a new grocery store and a car rental business,” notes Arlington County’s page on the project. “Building heights will range from 155 feet at Wilson Boulevard and N. Glebe Road, tapering to the south and west to 53 feet along N. Tazewell Street.”

Mary Beth Avedesian, a senior vice president for developer B.F. Saul Company, said that so far no lease has been signed for the grocery store space.

“We have not yet signed a lease with an anchor tenant, but there are a number of prospects who are very interested in our project,” she said.

The county’s Site Plan Review Committee is scheduled to discuss the project on Monday. It’s tentatively scheduled to be considered by the County Board in June.

by ARLnow.com — April 15, 2016 at 10:00 am 0

Rock Bottom Brewing in Ballston (photo via Google Maps)Rock Bottom Brewery in Ballston is closing next month, we’re told.

An employee told ARLnow.com that the brewpub’s last day will be Sunday, May 8 — Mother’s Day. The restaurant’s corporate office could not be reached for official confirmation.

Rock Bottom is located in Ballston Common Mall, which will soon undergo two years of renovations before reopening as Ballston Quarter. A spokesman for mall owner Forest City declined comment, referring us to Rock Bottom.

Hat tip to @dcvelobrew. Photo via Google Maps.

by ARLnow.com — April 12, 2016 at 2:45 pm 0

NOVA Firearms in Falls Church (courtesy photo)NOVA Firearms, the gun store that was once hoping to open in Cherrydale, has closed its location in Falls Church, in part due to security concerns.

The store, which has an existing location in McLean, had its lease in Cherrydale canceled last summer after a community outcry. In February, it opened an “annex” location in Falls Church, citing “high demand [in] that location for transfers and firearm purchases.”

On Friday, just two months after opening, the store announced that it would be closing.

“Regretfully due to recent neighborhood events and our desire to act in the best interests of the community in partnership with Falls Church Police, we have decided to close up this store in order to look for a more ideal location,” the company said.

A store manager explained that there were security concerns with the Falls Church location that came to light after its opening.

“Conversations in partnership with the Falls Church police department and the ATF revealed a rash of burglaries and firearms thefts in the area, and the security of the building at 909 West Broad Street, came into question,” wrote Erik Lorentzen. “In the interest of doing what was best for the community and preventing an unsavory situation with stolen firearms on the streets, we chose to close the store and move the inventory back to the more secure McLean location.”

(The McLean location was burglarized in December.)

Lorentzen said there were also “some business related reasons” for the closure.

“The Falls Church annex… was always a bit of an experiment to see if it was financially viable,” he said. “Over the two months the store was there, no such market revealed itself to us, and the store barely covered its operating expenses.”

Moving forward, NOVA Firearms says it’s focused on “building better relationships with the communities where we reside.”

“Falls Church was actually very welcoming and we had what we felt was a very good relationship with our neighbors,” said Lorentzen. “We were never protested and never received any pressure from anyone pushing us to close down. We simply looked at the situations… and made the call ourselves that this was the right and moral thing to do. We greatly appreciate all the support we have received from our customer base, and look forward to seeing everyone at the McLean store, which isn’t going anywhere.”

NOVA Firearms is not to be confused with NOVA Armory, the gun store that is now open in Arlington’s Lyon Park neighborhood despite vocal opposition from some in the community.

Courtesy photo

by ARLnow.com — April 4, 2016 at 4:55 pm 0

The Greene Turtle in BallstonToday is the last day in business for the Greene Turtle Sports Bar & Grille in Ballston.

The restaurant, at 900 N. Glebe Road, will close permanently at its normal midnight closing time tonight, a tipster told us and an employee confirmed.

The Greene Turtle first opened in January 2012, in an expansive space featuring more than 50 TVs on the walls and in booths. It struggled to attract enough customers to make it viable, we’re told, owing at least in part to its location across busy Glebe Road from Ballston’s main business district.

“Greene Turtle has been starving from the moment it opened,” an insider told us last month. “That side of Glebe is just brutal.”

Another tipster told ARLnow.com last month that the Greene Turtle would be replaced by an Applebee’s restaurant later this summer. An employee today said that was true. So far, the company has not confirmed the news.

Restaurant staff was informed of the closure on Friday, we hear.

by ARLnow.com — March 8, 2016 at 4:35 pm 0

Republic Kitchen & Bar (801 N. Quincy Street) has been shuttered for the past several days and may be closed for good.

The Ballston eatery has a sign in the window that reads “We close [sic] to make some changes today, sorry for your inconvenience.” Its phone number, meanwhile, has been disconnected, as has its website. The restaurant’s Facebook page was last updated Jan. 16.

Another sign in the window — this one handwritten — states that the local backgammon club has moved its meeting to Carpool, at least temporarily.

Republic opened in 2014, replacing the former Leek American Bistro, which replaced the former Thai Terrace.

Republic served “modern comfort food” and took on something of a lounge atmosphere at night. After it opened, Republic’s owner bragged that the food was so fresh the microwave in the kitchen wasn’t even plugged in and was being used for storage.

by ARLnow.com — March 1, 2016 at 3:55 pm 0

(Updated at 4:45 p.m.) Secret Chopsticks in Rosslyn has closed after only three months in business.

The upscale Chinese restaurant opened in December November, after various issues delayed its opening by a year and a half. The delayed opening wasn’t the restaurant’s only problem — it had an inconspicuous lead-up to its opening, garnered mediocre reviews from diners and its general manager reportedly left in December, shortly after it opened.

Last month, a Virginia ABC permit application was filed for a new restaurant called “Anjorie,” listing Secret Chopsticks’ address and phone number. An employee reached by ARLnow.com last week declined to comment and referred us to a manager, who we were unable to reach despite multiple attempts.

Few details are available about Anjorie, except the name of the company behind it — Vandor Management LLC — and the fact that it plans to serve wine, beer and cocktails, and seat more than 150.

by ARLnow.com — February 23, 2016 at 1:45 pm 0

A new ramen noodle eatery is coming to Columbia Pike.

Maruko Sushi, at 2915 Columbia Pike, has closed and in its place is coming “Boru Ramen.” Interior work appears to be underway at the restaurant, though thus far there are few details about Boru other than a small “coming soon” sign on the door.

“Maruko Sushi Business is Closed,” says the old restaurant’s website. “New Ramen Noodle Restaurant will come soon, many thanks for your support over past years.”

Maruko’s owner has not responded to an email inquiry from ARLnow.com.

The former restaurant had been in business for some 35 years on the Pike. It was renamed Maruko after an ownership change in 2010. It was previously known at Matuba Japanese Restaurant.

Hat tip to @Dorchester 2040 and @lerchebomb

by ARLnow.com — February 9, 2016 at 10:00 am 0

El Rancho Peruvian Chicken, at 3610 Columbia Pike, appears to have closed.

A neighboring business owner told ARLnow.com that the restaurant closed a couple of weeks ago and has not reopened since. Inside the eatery around noon yesterday, the doors were locked and chairs placed on top of the tables.

No explanation was given for the restaurant’s closure and no signs announcing the closure were posted on the windows at the time of ARLnow.com’s visit.

El Rancho has had its share of problems over the years — there were at least two notable fires there since 2012.

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