Alexandria, VA

Alexandria Restaurant Partners on Wednesday will shutter all of its businesses and stop work for 450 of its employees at all of its locations in the city, with the exception of Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap.

The closure is in response to Governor Ralph Northam’s recommendation on Tuesday that establishments within the state enforce 10-person gathering standards, which effectively shuts down indoor dining.

“Restaurants are going to face significant, devastating losses,” Scott Shaw, a partner with ARP told ALXnow. “It closes our business. We will reopen when we can, but this is going to be a significant financial hit. “Right now our top concern is our employees, and we are heartsick at not being able to help them more, but with no revenue coming in it’s not possible.”

Shaw added, “It’s a real hardship for them. We’re doing everything we can do help them with benefits and expedited unemployment insurance.”

ARP closed Palette 22 in Shirlington and The Majestic in Old Town this morning and planned to have limited service at its other locations until Northam made his recommendation.

ARP will subsequently also close Mia’s Italian Kitchen, Vola’s Dockside Grill, and Theismann’s Restaurant and Bar until further notice. The company is asking that customers buy gift cards for the restaurants, and 20% of the proceeds will go to an employee relief fund.

Alexandria Mayor Justin Wilson on Tuesday, also issued guidance to the city manager’s office to consider suspending the city’s dining tax collection during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To our loyal customers, Please know that your health and safety are our number one priority during these trying times. …

Posted by Lena's Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap on Friday, March 13, 2020

So far, the Homegrown Restaurant Group has only closed one of its locations – Whisky & Oyster. The company, which includes Pork Barrel BBQ, Holy Cow Del Ray, The Sushi Bar, Sweet Fire Donna’s and Tequila & Taco is still open for business.

“We are encouraging social distancing in our restaurants and complying with the 10 person maximum,” said Bill Blackburn, a partner with the Homegrown Restaurant Group. “We encourage customers to order via our websites and pickup at our curbside tents in front of the restaurants.”

There are now 67 cases of the COVID-19 coronavirus in Virginia, including two presumptive positive cases in Alexandria.

‪The latest order from Governor of Virginia to enforce social distancing as a means to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is now in place.‬‪10 people or fewer in restaurants, fitness centers and theaters‬

Posted by Justin Wilson on Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Photo via Mia’s Italian Kitchen/Facebook

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