Alexandria, VA

Get your cigar ready. After three months of being shut down, Two Nineteen Restaurant (219 King Street) is reopening its doors to the public at 4 p.m. today. The restaurant has undergone a renovation, too, thanks to receiving a Paycheck Protection Program loan back in April.

“It looks beautiful now,” Two Nineteen’s owner Patty Charoentra told ALXnow. “We’ve completely repainted the interior and repointed the brick. We also installed an air tap draft beer system, so your beer is going to be super cold.”

Live music remains on hold at the venue for now, but 80% of the restaurant’s staff have been rehired, tables have been set outside and the Basin Street Lounge is ready to accommodate cigar, cigarette and pipe smokers.

Charoentra and her husband Kelvin Eap, both immigrants from Thailand, have owned Two Nineteen since 2005. They employ 20 full and part-time employees, and their daughter Eliza is the manager.

“We missed our customers and we can’t wait to reopen,”Charoentra said. “A lot of regular customers come back to see me, and I wanted to come back strong. I can’t wait for them to see how much work we have done for Two Nineteen.”

Staff photo by James Cullum

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