Business Ins and Outs


Georgetown Business Association Welcomes New President, Veep

With the resignation of its president, Charles Camp, the Georgetown Business Association’s board of directors voted in a new president and vice president July 15, and then gathered at Dog Tag Bakery for its monthly reception.
The new GBA president is Sonya Bernhardt, formerly its vice president. Bernhardt is the CEO of Georgetown Media Group, which publishes The Georgetowner Newspaper and The Downtowner Newspaper.

The GBA vice president is Hope Solomon, who works at the Overseas Private Investment Corporation and previously worked with the U.S. Senate Sergeant at Arms. Solomon also is involved with the family business on P Street, Wedding Creations & Anthony’s Tuxedos.

“I wish Sonya and Hope and the GBA, of which I remain a corporate member, all the best in the future,” former GBA president Charles Camp told The Georgetowner Newspaper. Camp heads the Law Offices of Charles H. Camp, P.C., located on Thomas Jefferson Street, NW.

Meghan Ogilvie, chief operating officer of Dog Tag Bakery, which opened a little more than six months ago, thanked the GBA for its award of “New Business of the Year.” Ogilvie spoke about the bakery’s commitment to educate veterans on how to run a business, besides learning how to bake and make soup and sandwiches. The program runs through Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Education. The Dog Tag nonprofit on Grace Street was co-founded by Rev. Rick Curry, S.J., and Connie Milstein, both of whom live in Georgetown.

In: West End Cinema Re-opens as Landmark Theatre

West End Cinema, the independent movie theater at 23rd and M streets NW that closed March 31 after four years of operation, reopened July 17 as part of Landmark Theatres.

Headquartered in Los Angeles, Landmark Theatres is known for showing documentaries, independent and foreign films, and operates 50 theaters — 229 screens in 21 markets — across the U.S. Its first spot in D.C. was E Street Cinema at 555 11th St. NW in Penn Quarter, and it also operates Bethesda Row Cinema. In 2016, Landmark’s footprint in D.C. will expand with new screens in the old Atlantic Plumbing building at 8th and V streets NW later this year, and at the Capitol Point project at New York Avenue and N Street NE, one block from the NoMa/Gallaudet U Metro station.

Previously known as the Inner Circle triplex, before Josh Levin revived the place as West End Cinema, the new theater in the West End neighborhood will have two screens, and its lobby service will include alcoholic beverages.
Landmark President Ted Mundorff said that the new venue will “bring even more films and events to the Dupont Circle, Foggy Bottom and Georgetown neighborhoods.”

In: Baco Juice & Taco Bar

Baco Juice & Taco Bar is coming to 1614 Wisconsin Ave. NW. Owner Christopher Luceri promises healthful juices and smoothies as well as tacos, burritos and breakfast foods with a Mexican twist. He also wants to use the front of the property for a patio and outdoor seating, as the entrance is set back from the street. Baco’s other business location is in Pennsylvania.

OUT: Bandolero Closes After 3-Year Run

Bandolero, the Mexican restaurant at 3241 M St. NW, closed July 20 after opening three years to great fanfare under the direction of celebrity chef Mike Isabella. Not much later, Isabella left Bandolero and continued his work at Graffiato, Kapnos, G Sandwich Shop and other restaurants. He was succeeded by chef Tony Starr, who has worked at Zaytinya, Neyla and Georgia Brown’s. The previous restaurant in that space was the well-regarded Hook. Owners Jonathan and Bethany Umbel left this message for fans: “Dear friends, neighbors, and customers, Bandolero is officially closed. We’d like to thank all of our loyal patrons who have come to Bando and supported us over the past few years. It has been an amazing three years serving everyone! Gracias por su apollo, hasta que nos encontremos de nuevo. Sigan comiendo TACOS y bebiendo TEQUILA.” [Translation: Thanks for your support. Until we meet again, keep eating tacos and drinking tequila.]

OUT: Sandro Not Coming to 33rd & M

Sandro, a Paris-based fashion label that sells women’s and men’s clothing, will not be opening its first D.C. store in Georgetown, as previously reported. It has pulled out of its lease for the building at 33rd and M Street NW. The corner spot, across from Georgetown Cupcake, previously housed Red Fire Grill Kabob, which closed in 2013. Before closing four years ago, the Indian restaurant Aditi was there for 23 years. The building has stood empty for two years.

Malmaison Celebrates 2 Years on the Waterfront

Malmaison, the French restaurant at 34th and K Street (Water Street) founded by the Popal Group, will celebrate its second anniversary with “Fete de Malmaison” on Thursday, July 23. The restaurateurs promise “an evening full of music, dancing and champagne” — all with a close-up view of Key Bridge and the Potomac River.

Georgetown Exxon Safe for Now
A pending sale of the land on which the Georgetown Exxon sits, at Wisconsin Avenue and Q Street NW, has fallen though, giving residents more time for one of the few service stations in Georgetown.

The land, owned by D.C. gas station king, Joe Mamo, remains for sale. Still, the town’s gas stations are in their last years: Key Bridge Exxon at 3601 M St. NW is slated to be swept aside for condos. Across from the Four Seasons, the Valero property at 2715 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, is also set for condos. Both sites are owned by EastBanc Inc. Georgetown Shell, across the street from the Georgetown Exxon, is the only station not under threat of redevelopment.

Spa Director Lance Etchison Dies

Lance Etchison, who worked at BlueMercury from 1999 t0 2014 and was its spa director, died July 14 at the age of 45 at his Logan Circle home. The aesthetician was known for his facials and make-up and skin-care talent. “Etchison, according to close friends, died one day after undergoing cosmetic surgery,” reported the Washington Post. Most recently, Etchison worked at Sherber Rad, a skin-care and plastic surgery center, and volunteered with Canine Companions for Independence.


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