Smoking Banned in Virginia Bars -- By Choice
Capitol City Brewing Company and Clarendon Grill were among the popular bars that voluntarily banned smoking last summer. Velocity Five, the best sports bar to open in Northern Virginia in years, was nonsmoking before it served its first customer.
Now two more names are joining their ranks. Mango Mike's, the Alexandria beach bar where rum drinks flow and pina coladas are served in coconut husks, will go smoke-free on Valentine's Day. "We've been talking about it for the last two years," says owner "Mango" Mike Anderson. "We hoped the state legislature would push a bill through, but we just decided it was time for a change."
Anderson says that it's a polarizing topic, noting that "about 80 percent of the bar customers smoke. They're not happy about it, and there's grumbling, but most of them say 'Well, we've seen it coming.'"
For now, customers who want a cigarette can step out onto the tropical-themed Boat Bar on the patio, but once the weather warms up, Anderson says he might make the outdoor areas smoke-free too.
And Eventide, the new bar and restaurant from the team behind Clarendon's Clarendon Ballroom, will follow its sister establishment and ban smoking when it opens later this month. (The only exception will be at the bar on the rooftop deck, though smoking won't be allowed at the roof's dinner tables.)
With this trend in mind, we've put together a list of our favorite smoke-free Virginia bars and restaurants. Have your own picks? Add them in the comments. (Smokers, we haven't forgotten about you - here's the list of D.C. bars that welcome cigars and cigarettes.)
| February 3, 2009; 11:56 AM ET
Categories: Bars and Clubs
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