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Jamaica House Set to Reopen in New Location Next Tuesday

Jamaica House Restaurant is a fast-casual restaurant near VCU’s Monroe Park Campus that has been serving traditional Jamaican cuisine to go in a fun atmosphere since 1994.

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A long-time restaurant serving authentic, scratch-made Jamaican cuisine in the VCU area for decades has moved down the block to a larger, more inviting space with more seating and an expanded menu. Jamaica House Restaurant, a staple of the Monroe Park Campus and Downtown Richmond since 1994, is reopening its doors Tuesday, September 8th.

The restaurant’s new 2,100-square-foot home at 416 W. Broad Street evokes the quaint charm and character of the original location, with major improvements including additional seating for up to 40 people, a larger takeout window, and a bar.

“Moving into this fantastic new space gave us a great opportunity to try some new things and expand our offerings a bit,” said Carana Ives, owner of Jamaica House. “Not only do we have more seating and an expanded kitchen, but we’re now able to add some customer favorites from Carena’s Jamaican Grille and try a few new traditional dishes as well. It was also a chance to create a long-overdue, comfortable dine-in experience that we really lacked in our former home.”

The interior of the space, designed by Richmond-based Campfire & Co., is bright, fun, and fresh with colorful textures and tones as well as island-inspired fixtures and upholstery, giving the restaurant a relaxed, approachable feel. “We were excited to help Carena and (son) Randolph create a new space and updated brand for Jamaica House that transports guests and celebrates Jamaican culture and the art of authentic, slow cooking,” said Lauren Stewart, Co-Founder, Campfire & Co.

Staples of Jamaica House, including the restaurant’s famous curry goat, jerk chicken, and oxtails, remain, alongside new menu additions inspired by Ives’ sister restaurant, Carena’s Jamaican Grille in South Richmond. New dishes include Appleton Rum-glazed baby back ribs, fresh salmon in a creamy coconut sauce, spicy jerk wings, and a chickpea and butternut squash bowl over fresh spinach and rice.

The general contractor on the project was Chris Pollack with UrbanCore Construction, and Sarah McInerney with Walter Parks Architects led the design. Boulevard Creative developed the restaurant’s new website, which will launch later this week.

Jamaica House is located at 416 W. Broad Street and is open every day from 11:00 AM until 9:00 PM. Online ordering and curbside takeout are available.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Events

Glen Allen mosque hoping to clear misconception about Islam at community open house this Saturday

“Muslims are opening the doors of our Mosques to our neighbors to provide them with an opportunity to get to know the Muslim community,” said GainPeace Director Dr. Sabeel Ahmed.

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On Saturday, December 4th, a Glen Allen mosque is inviting the community to a Mosque Open House. The purpose of the open house, says the Islamic Center of Richmond, is to address the increase in Islamophobia and to provide an opportunity for the neighbors to get acquainted with Muslim neighbors while at the same time deepening their understanding of the Islamic faith.

Two Muslim organizations are hosting this event: GainPeace and the Islamic center of Richmond Mosque. GainPeace is a national Islamic organization that conducts several educational forums and provides literature and opportunity for our fellow Americans to learn the facts about Islam.

“Muslims are opening the doors of our Mosques to our neighbors to provide them with an opportunity to get to know the Muslim community,” said GainPeace Director Dr. Sabeel Ahmed. “The current political climate has created an environment of mistrust, and also a curiosity in public to learn more about Islam and these Mosque Open Houses will educate them and take any questions on Islam.” Dr. Ahmed added, “The open house will also create opportunities to form alliances between the Muslim-Americans and their neighbors to better the community.”

The Mosques will serve lunch to guests.

The Islamic Center of Richmond is located at 8481 Hungary Road in Glen Allen. The event takes place Saturday, December 4, 11 am to 1:30 pm.

What to expect:

  • The social hour includes Henna design for ladies, face painting for kids, Islamic Artifacts table, Ask Imam Booth, try the Hijab booth, and exclusive VR (Virtual Reality) glasses to let viewers experience Islam in 360 degrees
  • Break for lunch
  • Presentation on Islam, common misconceptions, working together with other faiths, etc.
  • Question and answer session
  • Tour of the Mosque, witnessing of the Congregation Prayer, and gift-giving to guests

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Events

Hermitage Richmond hosting second annual “Illumination on the Lawn”

From December 4 until January 6, the grounds at Hermitage Richmond will be transformed into a spectacular winter wonderland display of holiday lights and reindeer from 6-9 p.m. each evening. This ongoing event is free to attend for the whole family — including pets.

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This holiday season, Hermitage Richmond is inviting the community to bundle up and enjoy some festive fun and holiday magic.

The senior living community in Ginter Park is inviting the community to join them for their second annual holiday tradition at Hermitage Richmond — Illumination on the Lawn.

From December 4 until January 6, the grounds at Hermitage Richmond will be transformed into a spectacular winter wonderland display of holiday lights and reindeer from 6-9 p.m. each evening. This ongoing event is free to attend for the whole family — including pets.

“We are thrilled to once again bring to life our new Richmond annual tradition, and look forward to bringing the joy of the holidays to everyone with our festive light displays,” said Amy Chapman, Executive Director of Hermitage Richmond. “There are brand new displays this year that are sure to amaze our residents, as well as new and returning guests of all ages!”

Hermitage Richmond is located at 1600 Westwood Ave., Richmond, VA 23227.

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Downtown

Island Shrimp Co. opening in former Conch Republic space at Rocketts Landing next March

A second location of the HOUSEpitality Family concept is set to open this spring.

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Local restaurant group HOUSEpitality Family announced that it will open its second Island Shrimp Co. location at Rocketts Landing in March 2022.

The restaurant will be located next to The Boathouse at Rocketts Landing in the space that was formerly occupied by Conch Republic. The first Island Shrimp Co., also known as ISCo, location opened in 2019 at Chesterfield Towne Center. The new location will offer the flavors of the tropics for a city-inspired port-to-plate experience in an artistic seaside environment.

“We’re looking forward to adding another HOUSEpitality Family concept at Rocketts Landing, an area that has been special to us since we opened The Boathouse at Rocketts Landing in 2009,” said Kevin Healy, owner of HOUSEpitality Family restaurant group. “At the time, The Boathouse was the first restaurant to utilize the riverfront location along the James and our whole team is excited that the second location of Island Shrimp Co. will be right on the water.”

Menu items will include favorites like garlic shrimp, lumpia and lobster and shrimp fried rice and the drink menu will feature beach-inspired cocktails like the hurricane, painkiller, mojito and the ISCO-original Blue Typhoon.

Island Shrimp Co. at Rocketts Landing will offer an ambiance that marries city and seaside. Like the original Island Shrimp Co., HOUSEpitality Family considered the full dining experience and will incorporate several Instagram-ready photo opportunities when developing the space.

Island Shrimp Co. is currently hiring for a number of positions, including lead cooks, line cooks, servers, bartenders, hosts, dishwashers and support staff. Those interested in applying for a position at the new Island Shrimp Co. can visit www.growwiththefam.com.

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