Alexandria, Virginia, renowned forTravel + LeisureIn betweenThe best travel destinations of 2023and with an evolving waterfront promenade just minutes from Washington, D.C. away, offers many new and exciting activities this year. A new luxury hotel in the Old Town and an influx of neighborhood late-night eateries complement retail trends like wellness and sustainability. Immersive black history and public art experiences draw visitors to the coast and beyond. Read on for information on a new brewery, a James Beard-nominated chef, and more.
New to Alexandria Waterfront
Riverside Black history and artistic experiences
Photo: Jones Point Park
This year, the Alexandria Boardwalk evolves with two new experiences that highlight untold stories of Alexandria's black history and culture.
In February 2023 theNew south coast routeof self-managementAlexandria African American Heritage TrailPremieres with almost twice as many stops as thatnorth route. The southern route, represented in the form ofRota do Sul Online-StoryMap, highlights the people, places, and neighborhoods from the founding of Alexandria through the 20th century.ºCentury and was developed as a voluntary community initiative with support from the Alexandria Office of Historic. In the summer of 2023, appropriate signage and markings will be installed along the route.
In the photo: representation “Two boxes of oranges and Admonia Jackson”; Photo Credit: Studio Cooke John
End of March,Two boxes of oranges and Admonia Jacksonwill open as the fifth temporary public art installation on the Old Town Alexandria waterfront and will be on view as part of the City of Alexandria Collection through November 2023.Site View: New views in the old townSeries. Created by award-winning artist Nina Cooke John ofJohn Cooke Studio, the installation is inspired by the ships discovered off the coast of Alexandria in 2015 and 2018 and the many layers of history that are not easily distinguished. The installation forms the hull of an abstract ship with vertical steel elements that rise and bend, in relation to the curvature of the hull structure. Visitors can linger in the room and imagine a time in Alexandria's history when ships carried not only cargoes like tobacco, molasses, rum, and limes, but also slaves traded as part of the transatlantic and domestic slave trade. The facility's blue exterior is contrasted by an orange interior that displays text from ship manifests listing items such as herring, coconuts, and gin, and names and descriptions of enslaved people such as "Jane Tailor, 5' 2." Also listed are "two boxes of oranges" and "Admonia Jackson".
Renovated waterfront restaurant and new program in Old Town North
Pictured from left to right: Jula's on the Potomac, courtesy image; Channel Center Programming
An even more magical river view is in the works as a waterfront restaurant in Old Town NorthCafé 44will undergo a 7,500-square-foot expansion at Canal Center and rebrand as"Jula's on the Potomac"It is named after the owner's great-grandmother and namesake. The upgrade includes a state-of-the-art commercial kitchen, top-of-the-line raw food and deli bar, center bar with views of the Capitol and Potomac, private dining room, social media corner and more. The current and expanded facility is expected to be completed in the fall of 2023. This restaurant expansion will be complemented by the continuation of new events and programming beginning in 2022 at Canal Center.
Extended pedestrian mall on King Street
In the photo: pedestrianized King Street; Photo Credit: City of Alexandria
Just steps from these new experiences along the Alexandria waterfront, residents and visitors alike can enjoy theExtension of the permanent pedestrian mall on King Street, connecting Block 0 with Block 100 on King Street.Meanwhile, the city's parklet program was recently made permanent, allowing streets and outdoor commercial spaces to thrive in 2023 and beyond.
Visitors looking to explore the area will find Alexandria the perfect base for an afternoon visit to Washington, D.C. es, by water taxi, metro or bicycle, includingPierfase 2on the southwestern edge of the district.
From left to right: Alexandria Black History Museum, Freedom House Museum
oAlexandria Black History Museumwill reopen in 2023 with a new exhibition,Preserving Their Names: The Black Life Memoir Collection, featuring digital images and artifacts donated by the community and the DMV following the murder of George Floyd. the updatedBefore the ghosts are swept awayWith Sherry Zvare Sanabria's paintings of African-American places, the exhibition emphasizes the personality of enslaved people and focuses them on the places where they lived and worked. The new children's area offers thought-provoking activities appropriate to the age of the little ones. You can now book a visit toFreedom House Museum, a National Historic Landmark that reopened in spring 2022 with three new exhibits showcasing Alexandria's black history and the black experience in America.
In February 2023 the 100ºbirthday ofGeorge Washington Masonic National Memorialcontains a cornerstonerededication ceremony, an event for Freemasons and the public after George Washington's birthday parade on February 20, 2023.
Visitors can view the museum's raid on D.C. expand where you will find the recently openedNational Air and Space Museum,with eight new and renovated galleries and new museums opening in late 2022, including the captivatingMuseum of Illusionsand a DC location ofMuseo Rubell, featuring a display of Marvin Gaye-inspired art and more.
Italian and pizza
Photo by: Italian Thompson
An influx of Italian restaurants includes the openingItalian thompsonon King Street in January 2023. The second location of the acclaimed family-owned Falls Church project features the olive oil cake that earned pastry chef and co-owner Katherine Thompson a James Beard nomination, expanded pasta menus, and seafood and an Infused with Middle Eastern flavors courtesy of chef Lucy Dakwar's Palestinian roots. For more Italian dishes seemichael is in king, a new Old Town venture coming fall 2022 from the teams behind the former Magnolia's in King and Michael's Little Italy. Plus, get a slice at new pizzerias likeFrank Pepe Neapolitan Pizzeriano West End of Alexandria,delivery in slicesthis is king e streetandys pizzain Old Town and soon at the new Atlas Brew Works location in Carlyle.
Photo: 1799 Prime Steak and Seafood
Date night options have mushroomed with enticing new openings like, a sophisticated yet cozy Old Town steakhouse owned by Jahmond Quander, a member of one of the oldest documented African-American families and co-founded by chef Sonny Tena. Play sommelier in Old Town, too, with a winemaker-focused wine listVirginias Darling Winery, a new "dinner" at Mae's Market and Café, or go toRailbird Kitchen, a small plates, chicken sandwiches and cocktails concept designed to complement its sister business, Captain Gregory's. Settle in to Alexandria's West End for ceviche and Peruvian specialtiesLima bistro bar and restaurantor bring your appetite for traditional Ethiopian food and live musicWe went to the Ethiopian restaurant..
coffees and brunches
Foto: St. Elmo's Coffee Pub
New coffee and brunch destinations include a thirdCafé Pub St. ElmoFairlington Center location with an impressive outdoor mural. opening on King Street in 2023,Lily's Chocolate y CaféIt is the second location of the Viennese Iraqi candy specialty shop Lokma. pay someone a visitDistrict Cookie Companyin Arlandria for savory sandwiches and sweet cookie doughnuts and a popular regional franchise on King StreetTatte Bakery and Cafe.
Beer, wine and mocktails
Image and photo credits from left to right: Atlas Brew Works and Umbrella Dry Drinks
Among the new openings are many creative drinks. D.C.-basedAtlas Brewerysoon to be bringing your craft beer to Carlyle Crossing, with a brewery, taproom, and gourmet dining.andys pizza. Meanwhile, Carlylelost boy ciderrecently launched a women-led brand,lost girl came. Taste non-alcoholic drinks worth covetingPort City Brewing Companynew line of hop-infused sparkling water, HOPWELL or mocktails fromumbrella dry drinksBottle shop in the old town.
In the photo: Mrs. Moxie
Alexandria's wellness scene is expanding with recent openings likeFrau Moon Shop moxie, a women's health and wellness boutique in Old Town whose founder, Ann Ile, worked as a registered nurse for several decades.Restore Hyper Wellbeingin Alexandria's West End offers a variety of beneficial treatments to reduce inflammation, improve sleep and more. Activate with the rental ofunlimited cyclingmiElectric bikes' new outpost or class inPIES Fitness-Yoga, who moved to Prince Street in 2022. Refresh your home after a tripPflanzenHausin Old Town North for some Mexican skin care (and some food).Cocoin Arlandria
sustainable and used
Foto: Crooked Beat Records
Buyers can source second-hand products in a sustainable wayJorge Vintage and design, a summer 2022 addition to Del Ray, specializing in mid-century bar furniture and products. Scheduled to open around 2023,batsman recordswill migrate from Old Town North to Del Ray's Mount Vernon Avenue. About,beginning of evolutionmoved its vintage market to Alexandria's West End in the summer of 2022.
Buying gifts is now easier in the city. Create a custom fragrance for a loved one belowSalacandle studio era, which opened spring 2022 on King Street, or shop for local artMade in ALXStationary location in Altstadt Nord, opened in summer 2022. New in Altstadt since spring 2022,Happy Place Gift Baroffers treats that cause smiles andyour hobby placeIt is an ideal destination for games, maps, collectibles and more.
In the photo: Representation of the Hotel AKA Alexandria; Photo credit: Hotel AKA Alexandria / Lissoni & Partners
In the spring of 2023,Hotel also known as Alexandriabrings a spectacular new addition to Old Town Alexandria, just steps from the city's burgeoning boutique scene and thriving waterfront, ushering in a new wave of luxury for the city. The Hotel AKA Alexandria will be one of world-renowned architect Piero Lissoni's first US hotel projects. A soaring staircase will be the focal point of the dramatic foyer, and the design will balance modern minimalism and sophisticated mid-century elements with sleek lines and dark tones. The hotel's 180 rooms and suites offer comfort. The Zen Garden Suites offer guests access to a peaceful garden, as well as a spacious living room and bedroom. The hotel's terraces overlook the neighborhood and the lush courtyard. Under the direction of Atelier AKA F+B, award-winning chef and restaurateur Greg Vernick (recognized by the James Beard Foundation for Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic) will oversee the concept and menus for the hotel's a.lounge, a sophisticated lounge with Menu with classic and signature cocktails along with renowned wines and light meals. Guests can also dine in style at a cafe with a modern breakfast and lunch menu. Other hotel amenities include a movie theater with a selected movie schedule and a patio, an outdoor area where guests can enjoy a cocktail from the bar or relax in the soothing waters of the fire pits.
New for 2022, Alexandria's largest hotel property, theHilton Alexandria Mark Centerin the West End, completed a multi-million dollar renovation that included the debut of the new bar and sushi market, the revitalization of the lobby and public areas, guest rooms, and meeting and event spaces.
The long-awaited subwayPotomac Yard StationScheduled to open in the first half of 2023, connecting residents and visitors to National Landing's evolving Potomac Yard neighborhood, a location that will become a major economic and educational attraction for years to come when Virginia Tech Innovation opens the campus in the fall of 2024 and Amazon headquarters in nearby Arlington. Scheduled for May 2023, theThe Yellow Line reopensfollowing bridge and tunnel repairs that had closed the line for almost nine months. In November 2022 the 3 billion dollarsExtension of the Silver Line to Dulles International Airportopened, connecting the nation's capital and northern Virginia to the international transportation hub of the Dulles Corridor.
Cover Photos: Left to Right: 1799 Prime Steak & Seafood, Virginia's Darling Wine Bar and AKA Alexandria Hotel Rendering; Photo Credit: Evan Michio for Visit Alexandria and Hotel AKA Alexandria / Lissoni & Partners