Arlington Cinema 'n' Drafthouse & NeighborsMay 24, 2015 , UPDATED Jan, 2020
Town Center: Columbia Heights
Drafthouse, Caspi & La Chiquita
The Arlington Cinema 'n' Drafthouse, La Chiquita Restaurant and the Caspi Restaurant are housed in an Art Deco styled building at the intersection of Columbia Pike and South Walter Reed. The building was completed in 1939 and the inema opened in 1940. The building has been classified as historic, its designation is essential, by the county.
Facing Columbia Pike2903: Cinema 'N' Drafthouse
2911: La Chiquita Restaurant:
2901: Caspi Restaurant
La Chiquita restaurant which serves Tortas Y and Tacos on the west side of the Drafthouse opened in June 2017 and replaced Old Arlington Grill. La Chiquita were originally in a food truck in the parking lot of the old Food Star at the Pike & George Mason. All businesses had to move from that lot in order to make way for the new Centro Complex which opened in October 2019. On the east side is Caspi, a mediterranean-themed restaurant which also faces Walter Reed.
Next to La Chiquita Restaurant is
2915 Boru Ramen
2919 - 2927 Bangkok 54 Restaurant & Market
The restaurant specializes in contemporary Thai Cuisine and the market specializes in Asian Groceries. Bundit Sookmee is the owner of both the restaurant and market.
Bangkok 54 Market
The market was closed for almost a year due to a fire on December 12, 2013. The rebuilding took nine months the market reopened September 2014. The restaurant was able to open the day after the fire.
Thank you for your comments. I did not know the name of the restaurant before. I found out that you were correct, it was Oriental Restaurant, it was a Chinese restaurant. I am not sure when it closed but it was still open at the beginning of this century, it might have been right up until Bangkok 54 opened which was on March 17, 2004.I worked in the C&P Telephone (now AT&T) in the 1970s. My co-workers and I often walked down S. Walter Reed and turned right onto Columbia Pike to have lunch or dinner at 'Oriental Restaurant' (I'm pretty sure that was it's actual name). It was one of the businesses in the same block as the theatre. It had great Asian food. I moved from Virginia in 1990 and the restaurant. Wondering if anyone can tell me how long it remained.Pat Baker
Facing Walter ReedArt Studio & Karate US
Also in the same building is Karate US and the Columbia Pike Art Studio (CPAS) which was founded in 1989 in what had been a retail space. It provides working spaces for painters, sculptors, printmakers, collage artists, illustrators, and photographers. Periodically the gallery is open to the public. Next the building becomes one and two story that houses Classique Image a Hair and Nail Salon and Cantina Mexicana.
Columbia Pike Artists Studios are only open to the public twice a year. On November 16 & 17 2019 they had Open Studios which was when I took these photographs.
Individual artists can be contacted for studio viewing by appointmentCPAS stated on Twitter
Garfield to Highland
Across Garfield from Bangkok 54 is the 7Eleven building on the side of the building are two restaurants El Puerto and ABI'S Azteca Grill. Next door to them is McDonalds.
3005: ABI'S Azteca Grill (All State Insure was also at this location and move out )
3007: El Puerto, Seafood
3045: Subway Sandwiches etc.
3045: Diaspora Services
3045: Ethio Cafe: Coffee House, Ethiopian Restaurant
3045: Title Max
The Highland Building which opened in 1961 at 3045 Columbia Pike, where the Pike intersects with South Highland. It is mainly an office building (40586 sq ft) that takes up most of the block behind the store fronts. Entrance to the offices are on Highland Street . Some of the businesses have included Doctors, Community Organizations and Schools.
Money LendersIt is rather depressing that there are two money lenders right across the road from each other. One is Title Max in the Highland Building and the other Loan Max (Loan Max not shown). Both companies give loans that are considered very problematic. The lender racks up unbelieveable amounts in interest, Lawmaker Seeks to Crack Down on ‘Predatory’ Lenders. One of the first busnesses that was in the location that now houses Title Max was Pier One which was there for many years.
The C.F. Burner’s Emporium established in 1904, was at the current location of the Arlington Cinema & Drafthouse. It became the M. Sher & Sons General Merchandise, in the 1920tys.
Charlie Sher can be seen (photo below) in front of the family’s Model T Ford Utility Truck along with his family.
In 1940 it became Arlington Theatre
The Arlington Theater, now known as the Arlington Cinema 'n' Draft House, was built by A. H. Brooks for owner Dr. Charles P. Munson. The building was designed by Fred Bishop of Richmond, Virginia.
The theater was originally known as the Arlington Recreation Center and included a movie theater, commercial stores, and a 24-lane bowling alley, which was located on the second and third floors above the theater... Charles Munson was responsible for plotting and subdividing part of the surrounding area to the north that is now known as Arlington Heights. The opening announcement in The Sun of August 16, 1940, emphasized the air conditioning system of the new theater and bowling alleyHistoric Resources Inventory
Mazagan Restaurant opened at the spot in May 8, 2014 after replacing the electronics store Venus Stereos & TVs. It was later replaced by Caspi Restaurant. The Cinema Marquee lists Trevor Noah among its attractions, his appearance at the Drafthouse was right before he had his became the host of the Daily Show.
La Chiquita replaced The Old Arlington Grill that had been at this spot of years.
Allstate Insurance moved to 3401 Columbia Pike sometime between 2016 - 2018, and was later replaced by Diaspora Services.