5 Restaurants in Alexandria are Changing the Sanitization Game

ALEXANDRIA, VA–Think NASA-level sanitizing tech has to be as big and bulky as a rocket? Think again. Here is a list of 5 Alexandria restaurants that are introducing Covid-killing sanitizing technology that is both functional and fashionable.

Mia’s Italian Kitchen and Vola’s Dockside Grill

The Alexandria Restaurant Partners (ARP) group is changing the cleaning game with some sleek, stylish, sanitizing lighting.

In two of their restaurants, Mia’s Italian Kitchen and Vola’s Dockside Grill, ARP has installed far-UVC lighting, manufactured by Healthe, to kill airborne pathogens, including the SARS-COV-2 virus, known for causing the disease, Covid-19.

Far-UVC lights pair perfectly with decorative string lights for the holidays.
Far-UVC lights blend easily into restaurant aesthetics.

This NASA level technology has been inspected, tested, and proven effective.

Each light is powerful enough to cover up to 100 square feet, assisted by ARP’s brand new, advanced, ion-based HVAC air filtration units, and petite enough to fit inside each outdoor dining tent at Mia’s and above each table in the Key West patio at Vola’s.

Customers have commented how pretty the lights look, and the twinkling of the chic feature adds a true holiday flare.

As people’s concerns about safety skyrocket during the winter months, Scott Shaw, an ARP partner, states, “You can’t go too far in safety. This was an easy decision to put the lights on the patio and in rooms without the air filtration. Employees and customers have both been appreciative of our efforts. We asked ourselves, ‘What’s the right thing to do?’ For us, this is about ensuring we have a safe workplace for our employees and a safe experience for our customers.”

Freddy Centeno-Lopez, General Manager of Vola’s Dockside Grill, adds, “This has made a true positive impact. Knowing that something is killing the virus while we are working, the guests are at ease and the team feels safer.”

Since installing the far-UVC lights, Vola’s has managed to prevent any Covid-19 cases among its employees, physical proof that the technology is trustworthy.

(Watch Scott Shaw discuss the far-UVC lights.)

The Loft at Lena’s—Winter Lodge

The Loft at Lena’s Winter Lodge is a new addition for the Yates family, owners of Lena’s Wood-Fired Pizza & Tap. This wintery wonder is not the only new thing in town, though. Inside the Winter Lodge, customers will find UV-C light fans, manufactured by the Big Ass Fans Clean Air System.

These fans use UV-C lighting to distribute the pathogen killing technology throughout the dining facility, and fan blades to circulate the air and keep it clean. Accompanied by open-air windows, and a non-recycled heating and HVAC system that brings fresh air in from outside, these fans are a new sanitizing concept that ensure customers are safe while dining indoors this winter.

The fans are black metal with large, thin blades; the lights are large enough to effectively distribute the UVC light throughout the restaurant, yet the blades are sleek enough to fit with the stylish, cozy atmosphere of the Winter Lodge.

“There is more to come!” exclaims the Yates family. “The Winter Lodge is only one of several future themes that will transform the space at the Loft at Lena’s.”

With this UV-C fan technology, customers will feel safe to enjoy each and every theme the Yates family brings to the Loft at Lena’s.

(Check out the Loft at Lena’s and their new UV-C fans.)

River Bend Bistro & Wine Bar

After seven years in the restaurant business, River Bend Bistro & Wine Bar owners, Bill and Caroline Ross, know small details make a big difference, especially when it comes to cleaning.

So, when Bill learned about the Hydroxylator, manufactured by AC Beverage, he jumped at the opportunity.

River Bend Bistro proprietor, Bill Ross, tells The Zebra about the Hydroxylator technology.

Similar to Healthe’s far-UVC lights, the Hydroxylator technology is engineered by NASA. It is not an air filter, but instead, a hydroxyl-ionizer hydro peroxide generator and AC hydroxyl maximizer.

While the name might be long, the technology itself is simple.

The Hydroxylator uses moisture in the air, UVA light, and Titanium Dioxide to form a hydrogen peroxide vapor. A water reserve tank in the back coupled with an electric titanium plate, create the vapor, which is drawn to the front by a fan.

This “reactive oxygen species” is known to be “extremely effective and safe,” according to AC Beverage.

The vapor cleans all surfaces it touches, and has a cleansing lifespan of 20 minutes. Then, the decontaminant simply turns to water vapor and CO2. This cleansing process is enhanced by River Bend’s HVAC system, which continuously circulates the air inside the restaurant, ensuring continuous sanitization.

The Hydroxylator at River Bend Bistro sits comfortably on the bar top. It is not obstructive, and just noticeable enough to catch the eyes of curious patrons.

“I want to explain to our customers what we’re doing,” says Bill Ross, Proprietor of River Bend Bistro & Wine Bar. “We’re working hard to establish trust, and the customers are happy to see us taking the steps to protect everybody. This is just an added layer of protection.”

Bill’s wife, Caroline, Chef and Owner of River Bend Bistro & Wine Bar, adds, “Peace of mind. That’s what we’re trying to create.”

(Watch Bill Ross discuss the Hydroxylator.)

Del Ray Café

You might have seen the Aqueous Ozone Sanitizing Spray Bottle, manufactured by Save The World LLC, on Ellen’s 12 Days of Giveaways. With its clear bottle, white handle, and smooth edges, the Aqueous Ozone Spray Bottle is designed to look as clean as the surfaces it sanitizes.

This new sanitizing technology was pioneered by Alexandria business woman and President of Save The World LLC, Marci Weis, and designed with both health and style in mind.

Marci Weis, President of Save the World LLC, tells The Zebra about the Aqueous Ozone Sanitizing Spray Bottle.

“This new way of protection will eliminate the use for previously used chemical methods. In today’s day and age, people are much more inclined to be attracted to everyday solutions that are natural and help reverse the damage that has been done by harmful chemicals. The bottle is an incredibly simple and an obvious alternative,” says Marci.

The spray bottles, cleared by the FDA, use household tap water to achieve a 99.9% virus reduction within 30 seconds. When you pull the trigger, the aqueous ozone within the bottle is activated, breaking up germs and bacteria without leaving a smell or residue.

Aqueous ozone is essentially ozone dissolved in water, so it is a powerful yet safe disinfectant.

After attacking pathogens, the ozone dissolves into oxygen and water molecules.

The bottles can also last between 3 and 5 years, making them a wise investment.

These bottles are simple, safe, and effective, and Marci knew they would be an incredible innovation in sanitization. So, she reached out to friend and fellow business man in Alexandria, Laurent Janowsky, owner of Del Ray Café.

“We think it makes sense for us,” says Laurent Janowsky, owner of Del Ray Café, “Anything that kills bacteria like this does, and is healthy for us to use around food, is a winner in our book. And the FDA says so, too!”

You can find these bottles in action at Del Ray Café, or get one for yourself on savetheworldllc.com.

(Read more about Marci Weis, Save The World LLC, and Del Ray Café on The Zebra.)

Each restaurant is of course still maintaining their usual sanitization protocol: hand sanitizer on each table, cleansing between customers, temperature checking of employees, QR code menus, and mask wearing and social distancing for all.

The implementation of this new technology is an added layer of protection to provide peace of mind for customers, employees, and restauranteurs, and an added layer of decoration for the holiday season .

A more visible investment provides more reassurance for customers, more protection (and style) for restaurants, and more hope for the future of small businesses.