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2017-08-16 / Taste

Boathouse and Casa del Barco owner plans new county eateries

BY RICH GRISET STAFF WRITER

Kevin Healy, owner of The Boathouse and Casa del Barco restaurants, plans to open two new restaurants at Chesterfield Towne Center next summer. ASH DANIELKevin Healy, owner of The Boathouse and Casa del Barco restaurants, plans to open two new restaurants at Chesterfield Towne Center next summer. ASH DANIELA colorful shipping container. A metal Streamline trailer. If all goes according to plan, these objects will be the conversation pieces of two new restaurants slated to open at Chesterfield Towne Center by the end of next summer. Both are the work of Kevin Healy, owner of The Boathouse and Casa del Barco restaurants.

One of the new restaurants will be the third location of Casa del Barco, which is Spanish for boat house and offers redefined Mexican fare and a large tequila selection. The other restaurant will be Shrimp Shack, a new concept for Healy’s HOUSEpitality Family restaurant group.

“It’s going to be a more casual, fun, seafood-themed restaurant,” says Healy, sitting on the patio of The Boathouse’s first location at Sunday Park in Brandermill. “We’re going to leverage the seafood knowledge that we have gained all of these years, and we’re going to use it in a less formal atmosphere.”

Healy says Shrimp Shack’s concept is still evolving, but it will likely feature small plates served in trays, baskets and bowls. Shrimp rolls, calamari, hamburgers and chicken sandwiches are being considered for the menu, as are well-crafted cocktails.

The restaurants will be located near fast fashion retailer H&M in a space where the Chesterfield Towne Center mall office used to exist. Shrimp Shack will be constructed from rectangular shipping containers, and feature an additional shipping container on the roof that will function as a bar. Casa del Barco will also have a rooftop bar where patrons can purchase tacos sold from a Streamline trailer. The rooftop spaces of the two restaurants will be connected via a pedestrian bridge.

“Visually, they’re going to be stimulating,” says Healy, who operates his restaurant group with his son and daughter. Healy says Rouse Properties, the mall’s owners, approached him several times over the years about bringing a business to their property. Rouse was recently acquired by Brookfield Asset Management, which Healy says has deep pockets and a vision for the mall’s future.

“They see Chesterfield Towne Center as being a long-term investment,” he says. “[They’re] looking at more creative use of the abundance of space that they have.”

While Healy’s restaurant ventures span the Richmond metro area, they have their roots in Chesterfield. A Brandermill resident for decades, Healy took over ownership of Sunday’s Restaurant in 1988, eventually rebranding it as The Boathouse 18 years later. The second Boathouse location opened at Rocketts Landing in 2009, and Casa del Barco opened in 2013 on Richmond’s Canal Walk. A third Boathouse location opened at Short Pump Town Center in 2015, and a fourth in Hopewell this June. A second Casa del Barco is scheduled to launch in November at Short Pump Town Center.

Asked about whether residents in a county with so many chain restaurants will find his new non-chain offerings appealing, Healy is confident.

“This isn’t a news flash, but people have been to some of those chain restaurants enough,” he says. “Everybody’s looking for something a little bit different.” ¦

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