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<< < June 2017 > >>
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Virginia Beach Area Features

What's New in Virginia Beach?

  By: Jacquelyn Eurice
Photo Credit: Clark Nexsen landscape architects, virginiaaquarium.com, Murphys Irish Pub

Freshest Seafood

If you really want to know where your seafood comes from, then head to Murphy’s Irish Pub for amazing food and drinks as well as a technological system that can show you where and when your fish was caught. Murphy’s is the home base for Chesapeake Wild, a local organization that works with local fishermen to ensure that local diners get the freshest catch. When you order your seafood at Murphy’s, a card is presented with your meal that contains a QR code. Scan the code with your smartphone to find out about your fresh catch. Sustainable seafood now comes with added peace of mind at Murphy’s!

Norfolk’s Revitalized Waterside District

On May 11, the long-awaited official Grand Opening of the new Waterside District in Norfolk finally took place. The old building that dated back to 1983 was completely reconstructed with a contemporary feel. New life was breathed into the area with trendy stores and restaurants including Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse, Star Hill Brewery, Rappahannock Oyster Co., the always entertaining Fudgery, and many more! Fun Fact: The Fudgery was an original tenant back in the ‘80s and has now returned to Waterside. Stop by and be among the first to experience this new destination for entertainment and dining.

Komodo Dragon Babies

In August of last year, the Virginia Aquarium got some new residents. Two Komodo dragons were born! The staff members at the popular attraction were surprised by this event since mom wasn’t always very receptive to dad, plus, she had hidden her eggs away from view—which is standard behavior for these massive reptiles. When the babies were found emerging from the buried nest in the exhibit, they were only 16 and 18 inches long and weighed .13 and .23 pounds. Nearly a year later, the two males have tripled in size and in May, they were given Indonesian names: Bejo meaning “lucky,” and Kado, which translates to “gift.” Since it is difficult and rare to breed this endangered species in captivity, they are indeed lucky gifts— especially since their mother died from a reproductive infection before they were born. Bejo and Kado are expected to grow to be about 10 feet in length and weigh over 300 pounds. Stop by the Aquarium to visit the proud papa, Teman (the young ones are not yet on exhibit), and see one of the largest lizards in the world.

New Zip Lines

Step outside the Virginia Aquarium and take to new heights on the ropes course and zip lines at the Adventure Park. New this year are three zip lines where adventurers can experience the thrill of gliding through the trees. Let gravity be your guide while embarking on this exhilarating activity.

New Outlet Center in Norfolk

If you’re near the airport, have just crossed the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, or just want to get some retail therapy, you’ll definitely want to stop at one of the largest outlet centers in Virginia. New in the summer of 2017, Norfolk Premium Outlets is opening approximately 85 retail stores. Tommy Bahama, Under Armour, Converse Shoes and Kay Jewelers are just a few of the popular stores where shoppers can score great deals on famous name-brand merchandise.

Navy SEAL Monument

Virginia Beach’s appreciation for the United States military is apparent at the Virginia Beach Naval Aviation Monument on 25th Street and in local events and celebrations. Recently, a memorial was erected on the boardwalk at 38th Street to specifically honor the Navy SEALs. The Navy makes Hampton Roads its largest East Coast home and has bases in Virginia Beach including Naval Air Station Oceana and the amphibious Joint Expeditionary Base-Little Creek. The Navy SEALs have had a presence at Little Creek for 75 years, and visitors are invited to see the new semi-circle monument with a “naked warrior” statue that pays homage to the military’s fighting elite.

Smartmouth Pilot-House

Smartmouth Brewery has been making a lot of noise in Norfolk’s Chelsea district for its outstanding craft beer. Now, it’s expanding to a second location at 32nd Street near the Virginia Beach Oceanfront. The company purchased a former post office that they are renovating into what they’re calling the Smartmouth Pilot-House. The venue will have a tasting room, private spaces for events, and an outdoor patio where you can relax as you sip your beer.

Grand Opening of the Cavalier

Perhaps the most famous landmark along the Virginia Beach Oceanfront is the historic Cavalier Hotel. Over the past three years the building has been subjected to new construction and extensive renovations – but the work is just about done. In the fall of 2017, the doors to the hotel are expected to open again to guests who seek luxury and refinement. The Cavalier is now part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection, which consists of some of the most lavish hotels in the world.

Creating a New Identity

The Old Coast Guard Station on the boardwalk at 24th Street is going through some changes—and it’s all for the good. The iconic building is acquiring many more historical artifacts to expand its collection. In addition, it’s getting a new name. The 1903 nautical relic of bygone times will now be known as the Virginia Beach Surf & Rescue Museum. In addition to exhibiting its past life-saving activities and its role in wartime efforts, it will also showcase life along the Virginia coast experienced by past generations.

 

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