The Arthouse, which had been a contemporary art gallery on the Avenue in Hampden, is set to re-open on Wednesday, as The Arthouse Pizza Bar and Gallery.
The transformation from gallery to gallery/eatery was years in the making.
"My intention was to have a cafe all along," said owner Joan Dolina, who opened The Arthouse in 2010 as a gallery specializing in furniture, gifts and handcrafted items. Potential business partners came and went, Dolina said, and the cafe didn't happen. Then, about a year ago, Dolina found the partners she was looking for, and right in her own backyard.
They are Pria Rayadurg and Randy Shayotovich, who own the Baltimore-based group of Cloud Nine boutiques, including the one in Hampden, which virtually next door to The Arthouse.
That settled, Dolina closed up The Arthouse for renovations, acquired a license to sell beer and wine and started working in earnest to transform the gallery into a 40-seat cafe. After a week of trial runs, The Arthouse is ready to open.
The specialty at The Arthouse is brick-oven pizza, with fresh, locally purveyed toppings, supplemented by a menu of small plates, salads and soups. The Arthouse will continue to display and sell artwork, Dolina said, but there won't be separate hours for the gallery.
The Arthouse is at 1115 W. 36th St. For information call 443-438-7700.