By Kate Parnham, Special to The Baltimore Sun
4:09 PM EDT, May 21, 2012
Virginia Beach continues to grow, adding restaurants, retail, meeting space and other improvements. The Laskin Road Gateway's $100 million development continues with the goal of transforming the surrounding 31st Street and oceanfront area into a pedestrian-friendly corridor with high-end dining, retail and entertainment.
Todd Jurich's 21st Century BurgerBar, 530 Winston Salem Ave., 757-351-0488, toddsburgerbar.com. For one of the best views of Virginia Beach's Rudee Inlet, head to newly opened BurgerBar, which features 100 percent grass-fed beef, nitrogen shakes and parmesan truffle fries.
Holiday Inn & Suites North Beach, 3900 Atlantic Ave., 757-428-1711, vboceanfrontnorth.com. The hotel completed a full renovation just over a year ago, adding 83 oceanfront suites with private balconies, 36-inch flat-screen TVs and iPod docking stations, not to mention 8,000 square feet of meeting space in five meeting rooms, as well as a 48-seat movie theater.
Adventure River at OceanBreeze Waterpark, 849 General Booth Blvd., 757-422-4444, oceanbreezewaterpark.com. Following last year's addition of the Neptune's Revenge four-slide complex and Hook's Lagoon children's area, OceanBreeze just completed phase two of their three-year renovations. This time, the park added a lazy Adventure River, which spans 1,000 feet with waves and numerous interactive elements, and built a 3.5-acre expansion. There's also a new restaurant, deck area, cabanas and restrooms.
Havana Nights, 4517 Commerce St., 855-301-2822. This Cuban restaurant in Town Center offers live jazz club and members-only private cigar club.
Yard House, 4549 Commerce St., 757-490-9273. This brew-centric restaurant is also in Town Center. It has nearly 130 beers on tap, from local to international.
"Andy Warhol: Portraits," at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art, 2200 Parks Ave., 757-425-0000, VirginiaMOCA.org. The museum is unveiling more than 200 original works on loan from The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, Pa., May 26 to Aug. 19. The exhibition will feature more than 100 of Warhol's portraits paintings. A Studio-54-themed celebration kicks off the exhibit on May 25.
What's tried and true
Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront, 3001 Atlantic Ave., 757-213-3000, hilton.com. The hotel, which opened in 2005, is beloved for its rooftop area, complete with infinity pool and Sky Bar, where guests can sip poolside before heading to one of its award-winning restaurants: Catch 31, a seafood hotspot with ocean views and an open air kitchen and raw bar, and Salacia, a four-diamond steakhouse. Fifty-three rooms on the top three floors of the hotel offer extra amenities and a Club Lounge. Other classic hotels include The Westin Town Center, Turtle Cay Resort and the Cavalier Hotel.
Eat: An American Bistro, 4500 Atlantic Ave., 757-965-2472, eatbistro.net. Tucked away behind the boardwalk is a local favorite featuring fresh seafood and produce, with daily specials written on the charming chalkboard. Don't miss the dim sum trio. Other oldies but goodies include Terrapin Restaurant, Mahi Mah's, Waterman's Beachwood Grill and Tautog's Restaurant.
Sandler Center, 201 Market St., 757-385-2555, sandlercenter.org. A world-class venue that seats 1,308 all within 100 feet of the stage, is celebrating their fifth anniversary this fall after more than 100 sell-out performances by the likes of Harry Connick, Jr., Gladys Knight and Willie Nelson. This summer, check out their outdoor concert series "Ynot Wednesdays?", which, in partnership with the Farmer's Market, features local musicians alongside fresh produce every Wednesday during the summer. Be sure to catch Air Supply on July 14 and The Gipsy Kings on Aug. 4.
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