Eat It, Virginia


Island Shrimp Co. to open along the James River

Posted at 12:53 PM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-10 15:06:06-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- Island Shrimp Co. is opening along the James River. HOUSEpitality Family plans to open a Island Shrimp Co. location at Rocketts Landing, next to the company's Boathouse restaurant.

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Conch Republic in Rocketts Landing

“We’re looking forward to adding another HOUSEpitality Family concept at Rocketts Landing, an area that has been special to us since we opened The Boathouse at Rocketts Landing in 2009,” Kevin Healy, owner of HOUSEpitality Family restaurant group, said. “At the time, The Boathouse was the first restaurant to utilize the riverfront location along the James and our whole team is excited that the second location of Island Shrimp Co. will be right on the water.”

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When it opens in 2022, the new Island Shrimp Co. will be the second area location.

The original Island Shrimp Co. opened at Chesterfield Towne Center in 2019.

Over the summer, HOUSEpitality Family announced it bought the Conch Republic restaurant space which will become the new Island Shrimp Co.

"We don't run out of new ideas," Paige Healy, HOUSEpitality Family’s Chief Creative Officer, said. "But Island Shrimp Co. has always been the right answer for this space."

She pointed to the restaurant's size, waterfront location, and overall feel.

"Island Shrimp Co. pairs with the vacation vibe mixed with the city influence," she said. "It's going to be really fun and have amazing beach bonfire vibes."

While the new Island Shrimp Co. won't have a party bridge that connects it to The Boathouse Rocketts Landing, Paige Healy said having two restaurants close together has been a winning strategy for the company.

"It allows us to cross utilize and cross-train the staff," she said. "Plus supplies and extra hands are always close by."

HOUSEpitality Family owns Island Shrimp Co. and Casa Del Barco at Chesterfield Towne Center and The Boathouse and Casa Del Barco at Short Pump Town Center.

"It helps create a well-rounded employee and there's never a lack of opportunity within the company," she said. "Chefs who train at The Boathouse feel comfortable running a Casa del Barco. It allows us to create positions for professionals."

To that end, Island Shrimp Co. and HOUSEpitality Family are always hiring for a number of positions.

"It's exhilarating and we're very excited to open a restaurant in this environment," Paige Healy said. "The pandemic allowed us to pioneer a new serving style. The pandemic shook everything up.. Not everything was smooth, but because of our supportive community, they gave us the grace to help explore ways to better take care of our employees."

Healy was referring to HOUSEpitality Family's pandemic-born "blended service." Instead of waiting for a server to approach your table to take your order, HOUSEpitality Family restaurants encourage customers to pull up a digital menu and order whatever they want, whenever they're ready.

"It's allowed us to pay higher wages to our staff, invest in healthcare, and 401K for employees. It has helped us promote growth and financial security," she said. "We're always hiring, always looking for the right person."

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