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Fresh off the renovations at The Bombay Club, which helped earn it a 2 1/2-star re-review from Tom Sietsema on Sunday, owner Ashok Bajaj plans to overhaul his 701 restaurant on Pennsylvania Avenue NW just in time for its 20th anniversary next year.
Bajaj says the renovations at 701 will be extensive, probably in the same $600,000 budget range as those at Bombay Club, which celebrated its 20th anniversary last year with a pricey face lift. Though the plans are still in the draft stage, Bajaj wants to redo the kitchen, the floors, the wine storage area, and other parts of 701. He also plans to add two private dining rooms to cater to the increasing need for stand-up parties that conform to Congressional lobbying rules, which limit free food to anything you can eat with your fingers.
The overhaul will be thorough enough to force Bajaj to close 701, likely for a week to 10 days, the owner says. He’s not sure when the renovations will begin, but he predicts sometime this summer, perhaps in July, so that the work can be finished in time for Restaurant Week in August.
And as I learned during the most recent Restaurant Week, 701 does the bi-annual promotion extremely well.