March 10, 2009 // Franchising.com // Washington, D.C., — Vapiano, the innovative fresh casual restaurant and lounge opened its fourth location in Washington, DC this February. The new restaurant is located at 623-625 H Street NW in the popular DC neighborhood of Chinatown, steps from the Verizon Center, shopping and exciting nightlife. Vapiano International operates 51 restaurants in 15 countries and expects to open 44 to 55 new locations by the end of 2009. In the U.S. alone the company has closed deals for six stores in Southwest Florida, ten in Dallas, two in San Jose, five in Houston and three stores in Boston, Detroit and Atlanta.
"In today's economic climate, people are still looking for new and stimulating places to socialize," says Vapiano U.S.A. CEO, Bill Bessette. "Vapiano is exactly that – from our hand-crafted pasta to our striking ambiance, our mission is to give our guests an exciting experience at a great value."
International locations are in the making throughout Mexico, Australia, Bulgaria, Romania, Czech Republic, Serbia, Croatia and France, with many locations already in operation including 29 in Germany, two in Holland and Hungary and one in Belgium, Estonia, London, The Netherlands, Austria, Sweden, Saudi Arabia, Switzerland, Poland, Turkey and the UAE.
In 2008 Vapiano was awarded the coveted title of Hot Concept! from Nation's Restaurant News and appeared in Fast Casual Magazine's list of 'Movers and Shakers' for the second year in a row. The company was named one of the top ten "Best Employers" in Germany for 2008. Vapiano President, Kent Hahne, was named a finalist for CMO of the Year by Booz Allen Hamilton in 2007. In 2006, Vapiano won the European Hot Concept Award from Food Service Europe & Middle East.
Vapiano is an innovative, fast casual European concept serving made-to-order fire roasted pizzas, fresh, house-made pasta and hand tossed gourmet salads. Vapiano continues to garner global attention for their approach to dining – dishes are prepared at high temperature exhibition style wok stations, fresh herbs adorn each table and a unique chip card payment system rounds out each diner's ultra-modern experience. The restaurant's pioneering self-service technology and unmistakable upscale décor has created a huge customer fan base and helped fuel the company's worldwide expansion. Restaurants are 5,000-8,000 square feet and seat 180-220 guests.