By Kate Ouellette
Atlantic News, Thursday, July 22, 2004
HAMPTON — The atmosphere in a favorite local restaurant is now more brilliant than ever.
New furnishings, flat screen televisions, paneling and carpets have found their way into O'Leary's Bar and Grill on Route 1 in Hampton, creating a comfortable place to relax, eat, and drink with family and friends.
But something has been added with the intentions of bringing in even more clientele: a completely new, non-smoking dining room with a separate entrance.
In the past, customers at O'Leary's who preferred to be in a smoke-free environment needed to walk through the smoky lounge and bar area in order to get to the smoke-free room.
"A lot of families came into the restaurant, saw and smelled the smoke and just left," says Bobby O'Leary. "We're hoping to get those families back."
Now with the addition of the alternate entrance, getting those families back is likely to be a lot easier. Customers can have their own entrance and not ever have to go into the smoking area if they don't want to, says O'Leary.
With the recent opening of the dining room, and the summer months gaining speed, business is picking up, according to O'Leary.
"With the kids out of school, we're hoping that the word will travel about the addition, and get more people in here," he says.
The restaurant shut down completely for 10 days in March, re-opening the bar and lounge area first, then introducing the newly furnished dining room on May 27. In addition to the granite counter-tops and freshly-painted walls, a game room was also added into the mix. The room has a new pool table available for customer use next to the bar and lounge.
The change of appearance at O'Leary's makes for a very enjoyable place to eat good food and talk with friends. The dark forest green walls with contrasting paneling, four flat screen high definition televisions with digital cable, granite bar tops, hanging soft-light lamps, a friendly clientele and a smiling a staff will ensure for a great dining experience.
And though the surroundings have changed, the food at O'Leary's is still of the same great quality. There's something for everyone, from great seafood, delicious salads and pizzas, to charbroiled burgers, chicken, and the very best steak tips in New England.
Bobby O'Leary's hopes for regaining the patrons lost to the smoking lounge are high. "I invite all families to try us again," he says. "The atmosphere has all changed; so just come down and give us another try."
O'Leary's Bar and Grill is located on Route 1 in Hampton and can be reached at 926-4343.