This week for Not So Long Ago, GM moves back up to the top of Wisconsin Ave between R and S Streets.
Nowadays, from left to right this block hosts Gill & Sons realtor, First Cash pawn shop, P.O. Boxes Etc., an office building, Shanghai Lounge, and Bistro Lepic.
In some ways, very little has changed about this strip. Gill & Sons is still in the same place and P.O. Boxes Etc. also hasn’t moved or changed its name (despite the obvious trademark issue with Mailboxes Etc.). But some of the other stores have seen quite a bit of turnover over the years.
In 1993, next to Gill & Sons was Companions pet and grooming. There also appears to be a sign at that address for Hair International of Georgetown. So apparently you could bring your dog and both of you could get a cut.
By 2004, this space held District Fine Arts, which later moved down Wisconsin Ave. before closing last year. At the same time, Spiral Flight Yoga occupied the upstairs. It later moved up the street before it too closed last year.
A few years ago Carrine’s Bridal and Anthony occupied this space before moving out about a year ago. First Cash was across the street next to the Duron paint store before it was kicked out so that Safeway could knock down its building. It’s like musical chairs up there.
On the right of P.O. Boxes Etc., it appears that in 1993 the space was empty. At some point the Indian restaurant Curry Club opened up there. This restaurant stayed open until a few years ago. In its place a Korean restaurant called Arisu opened up. GM passed Arisu a million times without going in. Finally he stopped by, somewhat out of pity for the apparently struggling restaurant. And it was very, very good food. GM was resolved to stop by more often, but sadly they closed a few weeks later. The space sat empty for a long time until Shanghai Lounge moved in earlier this year. What GM would love to see would be a restaurant that fused all three of those styles, Indian, Korean and Chinese. Mmmmm…..
Beyond that space, you can’t quite see it in the 1993 photo, but as we’ll see in a later edition, Bistro Lepic’s space was occupied by Greek Port, a Greek restaurant. The French favorite moved in in 1995 and has obviously been there ever since.