The owners of two Birmingham fine dining staples Phoenicia and Forest are preparing to open a third restaurant in Detroit. The slightly more casual establishment called Leila is destined for the under-renovation Farwell Building in downtown’s evolving Capitol Park area, the Detroit Free Press first-reports.
Father and son restaurateurs Sameer and Samy Eid plan to open Leila in a 4,500-square-foot space spanning the ground floor and mezzanine levels of the building. The 130-seat restaurant will be designed by Saroki Architecture. In addition to the main dining room, the restaurant will feature a 20-seat lounge, private dining space, and a patio.
Leila, which is named after Sameer’s wife, will be a step away from the high-end, white tablecloth experience at Phoenicia. “We’ve got a great base in what Phoenicia is and we want to bring some of that, but we want a more contemporary, relaxed feel. Leila is like Sunday dinner at my mom’s,” Samy Eid tells the Free Press. Diners can, however, expect some of the options that have helped distinguished Phoenicia such as its family-style Lebanese mezze and, of course, the dry-rubbed ribs. Leila is expected to arrive sometime during summer 2019.
As for the Farwell, Curbed reports that the historic rehab of the building is expected to be completed by late 2018 bringing an additional 82 luxury apartments and commercial space to the area that’s recently become a hub for restaurants and high-end residential developments. Stay tuned for updates on the project as it moves forward.
• Family Behind Phoenicia, Forest to Open Lebanese Restaurant Downtown [Freep]
• Phoenicia Serves Up Unexpectedly Addictive Pork Ribs [ED]
• All Farwell Building Coverage [CDET]
• All Phoenicia Coverage [ED]
• All Capitol Park Coverage [ED]