Next month, a well-known Triangle restauranteur will open a new catering and event space.
Giorgios Bakatsias is working on a brand new concept. The prolific chef, restaurant owner, and restaurateur has opened several new restaurants this year. Aria Events and Catering will open in Durham, North Carolina in June.
The venue will host weddings, corporate events, galas, fundraisers, and theatrical productions. The venue is more than 12,000 sq ft and located north of downtown at 2609 N. Duke St.
Bakatsias' restaurants are known for their elaborate and extravagant decor. The new event space, according to a press release, will be opulent.
Aria Events and Catering is now accepting event bookings. Bakatsias’ company, Giorgios Hospitality Group, owns the concept.
Bakatsias stated in the press release that 'our company has always been interested in creating a space for celebrations, artistic endeavors and to uphold our high standards of service and hospitality'. We are excited to be able to offer this amazing venue to the local community. It will focus on weddings and corporate events as well as dinner theaters and charity work.
Igor Gacina will be the General Manager of Aria Events and Catering. He is Bakatsias’ long-time Durham restaurant Parizade. Jason Lawless will be in charge of the menu. He is executive chef at Parizade, and a partner in Bakatsias’s new restaurant Krill.
Aria will have six private dining rooms, decorated with murals created by Adrienne Hemlein. The Aria lobby is 2,500 square feet in size and can accommodate up to 200 people.
A grand ballroom, with a bar and stage, is also available. The balcony wraps around the room, which can accommodate 275 people. The smaller ballroom can accommodate up to 200 people and is located next to an outdoor garden.
There are conference rooms for up to forty people.
Bakatsias, who opened Parizade Durham in 1988, has expanded his hospitality empire since then to 14 locations. He has been nominated by the James Beard Foundation for Outstanding Restaurateur Award and named by the North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association as Restaurateur 2022 of the Year.