Two bedrooms and bacon guacamole

The former Reynolds North metals plant, shown in June 2012, left, and today, is now called the Locks.

One of the biggest real estate deals of 2012 has taken two big leaps forward in the past two weeks.

The first residents are moving into the apartments at the former Reynolds North metals plant – now called the Locks – and restaurateur Kevin Healy’s Casa del Barco is open for business in the ground floor of one of the development’s key buildings on Haxall Canal.

“We still have a fair amount of construction to wrap up, but we’ve hit some huge milestones,” said Richard Souter, one of the principals at WVS, developer of the $35 million project.

Souter said the development has 88 apartments available for lease between the Italianate and Alume buildings off Byrd Street. An additional 86 apartments in the North Canal and White Byrd buildings will be open in the next two months, he said. Another 54 apartments are planned at the site in the second half of 2013. J D Lewis is the contractor on the project.

Tom Papa, a principal at Fountainhead Properties, which is a partner in the development and manages the property, said the leasing activity has been as strong as he’s seen.

“We received our temporary certificate of occupancy 22 days ago, and we have 20 apartments leased and almost that many moved in,” Papa said. “We’re getting about six inquiries per day.”

The one- and two-bedroom apartments at the Locks lease for between $1,200 and $1,800 per month.

WVS and Fountainhead bought the seven-acre property in March 2012 from Reynolds Group Holdings. The property had been vacant for about three years.

Meanwhile, down on the canal, Kevin Healy’s 8,000-square-foot Casa del Barco is almost through its second week in business.

“Reviews out of the gate have been very positive,” Healy said. “We’re trying to create a very controlled environment and provide a consistent experience for our customers.”

Healy said he’s noticed that some menu items have been especially popular.

“The bacon guacamole has done well,” he said. “The pork tacos and braised short rib enchiladas as well. For the dessert, the traditional-style flan has been very well received.”

Healy also owns the Boathouse at Sunday Park and the Boathouse at Rocketts Landing.

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7 Comments on "Two bedrooms and bacon guacamole"

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Connie Nielsen

Lets not forget the awesome margaritas! I was there yesterday and was very impressed. Kevin, you did a fantastic job with the buildout. The restaurant looks awesome. Can’t wait for the patio to open!


Dessert = flan
Desert = hot place with lots of sand

Drew Roever

Amazing. Purchased, renovated, and people living there all in less than a year. Congratulations on a terrific job. Can we get WVS to do something with the coliseum next?


I am the second tenant to occupy the Italianate on the canal it’s a lovely building!


This is huge for Richmond. Thanks to the developers for making this happen. I can’t wait to see the final product next year. Keep up the good work!

Bruce Anderson

Kevin Healy and Rick Souter. Two great guys doing great things for this town. Good luck and keep up the good work.


Welcome to the neighborhood, from your neighbors across the canal at Riverside on the James! Glad to have a new restaurant within (very) easy walking distance!