Looking for a General Contractor in Virginia Beach?
There are so many locally owned businesses in the Hampton Roads area and it’s refreshing to hear about the successes they’ve had. I had the pleasure of being able to sit down for a few minutes with the owner of WHE Construction, Bill Etheredge, who operates his business in Virginia Beach, VA and he had some interesting facts to share about his business.
Can you tell us a little bit about your business?
Bill: We started the business in February 1999. I was working as a general contractor for my dad and I was a superintendent/field supervisor for his company. We had a big contract with the naval base doing window and door replacements and renovations. I was working in the field and had to answer to my dad. I was basically doing quality control for the business. It was a 6-year contract and I really started to work it halfway through.
Since I knew how to do it all myself and I knew the contract wasn't going to last forever, I decided to start my own company.
At first, I was sub-contracting a lot of the work but then I decided to move into more residential work, doing things like siding, roofing, remodeling, room additions and garage builds. Today, we have several crews that handle everything from new construction and remodeling to other projects.
That sounds interesting. What was the toughest thing for you when you were starting the company?
Bill: Keeping busy and having enough work to do would have been the biggest challenges. That, and finding good help and workers. I don't just hire anyone. I prefer to hire people that I know or through someone who was referred to me.
Sounds like you have found a way to make it work for you. If you had start it all over, what would you have done differently?
Bill: I don't think I would have done anything much differently other than perhaps done more advertising, early on, since we were such a new company in the area at the time and people didn't really know who we were. You could be the best business in the world, but if nobody knows who you are, it can be hard to get new customers. You’ve gotta get your name out there.
Very true. What is the toughest part about owning a company in today’s business environment?
Bill: Well, getting and keeping good personnel would probably be the toughest thing. Scheduling the work can get challenging, sometimes, especially when you run into construction issues that take time to fix. You can't predict the weather, either.
If a customer were to choose between you and 3 other companies, why should they choose you?
Bill: I feel like I'm very honest with people. I treat them how I'd like to be treated and give everyone a fair price.
Fair enough. What do you feel is the #1 thing that's bringing in business today?
Bill: That’s an easy one - referrals. We also get some work from our website and other advertising, but about 80 percent is from referrals. When someone refers you, it almost feels like you know that person already. There is immediate trust is there.
That makes sense. So, Bill, as a local business owner, has the internet played a role for you as it has become more prevalent?
Bill: I would say, at one time, the phone book was used more, but it has faded away over time. There are still folks out there that don't used the internet and prefer the phone book whom we still get calls from here and there. I had a guy last week call me, who found us in the yellow pages and he doesn't even use email. I asked him “How will I get the quote to you?” He said “Just call me. I don't do any of that internet stuff, no faxing, no email, nothing.”
Wow, interesting. If you were to look out 6 months to a year into the future, where would you like to see your business and why?
Bill: I'd like to just see the work keep steady. I don't like to see it getting too big because you lose the one-on-one side of the business. A lot of times I'll go out and estimate the job and am also the same one who works on the job. I don't want to get so big where I lose the client contact and only get to see a finished job.
That’s great to remain humble. So, what exactly does WHE stand for?
Bill: Oh, it's my name, and it also stands for We Handle Everything.
Fantastic. Thanks, Bill. It was great speaking with you and thank you for your time.
And there you have it. WHE is another hometown business making a BIG mark in the Hampton Roads area.
Bill has done all he can to maintain personal contact with his clients, while keeping his business humble.
If there was ever a reason to shop with a local-based business, Bill has given many reasons why it can be a huge asset for not only the business owner, but for the customer, as well. They get business and you get one-on-one customer service.
With a company like WHE, you will never be ‘just another number,’ but you will be a face with a name they will remember.
1828 Legare Ln
Virginia Beach, VA
Another Hidden Hotspot and a Local’s Favorite
Situated in the “Back Bay Area” of Virginia Beach, Blue Pete's original structure, prior to 1972, was a marina and bait shop, and housed a small restaurant for about 20-25 people.
It prided itself on being a place where people could come and hang out to listen to music and play a little pool before heading out.
Today, that restaurant is much larger and can accommodate many more guests. It has been known to host parties, weddings and many more restaurant guests than it ever could before. Blue Pete’s gets its name from the bird, a water fowl, often found in the waters of Back Bay.
The restaurant is now owned by two twin brothers who grew up in the area and have made the restaurant as welcoming as they could make it.
Keeping the restaurant as close to its original feel as possible, locals appreciate the sentiment and return often, to enjoy the natural surroundings. The property is situated so that it can accommodate outdoor parties and it is not a shock to drive in the parking lot in the summer to hear a band playing outdoors.
The river adjacent to the restaurant is a serene view for guests to look out from the restaurant to, or sit outside on the deck to enjoy the sounds and smells of nature. Folks have been known to canoe or kayak to the restaurant from down the river.
In the summertime, people are playing cornhole and sitting out at picnic tables, enjoying the weather. When my family comes to town for a summertime visit, Blue Pete’s is always a hit, as they serve some of the BEST seafood around.
Fresh catches and raw bar items are on the menu, as well as a variety of pasta, steak and sandwich dishes. The menu has something for everyone. Inside the restaurant is a bar that hardly ever has an empty stool and it is typical to see locals hanging out in groups by the bar on a Friday or Saturday evening.
After a good meal, you can take a walk on the many decks they have around the property to walk off your meal while enjoying the scenic views around the restaurant. If you have never been to Blue Pete’s it might be worth your trip to take a drive out the Muddy Creek and see what you have been missing!
Blue Pete's Restaurant
1400 N Muddy Creek Rd
Virginia Beach, VA 23456
Heading to MacArthur Mall?
Whenever I make a trip to Norfolk to go to MacArthur Mall, it is never complete without a stop in Charming Charlie’s. Unlike Claire’s, that typically caters to the younger crowd of ladies, this store is the perfect accessory shop for anyone who is a bit too mature for “teeny bopper” jewelry.
Until I found this store, I always had a hard time finding ‘career-minded’ accessories for my work outfits, without having to resort to places I wouldn’t normally shop, and often left stores feeling disappointed because I couldn’t find what I was after. Since finding Charming Charlie’s I have not had that problem ever since.
When you walk in the store, you see that key items are on full display, in the smartest of ways. I have never walked out of the store unhappy with a purchase, nor have I been unable to find what I was looking for. Even if I had an idea in mind, they always have something available that gets close to the mark, if not exactly what I needed.
The store focuses primarily on jewelry and accessories, like necklaces, purses and handbags, but they also sell a small selection of clothing. Each section of the store is broken down by “color” blocks.
Depending on what colors are in style for the season, you will see sections of the store, uniquely organized, to showcase all the items they sell in each of those color choices. They take the display ingenuity one step further and dress mannequins in complete outfits that they sell, complementing those outfits with their hottest styles of jewelry. Pretty smart! Upselling their products is taken to an entirely new level in this store.
Each section sells a variety of belts, necklaces, earrings, scarves, handbags, brooches, rings and clothing. It doesn’t matter what section or color you start with each section is set up much like the others and has similar products available in a more than one color. The price points are very affordable and they often have sales that are too good to miss out on.
Buy one, get two free sales are my favorite! In the very back of the store is a Rhinestone collection, which is very popular around the holidays and Prom seasons. When you have a need to get dressed up for special occasions like weddings and parties, this is the perfect place to go! They have tons of bracelets, rhinestone tiaras, headbands and anything else you can think of to provide that extra sparkle you need.
So, the next time you find yourself in the MacArthur Mall, check out Charming Charlie’s. You won’t walk out empty-handed.
How About a Warm Slice of Deliciousness?!
If you stomach is in the market for a delicious Neapolitan pizza, then Pizza Bella Vista is where you should be setting you GPS to!
In business since May 11th of 2012, Pizza Bella Vista and the Signorelli family have made a name for themselves. Every pizza lover in Chesapeake have heard of them.
The key to their success, according to Michael Signorelli, has been the old-world techniques used in preparing every pizza as well as the freshest, local ingredients available to them. The combination of two creates the most delicious experience for everyone no matter their taste.
Pizza Bella Vista has tons of great offers for the community which are generally listed on their Facebook page and their website.
They do take reservations in case you're wondering. The restaurant is also a great place for groups of friends to hang out at, mainly due to the very friendly atmosphere and staff.
Satisfy your hunger and visit Pizza Bella Vista in Chesapeake, when you just gotta have pizza, we promise that you won't regret it!
Pizza Bella Vista
927 N Battlefield Blvd
Chesapeake, VA 23320
Searching For The Best Hair Care & Waxing Experience?
Look no further! Aqua Salon and Spa got you covered from head to toe!
They provide a wide variety of beauty services for any and all of your needs.
The salon itself is extremely clean and bacteria-free as far as the naked eye can see of course.
Their focus is on organic & eco-friendly beauty services at affordable prices.
The owner, Alaida Melley, who is a native of The Dominican Republic, designed Aqua Salon & Spa as a reflection of her love for the beach, which is why it's located very close to the Virginia beach Oceanfront. She loves helping people stay beautiful and helping her local community.
Aqua Salon & Spa generally has line during their peak hours, and their high class customer service definitely plays a role in that, so if you're thinking about booking an appointment, I'd recommend you do it soon... Like right now!
Aqua Salon and Spa
4000 Virginia Beach Blvd
Virginia Beach, VA 23452
Ready For Your Taste Buds To Go Nuts?
Welcome to The Route 58 Delicatessen located right off of Virginia Beach Blvd. I personally got to taste The Super Reuben and it's as good as everyone says it is!
This restaurant might be one of the busiest I've ever seen! There's generally 10 or so people waiting right outside the door no matter if it's Winter or Summer.
The staff are extremely nice and knowledgeable of the menu items. One, and possibly the only thing that isn't listed on the menu is calorie count for each dish, which is self explanatory! Every sandwhich on the menu is a masterpiece and it sure looks like one.
Aside from the looks... The taste is truly extraordinary. All meats are fresh and all breads are crisp.
Had a chance to look up the reviews for Route 58 Delicatessen and there's not a single mention of low quality of food.
Route 58 is open Monday thru Sunday from 10:30AM to 8PM and they also offer orders at GrubHub and Seamless.
If you're looking to try something different, go ahead and visit Jeff Goldberg at The Route 58 Delicatessen Today!
The Route 58 Delicatessen
Loehmanns Plaza Shopping Center,
4000 Virginia Beach Blvd #156,
Virginia Beach, VA 23452
All The Iron You Need!
Looking to get in the best shape of your life for the upcoming beach season?
Look no further than Flex Gym Inc!
They're conveniently located right off of Bonney Road in Virginia Beach, fairly close to the Mt. Trashmore park.
We've checked out plenty of local gyms here in Virginia Beach, but could find anything that was very, you know... Old School! Pumping Iron and Heavy Lifting is what you can find plenty of at the Flex Gym Inc.
They do challenges like the Biggest Loser and attend championships like the World Powerlifting.
No fancy signs, no cool ads or posters and that's exactly why we love it. It's straight and to the point!
Show up, lift, repeat!
You can check the Flex Gym Inc at: 4020 Bonney Rd # 112, Virginia Beach, VA 23452
Give them a call at: (757) 631-2445
Their website: flexgymvb.com
Is that fresh baked bread that I smell?
There’s nothing quite like homemade… the freshest ingredients, the personal touch and the taste is remarkable!
That is what you get when you visit The Baker’s Crust, located in the Hilltop North Shopping Center in Virginia Beach, VA! Locally owned and operated, The Baker’s Crust has been a ‘local hotspot’ with a menu that has continued to suit every taste since the day it opened its doors.
After recently undergoing a remodeling facelift, the restaurant continues to be a relaxing environment to enjoy a glass of wine with friends over a nice lunch, or sit at the bar and take in a game with friends.
The restaurant is one you can feel comfortable going to after an afternoon out shopping, or to even spend a little time together on a dinner date. It is also family-friendly, so it makes the restaurant a win-win for everyone.
On display in the main dining area, just to the left of the bar, is a brick oven where they make all their breads and baked goods. The smell of fresh baked bread fills the restaurant, adding to the already inviting ambiance.
Their soups and sandwiches are widely what they are known for, but they also make pizza! All their breads are baked fresh daily and it’s what makes the taste of their entrees truly unique. If you cannot decide what you want, you can always choose a ½ and ½, which is a half a cup of soup and a half of any variety of sandwiches they have available.
For dinner, the menu changes up a little and you can make heartier choices in dinner plates, ranging from sandwiches to pastas and everything in between.
The restaurant has often been a participant in “Restaurant Week,” where you can get a taste of the wide variety of selections they offer. On your way out, what would be a better way to end your tasty meal than with a fresh baked cookie the size of a teacup plate?
They have a variety of baked goods and desserts that you can enjoy while you are there or take home with you to enjoy later.
Visit www.BakersCrust.com for a full menu and contact information.
Meet me at the Corner Restaurant!
If you are an avid Norfolk Admirals Hockey Fan or spend any amount of time in the Downtown Area of Norfolk, then you are probably familiar with Baxter’s Restaurant.
The restaurant sits on a corner about 2 city-blocks away from The Norfolk Scope, and is often a gathering spot for all the fans before big games during the regular Hockey Season.
When you walk up to the restaurant, you will see places for outdoor seating, along the sidewalk. In the warmer months, it is no surprise to see folks hanging around outdoors, enjoying a meal with friends, or sharing stories after a long week over a drink.
Inside, there are TVs along every stretch of wall space, and even a few hanging ones in the center sections of the seating area.
The wait staff is friendly, quick and welcoming. Usually a hostess will seat you when you walk in, during busy times.
It’s typical before a Hockey game to find the restaurant in a standing room only capacity, or with many tables pushed together for large groups who are saving seats for late-coming friends. Most of the time, there are specials available for you to choose from, as well as the ability to select from a wide variety of items on their menu.
With a full bar, you can also choose from a myriad of beers on tap or order you favorite mixed drink.
During Football Season, Baxter’s Restaurant can become entertaining, as the sounds of cheering fans carries throughout the restaurant, allowing you to know when there are happy fans nearby!
With so many TVs, it’s a great place to hang out with a group of friends and take in a game in a fun and entertaining environment. Parking along the streets can be a little difficult to get, but there are parking decks nearby which charge reasonable rates.
I am not ashamed to admit I have driven 30 minutes out of my way, in rush hour traffic, to stop at the MacArthur Center, because my home tea supply needed to be replenished!
Teavana, in the MacArthur Center may be a tiny shop in the mall, but it packs a BIG punch and has so many items in it, it seems a little overwhelming when you think about it.
Some naysayers might say “Yes, but it is “just tea!”’ No. This store does not carry your run of the mill ordinary teas. The ingredients are flash dried and are always fresh, the aromas are incredible and the results? Teas that leave you wanting another cup!
Samples are available throughout the store that are infused with flowers, fresh herbs, and plants that offer healthy properties for our bodies. When you mix flavors and leaves, the combinations are pretty endless!
The teas are sweetened with natural rock salt, which is easier for your body to break down and process, unlike processed and refined sugar you can buy in the grocery store. You can buy any variety of the leaves, floral note blends and rock salt to recreate the flavors you found to be the most invigorating to you, at home.
Teavana carries specialty steepers that allow you to place the fresh tea in it, along with the rock sugar and hot water. Each blend requires you to steep the tea for different timeframes, depending on tea strength and blend you are steeping. When the tea is ready, you simply set the specialty steeper on top of a coffee mug and it drains the freshly brewed, sweetened tea into the mug, without the leaves and flowers.
They offer gift sets, to get your friends hooked, and if you are really excited about a blend of tea, they will be happy to brew you a cup to-go, with a purchase. If you are a fan of teas, Teavana is one you should NOT miss out on.
Looking For a Local Tree Service?
Very customer oriented company and we have nothing but great things to say about them.
If you'd like to get in touch with Mike's Tree Service, please visit mikestreevb.com and schedule you free estimate.
Time for some sweets? It's always that time at the Naas!
As someone who's not all into the sweets, i gotta say... It's GOOD!
I'm not just saying it because I have to... but because I've had the opportunity to try it for myself!
To some, it might have a feel of a regular, old-school bakery, but in my opinion, that's it's actual charm, aside of course from all the deliciousness.
Another thing worth mentioning is their creativity with the cakes.
I've had the opportunity to check out a few of them in the back and I must say that the cake's design is only limited by your imagination.
Ladies at the Naas Bakery with ensure that you are satisfied with the end result of their hard work.
I've seen cakes the shape of a whiskey bottle, pacifier and a helmet... That was enough for me.
Anyways... If you feel like it's that sweet tooth time, definitely check out the Naas Bakery in Norfolk.
3527 Tidewater Dr
Norfolk, VA 23509