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(Updated 7:30 a.m., Dec. 2)
Cedar Valley Lebanese Food restaurant changes owners

By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

One of Orléans most popular Lebanese food restaurants has changed owners, but regulars fear not, the old owner plans to stick around for awhile to ensure that the quality the establishment has become famous for will continue.

Fadi and Marcelle Nasr first opened Cedar Valley Lebanese Food in the Orleans Garden Shopping Plaza on Dec. 2, 2002. Fourteen years and thousands of shawarmas later they are hanging up their aprons. Well, at least, Marcelle is. Fadi will continue to support the new owners half days as the food operations manager.

New owners Haytham (second from right) and Georges Rahmeh are taking over the Cedar Valley Lebanese Food restaurant from Fadi and Marcelle Nasr who are retiring after running the establishment for 14 years. Fred Sherwin/Photo

The keys to the restaurant officially changed hands on Thursday. For Marcelle, who plans to relax for a few months after spending seven hours a day, six days a week in the restaurant, it was a day to reflect on what she and Fadi had built together over the past 12 years with their daughter Jessica and son Georges, who were 12 and 17 when they opened and are both married now.

"Jessica and Georges grew up here. This was their second home," said Marcelle. "There are a lot of memories here. A lot of good memories."

Marcelle said she will miss the customers the most, and the sense of community operating the restaurant gave her.

"When we opened the restaurant my first thought was that the customers are like my friends and now they are like my family, or the Cedar Valley family."

The new owners are brothers Haytham and Georges Rahmeh. Haytham has a background in hotel and restaurant management, working at one of the most prestigious hotels in Lebanon in his 20s and early 30s, and Georges has a background in marketing and social media.

The two men are committed to maintaining the highest level of service and quality of food that Cedar Valley's customers have come to count on every time they walk through the door.

"We want people to know that we are family people too and we don't want to let Fadi and Marcelle down. This is their child, they raised it from a baby and they are handing it over to us know, so it's a big responsibility," said Haytham. "Which is why it was so important that Fadi stays on for a while to help us and to ensure that the quality stays the same.."

Looking toward the future, the two men hope to promote the restaurant more as an option for local businesses when deciding what to have for lunch. They also plan to survey the customers on possibly expanding the menu and adding more items.

"We may add a few things, but only after we listen to the customers," said Georges.

For now it's all about maintaining the status quo and getting to know the people who made Cedar Valley a five-time winner of the Peoples Choice Business Awards -- the customers.

(This story was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local business partners.)

 

 

   

 


Posted Jan. 12



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