Ahmed Alkhaldi, the owner of Palmyra Restaurant & Lounge, previously worked at an Arabic restaurant that had a similar concept to Palmyra. He was a manager there for a few years during college and he fell in love with the job. The only part of his area of work that he disliked was that many Arabic spaces were not accepting of the LGBTQ+ community.
As a member of the LGBTQ+ community himself, Ahmed recognized the need for an all-inclusive safe space for people like him to enjoy Arabic food, smoke hookah, listen to Middle Eastern Music, and have wine, but also be able to hold and kiss their loved ones without feeling judgment or shame.
From this idea, Palmyra Restaurant & Lounge was born. Today Ahmed describes Palmyra as “a safe haven that is judgment free.”
The lounge opened less than a year ago, but has already earned a stunning reputation, attracting all types of people from Wilton Manors and surrounding areas.
The menu at Palmyra embodies authentic Middle Eastern food and Arabic culture. Patrons can begin their meal with an appetizer like fresh hummus, falafel, baba ghannouj, or an Arabic salad. For entrees, there are a variety of choices including kabobs, shawarma, and sandwiches. Meals can be paired with soda, Arabic coffee, Arabic tea, wine, or beer and finished with a sweet bite for dessert.
According to Ahmed, one of the best-selling entrees is the Mix Grill. He explains, “It is a great option to try three different items at one price”. The Mix Grill comes with beef kabob, kefta kebab, and chicken kebab. Their homemade hummus is also a massive hit.
The food is authentic and always fresh, but it is also affordable. Ahmed explains that he tries to keep the prices low and affordable so everyone can come and enjoy what the restaurant has to offer.
Palmyra Restaurant & Lounge posts daily specials on their Facebook and Instagram where you can get further deals and savings. You can also join them Tuesday – Sunday from 4-7 P.M for discounted beer, wine, and appetizers.
The restaurant and lounge can accommodate large parties as well as private parties for up to 75 people who want to rent out the space for special events. They even offer catering, too.
Palmyra has so much more to offer besides just mouthwatering Middle Eastern cuisine – the restaurant also doubles as a Hookah lounge. They have large, comfy couches and spacious tables where groups of friends can gather to smoke Hookah and socialize.
Patrons can choose from a variety of Hookah flavors such as Lemon, Mint, Orange, and Strawberry, or they can try the house blend known as “360 flavors.” The house blend is a delicate mixture of berries, orange, mint, and a hint of vanilla.
Best of all, the lounge isn’t filled with thick smoke like most other Hookah bars are, Palmyra invested in two powerful smoke eaters to keep the smoke at a minimum.
Delicious food and relaxing hookah aren’t all Palmyra Restaurant & Lounge has to offer. They also have live entertainment on Friday and Saturday nights. Talented belly dancers interact with the crowds as they show off their skills and live music sets the mood.
Palmyra is a great place to go to enjoy an evening out with loved ones and experience Middle Eastern culture.
Next time you’re craving some delicious food, check our Palmyra Restaurant and Lounge in person at 2031 Wilton Dr. Be sure to check their Facebook or Instagram first to see what entertainment is happening that night–you definitely don’t want to miss out on the live music and belly dancing!
Palmyra is also available on DoorDash, Uber Eats, and Grub Hub.
Cassidy Webb is a Texas native and South Florida transplant. She grew up just outside of Dallas, TX, and moved to South Florida four years ago. She now considers Fort Lauderdale her home.
Cassidy is the project manager at a small digital marketing company and she enjoys freelance writing on the side. In her free time, you can catch her exploring local parks or taking long walks through the neighborhood with her dog, Bella.