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Well-known Bethlehem restaurateur to take over Sangria's spot in Allentown

By , - Last modified: July 25, 2013 at 10:10 AM
Stacy Wescoe: Billy Kounoupis plans to open a restaurant in the recently vacated Sangria.
Stacy Wescoe: Billy Kounoupis plans to open a restaurant in the recently vacated Sangria.

The former Sangria Restaurant in the Butz Corporate Center in Allentown didn't stay vacant long. After closing July 19, a new restaurant has been found to replace it.

Billy Kounoupis, owner of Billy's Downtown Diner, Bethlehem, will be opening a new restaurant at the site on Hamilton Street. He is targeting a September opening after what he called minor renovations are completed.

Kounoupis, whose Bethlehem restaurant is a popular downtown spot for breakfast and lunch, said he is looking forward to also having a presence in Allentown.

"I think Allentown has a very bright future," he said. "I've been interested in Allentown for a long time. I just hadn't found the right spot."

Like Sangria before it, the new restaurant will have outdoor dining on the sidewalk in front of the corporate center.

In fact, it was the availability of the outdoor seating area that most attracted Kounoupis to the space, because he said it would give the restaurant the hip, urban feel he was trying to cultivate.

Like Kounoupis' Bethlehem location, Billy's Allentown location will serve "classic fare with flair" for breakfast and lunch seven days a week.

He said he hopes to expand service to dinner in the very near future.

Because of its size, Kounoupis said the downtown Allentown location also will have the capacity to host business banquets, meetings and events. That's something he's been wanting to do in Bethlehem, but lacked the space.

The restaurant will be on the first floor of the Butz Corporate Center at 840 W. Hamilton St.

Meanwhile, he assures his loyal customers that his Bethlehem location isn't going anywhere. He will, however, be undertaking a major renovation in the near future that will allow him to add 30 seats to the Broad Street restaurant.

Stacy Wescoe

Stacy Wescoe

Writer and online editor Stacy Wescoe has her finger on the pulse of the business community in the Greater Lehigh Valley and keeps you up-to-date with technology and trends, plus what coworkers and competitors are talking about around the water cooler — and on social media. She can be reached at stacyw@lvb.com or 610-807-9619, ext. 104. Follow her on Twitter at @morestacy and on Facebook. Circle Stacy Wescoe on .

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