The revamped Vito’s is opening September 16. Photo courtesy Vito’s.

A little over five years ago Greg Lundgren established what would become First Hill’s favorite drinking destination: The Hideout. In just a few weeks he’ll make another mark in the neighborhood when Vito’s re-opens September 16.

Word came in April Lundgren and business partner Jeff Scott purchased the storied First Hill lounge that had, before closing in early 2009, fallen under spotty repute. Since the purchase the duo has been midwiving massive restorations to the Ninth Avenue restaurant. It was built in 1953 and became a regular hangout for all manners of people (and activities) and an epicenter of cocktail-cool mid-century culture. Despite the huge overhaul, Lundgren has said the touched-up Vito’s will retain the look and feel of its old-school self. Gone is the dance floor, in is a grand piano and room for lounge singers and jazz performers.

Cheffing is Michael Bruno, late of sorta neighbor Tango, who will helm a menu heavy on East coast, Italian–style food. The toque will proffer samples of that menu during the eatery’s opening night bash, which gets underway at 6pm and will showcase a rotating set of musicians. Lundgren’s prediction: “It should be a madhouse.”

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