Naya location opens near Baruch

Fariha Alam

Naya opened a new location by the corner of East 23rd Street and Park Avenue on May 3, offering customers the chance to sample the restaurant chain’s Lebanese cuisine.

Located at 46A East 23rd St., the restaurant celebrated its opening by displaying white and green balloons and giving the first 50 customers a free meal. Additionally, orders were discounted at 50% from May 3 to May 5.

Including this new storefront in the Flatiron District, Naya has 18 locations in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania, with two more locations set to open as of May 10.

On its menu, Naya’s entrees include rolls, bowls and salads with pita, rice, vegetables, falafels and Middle Eastern-styled meat such as shawarma, kafta and shish taouk. Customers can also find hummus, baba ghannouj, kalamata olives, labne cream cheese, fatayer pies and sambousik jebne pastries. For dessert, there’s baklava and nammoura.

Prices for meals at the Flatiron District location range between $9 and $13, minus taxes and service fees.

Naya operates in a casual, fast-paced environment with counters where customers order as the server assembles the dish. It works in a similar fashion as other fast-casual restaurant chains with locations in the Flatiron District, such as Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc., Flip’d by IHOP and Cava, making the lunch-time rush for in-person office workers more seamless.

“When people came back to the office, they were craving our food,” Naya Founder Hady Kfoury told The Wall Street Journal in a 2022 interview.

Kfoury founded Naya in New York City in 2008.

When he spoke with The Wall Street Journal in 2022, Kfoury said it was risky to open new restaurants during the COVID-19 pandemic. While few people worked in person and spent money in the city, he had to negotiate with landlords. But stakeholders of the chain noted opening new locations would cost less and add value to their investment.

Since the height of the pandemic, office occupancy in New York City has risen 16.1% for the first three months of this year, according to the real estate firm JLL. But the amount of leased spaces is at 4.6 million square feet, which The City reported as the lowest amount since the start of 2021.

Naya also opened a place in the NoMad neighborhood on April 5 with the same promotion offered in the Flatiron District location.

In addition to its delicious food, Naya offers rewards to frequent customers through its mobile app. People can earn a $5 credit on their first order on the app and a $9 credit each time they spend $100.

The new location is open Monday through Friday between 11 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. It is closed on weekends.