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For 22-Year-Old, His Business is His Passion

Bilal Aledlbi opened Warminster's first hookah bar in November 2011.

From the outside 64 Evergreen Road looks like a typical small strip mall, which can be found with ease in suburban towns like Warminster.

However, inside the simple brick-faced building sits one of Warminster newest nightlife hot spots - Blue Eye Hookah Bar.

The hookah lounge, which opened in November of 2011, is owned and operated by 22-year-old Warminster resident and 2009 graduate Bilal Aledlbi.

What is a hookah: "An oriental tobacco pipe with a long, flexible tube that draws the smoke through water contained in a bowl," according to the Collins Birmingham University International Language Database.

While smoking out of a hookah has been popular in other parts of the world for thousands of years, recently, its popularity has grown in the United States, a recent CNN.com story reported.

The young entrepreneur said he was first introduced to hookah when he was a teenager in the Middle East.

“It’s a Middle Eastern style of relaxation,” he said of the practice, which is often done in large groups. “It’s laidback.”

At Blue Eye, customers, who are charged $10, can sit back with friends on the establishment's couches and choose from one of 25 flavors of tobacco to smoke.

“(Smoking flavored tobacco out of a hookah) tastes good, and it’s something to do that’s fun and not illegal,” customer Jen Kinney, of Feasterville, said.

Blue Eye Hookah Bar, which has a tobacco license, does not serve alcohol. Therefore, anyone of the age of 18 is permitted to enter and smoke.

Now that the hookah lounge, which Bilal calls his "passion," has been open for a few months, business is picking up and Bilal said he is getting to know what his customers want.

In the coming months, he plans to add belly dancers, DJ parties and video game nights. Those would be in addition to the Friday open mic night events and local indie film screenings the bar host.

“I like to support local business; local artist,” Bilal said.

Many of the walls in the bar are covered with detailed, modern murals from Warminster-based artist John Groves.

Often, local musicians and comedians can be found performing as customers sit around the hookahs.

Bilal, who studied biology at Bucks County Community College, said he had an idea to open a hookah bar in the back of his head but, in fall of 2011, he turned thoughts into actions and secured a lease for two storefronts on Evergreen Avenue.

“The landlord worked with me; he gave me advice.”

One thing Bilal said he learned when working to open his business: “You need to be confident.”

JSmith April 25, 2012 at 04:09 PM
Why are we promoting a business that encourages people to smoke? Has Warminster Patch missed the memo that smoking is unhealthy? Are parents aware of this hookah bar? How diligent is the bar owner about carding those who come in to smoke?
b April 25, 2012 at 04:21 PM
Alcohol is just as unhealthy and way more dangerous. Are parents aware of all of the bars in Warminster? How diligently do the bar owners card at those establishments? (because i can tell you, it's probably less diligently than this business owner) Whether you agree with the business or not is not the issue here. A young man is doing something that not many people his age even think of doing and he deserves a little bit of spotlight for it.
Brittttttttany April 25, 2012 at 10:04 PM
Jenn stop hating, smoke some hookah and chilllllll. Ya digggg
Dayzie Cutter April 25, 2012 at 10:21 PM
As the owner of the company that runs open mic night and indie film night here every friday and every other wednesday, I don't see this place as a place that promotes smoking as much as it promotes local artist. We have people who don't smoke at all come in just to perform and show their films they made just so they can get their work out there
Pamela April 26, 2012 at 01:54 PM
I'd much rather have this place than some of the bars on York road that the police are always at....I guess sitting back relaxing watching dancers, playing videos and hanging with friends is not as desirable as fist fights, public urination, and public drunkiness...
Pamela April 26, 2012 at 01:59 PM
It has been opened since November 2011 and there has not been any problems with it. The same can't be said for some other establishment in our area. As to the promotion of smoking..Update some people want to smoke and since we are over 18 how about you let us make our own adult decisions.
Helene April 26, 2012 at 03:17 PM
They don't need to serve alochol because Walsh's Tavern is 10 steps away!
KevinF April 26, 2012 at 07:50 PM
I applaud him! How many 22 year old recent grads can say they even have a job in this economy, let alone something they can call their "passion." I don't think patch is encouraging smoking as Jen believes. Patch is encouraging a young entrepreneur who is following their dreams.
Deb K April 27, 2012 at 02:52 PM
Copy cat hookah bar...we all know were his ideas came from...
Rachel May 09, 2012 at 06:40 AM
i mean, someones jealous and has a guilty conscience if they have to google the hookah bar and make a rude and false comment.
Λάρισα June 04, 2012 at 06:52 PM
Hookah tobacco is far less dangerous than cigarettes because it doesn't have as many carcinogens. This is just another freedom that we, as Americans, are entitled to. ;)

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