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Restaurant type

  • Fine Dining,
  • Lounge,
  • Bar,

Cuisine type

  • Middle-eastern,
  • International,
  • Mediterranean,

Dishes

  • Sandwich,
  • Burgers,

Features

  • Take-out,
  • Online Menu,
  • Restaurant With Delivery Services,

Atmosphere

  • Romantic,
  • Intimate,
  • Casual,

Products and Services

  • Order Online,
  • Order Delivery,

Languages Spoken

  • English,
  • Arabic,
Location
112B 8 Avenue SW, Calgary, AB T2P 1B3
Useful Information

Opening Hours *Holiday hours

Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
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Rates:

  • $11 To $25,

Methods of Payment:

Meet the owner

Situated between the historic, turn of the century Molson Bank and Hudson’s Block buildings on Stephen Avenue Walk, and sharing a tenancy with the Western Store and Calgary Shoe Hospital, is a Syrian restaurant that’s both an emerging casual-dining hotspot and an apt reminder of downtown Calgary’s ever-changing dynamic.

Surrounded by historic sandstone architecture and Cowboy paraphernalia, A La Saj, which opened in January of 2013, offers a fresh take on downtown eats. Tastefully casual, the bright, narrow space is inviting. As Arabic house music pumps through the sound system, you notice the simple yet effective decorative touches: gleaming white walls, black chandeliers and vintage black-and-white photographs in an assortment of frames hung salon-style throughout the seating area.

Manager Mohammad Elsabek explains that the images are of The Oriental Club, an award-winning eatery in Syria on which A La Saj is based. A fast-paced lunch spot by day, the restaurant shifts into a lower gear by night when the lights are dimmed, the volume of the music goes up and the shishas come out. “At lunch, people are in a hurry, they cannot wait, but in the evening we are relaxed,” says Mohammad of the shift from convenience to comfort. Additionally, on weekends, the restaurant brings in a variety of types of live musical entertainers who perform traditional Syrian fare as well as contemporary western songs. Music includes oud performances (a mandolin-like instrument) and a weekly dabake night (a type of Arabic dance) in the former category, as well as DJs and karaoke in the latter.

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A busy Syrian lunch spot on Stephen Avenue Walk by day, A La Saj brings out the shisha pipes by night and dials up the cultural accompaniment. Evenings feature live performances by traditional Syrian folk musicians as well as contemporary Western DJs and karaoke.

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