Developers Hope to Open Troy's First Hookah Bar

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By Brittany Bivins

It's a trend that's sweeping college towns across the country, and now Troy may soon be home to a hookah bar. A hookah is a water pipe that has been popular for centuries in parts of the Middle East, which burns a type of flavored tobacco.

However, opponents say it's a gateway to more dangerous substances. Richard Jones is a co-partner for the proposed Aposha Café and Hooka Lounge. He says the type of tobacco used in hookah is milder than other forms.

"It's called shisha, which is a flavored tobacco, and there's many different flavors, such as strawberry, pineapple, peach mango, and it's not even as strong as a cigar, it's very light, very light," said Jones.

Earlier this week, the council put off a vote on whether to grant a liquor license to the hookah bar. Several members said they wanted to get more information about hookah before making that decision.

"I just want the council to see that this is just another venue that we're trying to bring to some diversity to the downtown area, a more relaxed environment. Our main goal is to make this basically a central location for the college students and businesses professionals here in Troy," said Jones.

The Troy City Council is scheduled to decide whether to grant the license at its next meeting later in april. If approved, developers hope to open the hookah bar in downtown Troy in May.

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