This Saturday Michigan’s statewide smoking ban takes effect. For some, this will be a “breath of fresh air” but for others like The Hookah Lounge owner Emad Shatara, he stands to lose a fair percentage of business. He has already had to let some of the staff go.
Hookah for those of you who may not know is a pipe connected with flexible tubes to a container that houses (usually flavored) tobacco where the smoke is cooled and filtered through a water bath.
Historically, this form of tobacco use goes back millions of years in several ethnic groups, and is considered a cultural as well as social tradition.
At this time Shatara has filed for a Tobacco Specialty Store license, this will allow him to still sell Hookah, but he will no longer be able to sell food or drinks.
This new state law does make casinos and cigar bars exempt, however it does not apply to The Hookah Lounge or anything like it at this time.