While traveling in Newton last week, my friends and I stopped for lunch at Johnny’s Luncheonette. We were somewhat disappointed because we discovered a few minor problems with wheelchair accessibility. There are no handicap parking spaces in the front of the restaurant so my friends and I parked in a regular parking space on a street around the corner and walked/wheeled to the entry door.

There are two entry doors and both have buttons for an automatic door opener but neither was working so entry was a little difficult. I was in my manual chair so Ric held the door open while Amanda pushed my chair. The first door leads to a foyer and the second door leads into the restaurant. Once we were inside, I asked an employee if the automatic door opener was turned off but was told that they are waiting for repair.

Johnny’s Luncheonette décor is set in a vintage style with a 1950’s motif to the atmosphere. As soon as I entered I saw a bar style counter to the left that I was not able to access for it is too high for my wheelchair. Johnny’s has many booths which are not wheelchair accessible for your wheelchair would stick out in the middle of the aisle and block access for others. A nice hostess led my friends and me to another area that has regular tables and they are all at a good height for my wheelchair. Yet the tables are crowded together so accessing them is a little difficult for there is not much space to maneuver a wheelchair around the tables. Our waitress was very nice and treated me with much respect and always acknowledged me when taking my order. The food was great!

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The restroom is very spacious with the required safety bars at a perfect height. The accessible sink is also at a good height for me to reach from my wheelchair but the soap dispenser and the hand towel dispenser are set too high on the wall and impossible for me to reach. I also noticed that the pipes under the accessible sink are not covered as is now ADA required.

I give Johnny’s Luncheonette THREE STARS for wheelchair accessibility. In order to earn the other Two Stars they would need to; lower a section at the bar style counter; widening the space between the tables; lower the restroom’s soap and towel dispenser; cover the exposed pipes under the accessible sink and repair the automatic entry doors.