Looking towards Manhattan as far back as 1998, the widely established Long Island restaurateurs, Rajiv and Payal Sharma, ventured to open PRANNA—a unique and awe-inspiring restaurant that would bridge the cuisines of Southeast Asia with the American palette. Conveniently situated in the heart of Manhattan, PRANNA is their ideal vision of a modern Southeast Asian restaurant, bar and lounge that embraces their appreciation for delicious cooking and cocktails—and all that is salty, sour, spicy and sweet.

Rajiv Sharma comes from a large family that has owned and operated restaurants in his native India for over fifty years. After receiving an MBA and working in finance, Rajiv changed paths when he and his wife decided to open a restaurant of their own. As President, he now stands at the helm of his business—“hands-on” and personally involved in almost every respect.

Payal Sharma—who has a background in communications and marketing for fashion and entertainment—is a hip-and-trendy mother of three who has spent the past five years following food blogs and monitoring trends, while building personal relationships throughout the city. She has an innate understanding and appreciation for the hospitality industry which makes her a natural fit for the front of house—and the other side of the velvet rope.

After more than 10 years of operating successful concepts on Long Island—catering private events as large as 5000—opening a 15,000 sq foot venue was a challenge that the Sharmas were eager to take on... Three years ago they chose Madison Avenue as their new business address and after many months of construction, renovations and consultations with the best-of-the-best, they were thrilled to finally open PRANNA’s doors in October of 2008.

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