Living Design

Food Hall for All:

Food halls are popping up left and right, and places like Parlor make it easy to understand why. The first food hall in Kansas City, Mo., Parlor opened its doors (and seven kitchens) to the public in September 2018.

More than expanding the city’s cuisine offerings, commercial developer Meriwether Cos. wanted to create a local-centric place with something for all ages and backgrounds. From young families, to artists, musicians, sports fanatics and business professionals, the goal was to deliver a concept that could serve the entire community. A location in the city’s beloved Crossroads Arts District could not have been a better match. A 1920s building presented the Parlor team with the opportunity to rejuvenate a long-standing fixture in the district. With the specific goal of creating “the home of the Crossroads,” our design team worked alongside the client to form a hospitality concept inspired by residential spaces.

To comfortably accommodate both lounge and dining areas, the space was conceptually divided into sections mirroring the rooms you’d often find in a home. The ‘living room’ and ‘den’ spaces greet guests upon entering, and are distinguished by elements like a faux fireplace, plush seating, coffee tables and book shelves lined with books, knick-knacks and historic maps of Kansas City. A 32-foot bar guides guests through the first of two floors featuring a few of the seven dining concepts available for patrons enjoy. Beneath the first floor, the basement is home to 2,500 sq. ft. of event space.

Upstairs, the rest of the kitchen concepts and larger dining area are connected to the second-floor bar via a shuffle board and stadium seating. Beyond the bar, a covered patio was added and gives guests a unique view of the Crossroads and downtown Kansas City. Skylights were added in to increase the amount of natural light.

Throughout both floors, original elements were preserved and repurposed, including the wood garage doors on the first floor, brick walls and flooring. Quirky artwork and murals by local artists are visual highlights further connecting Parlor to its local context. The layout is simple for guests to navigate, and the use of color in both art and furnishings is playful and energetic, matching the spirit of the Crossroads. This project was an extensive collaboration between Hufft’s Design and Fabrication divisions. In addition to architecture, interior design, FF&E and accessory styling, both bars, all of the booth seating and multiple dining tables were designed and fabricated in-house by our shop.

With seven culinary concepts, two full bars and plenty of comfortable seating, Parlor caters to the business lunch or happy hour as easily as it does a game day watch party. With a family-friendly atmosphere and residential-inspired design, “home of the Crossroads” feels like a fitting description.

View the full project