Rice Village’s very buzzy food hall Politan Row Houston is getting closer to its fall opening, and now Eater has a glimpse into what the project from the team behind NOLA’s legendary St. Roch Market will look like. Check out a rendering of the indoor-outdoor, 7,350-square-foot dining hall, which will be located at 2445 Times Boulevard. The plan is for Politan Row Houston to include 12 unique vendors, with 10 outposts from chefs, a coffee shop, and a craft cocktail ball called Bar Politan.
The Politan Group has opened similar food halls in Miami and Chicago, and is now on the hunt for talented Houston chefs and entrepreneurs looking to explore potential new projects at Politan Row Houston.
Politan Group’s CEO & Founder Will Donaldson answered a few burning questions via email about his new project in Houston, and why he thinks it will stand out from Houston’s recent influx of food halls:
What’s the vibe you’re going for with the design/decor at Politan Row Houston?
The building has a waffle slab ceiling and was built in the 60s, so we decided to do a mid-century inspired project with this go round to match those elements. The bar is centered and of green marble. Some other tones for the project are blush pink and copper. I am very excited about this design, personally. I feel it is our most gorgeous yet.
What’s your criteria for choosing vendors?
We pick people, first. Obviously, we are mission-driven company and we like to work with up-and-coming chefs that inspire us in their pursuit of creativity. What’s great about how our halls work, is that you don’t have to be famous or already have 12 other concepts and you don’t need a lot of money. One just needs to have technical skill, a good attitude, and passion for hospitality. Our projects are unique each time, so the fun part for us to work with other people that also celebrate craftsmanship.
What will differentiate Politan Row Houston from other food halls in Houston?
When we opened up in Chicago recently, it really surprised us how people saw us so differently than other food halls. We’re a hang out spot. We have enough seating. The spaces are comfortable. Food is served on real plateware, and people greet you at the door. We believe in a solid hospitality-focused experience-oriented around dining. We want regulars who like to explore food the way we do. One of my proudest moments was when someone recently said they wish they could move into our food hall. I realized that we were really giving people something special for a good value.