SHRINER'S SHINY NEW CAFÉ. The specialty carving/food-to-order (top) and 360° soup/salad/hot dessert stations.
Shriners Hospitals for Children in Chicago-has opened a new café that maintainsthe hospital focus on easy access and nutrition variety specifically designed for kids. Shriners is one of a system of 22 hospitals that treat children with neuromusculoskeletal conditions free of charge.
Funded by the Shrine of North America, the 210,000-sq.ft. café was part of a $32.4 million renovation and addition project. Nutrition Service Director Greathel Bowdery was one of the café's main designers.
The space was laid out to provide for a variety of new services, including a salad/soup/hot dessert bar with 360° access, a specialty station that doubles as a carving station and allows for food made to order.
Among other features are a hot drink bar, a smoothie station, and a healthy snack area. The newly added 360° accessible checkout island helps maintain a timely flow for all customers.
"Often, children's hospitals have to resort to fast food to get kids eating," says Elise Wachspress, public and community relations director, "but here we strongly believe in healthy food presented in the most attractive ways possible."
As a result of the renovations the first eight months in the new café have improved patient and parent satisfaction scores from 76.6 to 94.2 on a scale of 100 and the number of meals served has increased by 19% with a revenue increase of 23%.