Urban8 opened August 23 with hopes to be one of North Texas’ hottest dining and entertainment destinations. The 8,500-square-foot freestanding food court in The Colony offers eight chef-driven dining options.
It is the first location of its kind, but owner Stanley Rose is planning at least a dozen more in the future. The second location is already in the works at the Allen Premium Outlets, estimated to be complete in March 2019.
One of Stanley’s primary goals was to create a space where healthy options could be found, even for diners in a pinch for time. Limiting each location to eight unique menus (thus, the name) Stanley also wanted to keep the space small enough to feel comfy and cozy.
“I want everyone that comes in to feel like they just walked in to their friend’s living room for dinner and drinks,” said Stanley. With any food court, comparisons to Plano’s Legacy Hall are inevitable. But Stanley says, “To me, there is no comparison. We are two different concepts altogether. We are more like a living room, a ‘stretch out and relax’ type of place.” And parking at Urban8 is much easier and quicker, no doubt.
All eight eateries are locally owned, bringing their own spin to Urban8. The Colony’s location includes Burger Craft, Rustic Flatbreads, Taco Cielo, Pho Corner, Beyond the Box, Monster Yogurt, Firewheel Coffee and STIR.
Brian Wells, owner of Firewheel Coffee, said Stanley takes care of all the behind-the-scenes details such as security, utilities, WiFi, building maintenance and more, which frees up the restaurant owners to focus solely on their businesses. “Stanley has really come up with a winning concept here,” said Brian. “By taking on those responsibilities himself, his Urban8 vendors are free to dedicate all their resources to customer service, to making the best food and drinks possible and to being better at what they already do best.”
Urban8 also aims to be more than just a place to eat. A small stage with two pianos is situated in the center of the building for dueling pianos, live music and trivia; a 147-inch TV screen hovers above the bar for watch parties and movie nights. Stanley plans on having some sort of entertainment every night of the week.
Ava Skipworth, owner of Monster Yogurt, believes that Urban8 is community centered in a unique way. “Being surrounded by other local restaurant owners that are working to grow their brands is energizing,” said Ava. “Having a group of owners that want to serve superior food and be the best, plus provide great customer service, makes a huge difference.”Urban8 >