By Vanesa Brashier, email@example.com
No one wants a trip to the hospital, but people soon will have three great new reasons to visit Texas Emergency Hospital in Cleveland. The hospital, located at 300 E. Crockett St., is replacing its traditional cafeteria with Luby’s Restaurant, Fuddruckers Burgers and Starbucks coffee shop.
“Our main focus will continue to be patient care and safety, and providing our patients with good food. We are just so excited about getting to do this for the community,” said Patti Foster, chief operating officer for Emergency Hospital Systems, LLC, the parent company of Texas Emergency Hospital and Cleveland Emergency Hospital, 1017 S. Travis Ave.
The hospital has contracted operation of the three restaurants through Luby’s Culinary Services, which uses all the same recipes as the original Luby’s restaurants and Fuddruckers Burgers. Luby’s and Fuddruckers will operate under the same umbrella in the former cafeteria while Starbucks will be placed in the former gift shop next door to the cafeteria. All will be open to the public for dine-in or carryout.
The restaurants will be modeled after ones currently in LBJ and Ben Taub hospitals in Houston, and University Hospital and Kindred Hospital in San Antonio. Luby’s Culinary Service has roughly 30 similar-style restaurants among hospitals, acute care centers and senior living centers in the southern United States, and the market continues to grow.
“People know when they come in here they will get their favorite liver and onions, chicken-fried steak or lemon and basil chicken. We will have all the iconic recipes they have known and loved for years,” said Gregory Eatchel, regional director of operations for Luby’s Culinary Services. “We plan to offer two Luby’s entrees per days, plus a chef’s special.”
Made-to-order salads and Fuddruckers burgers and chicken sandwiches also are on the menu.
“You can come here, put your order in and get a Fuddruckers burger just like the ones at other Fuddruckers restaurants,” Eatchel said. “The thing about our burgers is they aren’t sitting in a window under a heat lamp. We are all about fresh. That’s the thing about our salads, too. We make them fresh.”
The restaurant will have a grand opening on Monday, Nov. 11. Some modifications will be needed on the space that will be used for the Starbucks shop, so it will officially open at a later date.
“The Starbucks equipment has been ordered. We will be offering Starbucks brewed coffee in the restaurant until we get our full-service Starbucks up and running,” he said. “Once it is ready, it will be open to the public, so people can walk in, get their coffee, hot chocolate or tea and be on their way. We will also have pastries and seasonal items in the Starbucks shop.”
With the nearest Starbucks to Cleveland in the Kingwood area, Foster believes the coffee shop will be a hit.
“We are hoping within a month to six weeks that the Starbucks will be open. We are looking forward to getting started on it,” she said. “Our staff is elated and our patient satisfaction will go through the roof.”
The restaurant will provide meals to the patients staying in the hospital, though some modifications will be made to ensure the meals are within the dietary guidelines.
“The portion sizes for patients have been altered to meet hospital standards. You have to be really aware of what you are serving to patients because of their dietary requirements,” Eatchel said.
The restaurant will be open from 7 to 9:30 a.m. for breakfast and from 11 to 1:30 p.m. for lunch. At this time, the restaurant will closed on evenings and weekends but the hours may be extended and adjusted as needed. The Starbucks shop will have extended hours, so when the restaurant is closed, some food items like salads, yogurt parfaits and pastries will still be available.
The restaurant also offers catering services for parties and events with local delivery.