April 29, 2020 —After several months of construction and renovations, we’re getting closer to the grand re-opening of the new and improved Anderson Dining Facility.
“We moved [dining] up to Kendal Hall on June 14th, so it’s been quite a couple of months,” says Culinary Director Judy Kurtz. “I think the residents are ready to get back downstairs.”
One thing’s for sure: the wait is certainly going to be worth it. Judy says the dining staff is excited about the changes and can’t wait for the residents to experience the new space. One feature she’s especially looking forward to is the new hot food buffet line and a new exposition cooking space. This will allow the dining team to serve such items as made-to-order omelets or wok meals or create a custom pasta bar.
More Room, More Seats
Perhaps the biggest change residents can expect is the increased amount of seating and a new layout for seating areas. The previous seating capacity was approximately 106 seats. The largest and most centrally located addition will add another 1,817 square feet of dining space and around 45 additional seats. North of this addition, there will also be another 505 square foot addition that includes 16 seats relocated from the previous dining area. South of this addition will be a 330 square foot addition containing a small Café and 16 more seats.
“The old dining room was one big room, so it got very loud,” Judy says. “I think the separate seating areas will be a really positive improvement.”
Another feature that will help with the noise level in the dining room will be the addition of acoustic panel wall treatments and decorative acoustic ceiling baffles. These touches will help to ensure that a bigger dining room doesn’t mean a louder dining room. Luckily, with more choices for seating areas, residents will be able to cultivate a dining experience that suits them best.
For instance, the roof of the large dining addition will soon also include a rooftop terrace with even more seating. Residents will be able to sit outside, enjoy the open air and take in the mountain views.
Bigger and Brighter
Plus, one change that should allow residents to fill their plates more easily: there will now be two serving lines instead of just one. With more space to move around, this should help the food service area feel less crowded and easier to navigate.
However, amidst all the excitement and anticipation about the renovations, Judy also urges the residents to continue utilizing comment cards to communicate with the dining staff. “I can only improve if I know what their needs are,” she says. Even small suggestions — like requesting an entrée that hasn’t been served in awhile — are encouraged.
For now, it’s just a matter of waiting for the expansion and renovation to be complete. Residents will soon be able to enjoy the benefits of more seating space, redesigned décor and new features, like the Café and rooftop terrace. In short, there’s a lot to be excited about.
“I think it’s going to be very welcoming and home-like,” Judy says of the new space. “It’ll be bright, it’ll be colorful and there’s going to be a lot of natural light. It’s going to be wonderful.”