SEQUOIA & KINGS CANYON NATIONAL PARKS, Calif. (Sept. 28, 2017) – The National Park Service and concessioner Delaware North today dedicated the new Grant Grove Restaurant in Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks, an eatery built with sustainable materials and construction techniques to achieve Leadership in Engineering and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold standards.
Delaware North completed a 10-month, $6.3 million ecofriendly redesign and reconstruction of the restaurant, which opened June 30. The new 8,000-square-foot restaurant accommodates about 225 diners at once in indoor and outdoor seating areas that include an outdoor deck and courtyard. It replaces the original restaurant, which was built in the 1970s with a seating capacity of only 74.
The new structure includes a striking indoor space with high ceilings and large exposed beams, a fireplace, natural wood tables and chairs with color schemes that complement the rockwork, and large windows with improved views of the majestic giant sequoia trees overlooking Bradley Meadow. An open concept floor plan provides a better cooking facility, as well as a more enjoyable and convenient dining area for guests.
The official ribbon cutting was carried out by Laura Joss, Pacific West Regional Director for the National Park Service. Afterward, Woody Smeck, superintendent of Sequoia & Kinds Canyon National Parks, spoke of the investment concessionaires have made to visitor services to parks nationwide.
"This restaurant demonstrates the commitment of national park concessionaires, like Delaware North, to meeting the needs of the visiting public. Today we recognize Delaware North for their central role in completing this new restaurant – a building that will support the experiences and adventures of the visiting public for years to come."
Smeck joined the regional director in presenting Scott Socha, president of Delaware North’s parks and resorts business, a framed photo of a Giant Sequoia. Joss thanked staff from Delaware North and Parks' staff for their efforts in making the new restaurant a reality.
Delaware North anticipates receiving notification on the LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council later this year.
“Delaware North is incredibly proud to have worked with the National Park Service to create an updated, more convenient and more sustainable dining option for visitors to Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks,” Socha said. “Our team used great care in safeguarding the surrounding natural environment and preserving the beautiful setting while enhancing the overall visitor experience.”
A video showing photos of the 10-month construction can be found here: https://youtu.be/Dv1VEp22610. Among the “green” highlights:
- More than 75 percent of the waste generated during construction was diverted from being landfilled.
- Water consumption has been reduced by 40 percent with low-flow plumbing fixtures and landscaping that does not need irrigation.
- The restaurant building is 30 percent more energy efficient than a conventional building, thanks to LED lighting and windows designed to bring the natural light inside.
- Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems were designed to exceed the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) standards for ventilation and thermal comfort.
Socha said Delaware North has also pledged to make the restaurant a zero-waste facility by 2020.
At the ceremony, Delaware North Executive Chef Brandon Bollenbacher and his team offered a sampling of the restaurant’s new menu, which is centered on locally sourced, sustainable and organic ingredients. In addition, it was announced that the restaurant has been certified as a Green Restaurant® by the Green Restaurant Association.
Menu highlights include California-raised grass-fed beef, San Joaquin Valley-raised organic poultry and eggs, and Monterey Bay Aquarium-approved seafood. Local farms and vendors, including Mountain Produce (Fresno, Calif.) and Sierra Seafood (Oakhurst, Calif.), will supply additional meat, poultry, seafood, produce, dairy and grains.
To-go items such as pizza, sandwiches, coffee and ice cream are also available at a walk-up window for those in a rush or wanting to maximize their outdoor time.
Completion of the new Grant Grove Restaurant follows Delaware North’s renovation since 2014 of the Grant Grove Cabins, John Muir Lodge and Cedar Grove Lodge at Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks.
About Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks lie side by side in the southern Sierra Nevada east of the San Joaquin Valley. This dramatic landscape, with elevations ranging from 1,370 to 14,494 feet, testifies to nature's size, beauty, and diversity, with huge mountains, rugged foothills, deep canyons, vast caverns, and the world's largest trees. The park features 14 campgrounds and lodging at Wuksachi Lodge in Sequoia; the John Muir Lodge, Grant Grove Cabins and Cedar Grove Lodge in Kings Canyon; and the Bearpaw Meadow High Sierra Camp. For more information on Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, visit https://www.nps.gov/seki and http://www.visitsequoia.com/.
About Delaware North's parks and resorts business
Delaware North’s parks and resorts business operates lodging, food and beverage and retail services, recreational activities, and educational programming at destinations throughout North America and Australia. Delaware North operates in many of the United States’ iconic national and state parks, including Grand Canyon National Park, Yellowstone National Park and Niagara Falls State Park, as well as at cultural attractions such as Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex. Its portfolio of owned hotels includes lodging properties in park gateway communities and luxury resorts in the United States and Australia. The company’s award-winning environmental stewardship platform, GreenPath®, has been implemented at all of its parks and resorts locations. Delaware North has global operations at high-profile places such as sports and entertainment venues, national and state parks, destination resorts and restaurants, and airports. Learn more about Delaware North at www.delawarenorth.com.