Former K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen building is sold

The French Quarter building that housed K-Paul’s Louisiana Kitchen has been sold, two years after one of the most notable pandemic closures in New Orleans’ hospitality industry.

Robert Thompson, a hotelier and developer who entered the New Orleans market in recent years, purchased the building at 416 Chartres St., according to a press release. He plans to turn it into a French Quarter Boulangerie, an all-day breakfast, lunch and bakery, according to the statement. Its opening is scheduled for the second half of 2023.

The restaurant will also offer pastries, croissants, breads, desserts and coffee to go, the statement said, as well as wines, beers and cocktails. He describes the future of the 12,060-square-foot space as “food hall-style counter service with an emphasis on fresh breads, pastries and iconic southern and classic French dishes influenced by the history of the neighborhood. French”.

Thompson’s partners in the venture include equity loan provider OnPath Credit Union and Ohio-based developer GBX Group.

K-Paul’s, established in 1979 by the late chef Paul Prudhomme and his wife Kay, closed along with other restaurants as the pandemic forced closures. Its owners said in July 2020 that the restaurant would close permanently and retire its name.

Originally built in 1864, the three-story building was completely renovated in 1996, with seating expanded to accommodate over 200 people. It has two full kitchens, a prep kitchen and bakery, a covered outdoor gallery on the second floor, and a 2,260 square foot third floor with separate elevator access that could be used as a multifamily or office space, according to an online listing.

A sale price was not disclosed. The listing listed a price of $6.5 million.

Thompson has been involved in the restaurant, tourism and hospitality industry for 32 years. A native of Mississippi, he founded and developed Punch Bowl Social over a decade ago, a Denver, Colorado-based entertainment concept that featured food, craft beer, cocktails and games such as bowling and shuffleboard. The chain, which had 20 units at its peak in 2019, filed for bankruptcy in December 2020. Thompson resigned from his position with the company in August 2020.

He moved to New Orleans in 2021, bought the Frenchmen Hotel at 417 Frenchmen St., and spent $4.5 million to rehab the 27-room hotel and improve its dining options.

In December, Thompson and GBX Group reached an agreement to acquire the Whitney Hotel at 610 Poydras St. in the central business district from New Orleans hotelier Joe Jaeger for $16.9 million. Thompson plans to renovate the building’s interior and add a restaurant and craft cocktail bar.

Thompson’s hotel company, Angevin & Co., also owns Midnight Revival Bar, a bar and entertainment venue at The Frenchmen Hotel, and Three Saints Revival Restaurant in Denver.

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