“WHAT’S ONE OF THE HOTTEST ATTRACTIONS AT MUSEUMS?” a recent Wall Street Journal article posed. The answer: “The Restaurant.” Across the country, museum restaurants and cafes have become hip destinations, offering a curated, extended museum experience that goes beyond just a gallery stroll to view the art on display.
At UMMA, art and people embody our twinned mission: we believe art needs a public, and people need art. But museums also need social spaces that transition us from the galleries to the world outside, from art to our “everyday” lives. Nearly all of UMMA’s visitors come with friends or family, and they want a place to meet and linger, to talk about the art they’ve seen, to recharge over a meal or nibble.
Beginning in June, we’re proud to open UMMA Cafe with the drum roll it deserves. We’re happy to offer you healthy salads, sandwiches, bento boxes, espresso drinks, UMMA’s signature coffee, tea, and of course pastries. Better yet: most menu items won’t be available anywhere else on campus. In the coming months we’ll also be programming UMMA Cafe with music, talks, and special offers and events.
UMMA Cafe is part of a ramp-up of thinking about how to make the Museum welcoming and accessible, how to address the needs of both students and the community, essentially how to make UMMA hospitable and lively, full of unexpected pleasures. UMMA Cafe is a two-year pilot project in partnership with Michigan Dining, made possible thanks to the great generosity of Paola Luptak (AB ’88), a leading advocate and volunteer for the Museum.
Come by, eat something, hang out a little, and let us know what you think!