Earlier this summer, Rick and Robbin Wells, founders of the Wells Group, made several purchases from their partner and mentor Don Day. The first was the Masonic Lodge building located at 215 Kentucky St. in downtown McKinney. Second, they acquired the Grand Hotel & Ballroom at 114 W. Louisiana St. in downtown McKinney. The Wellses have been part of the Grand Hotel for years with their restaurant Rick’s Chophouse serving as the hotel’s food and beverage partner. Rick's Chophouse is located at 107 N. Kentucky St., McKinney.
With the purchases, Wells plans to relocate Harvest from its location at 112 E. Louisiana St., McKinney, to the Masonic Lodge property and expand the restaurant to a three-story concept.
“A couple of years ago I really started wanting to expand Harvest’s footprint,” Wells said. “I wanted to enlarge the bar—we had a great beverage program—and I just felt like it needed a bigger space.”
When he saw the Masonic Lodge property, he knew this would be Harvest’s future home, he said.
At its current location, Harvest spans 6,500 square feet. Following the move, the restaurant will expand to 10,400 square feet across three floors.
The first floor will seat 80 guests and will maintain a similar atmosphere to the original Harvest, Wells said, adding it looks almost identical to Harvest’s current configuration. The second floor will open to a kitchen and be home to a tasting room and private dining space for up to 52 guests. This will include a zero-waste design, cheese and charcuterie aging display rooms and sightlines to McKinney’s cultural district. The third floor will seat up to 150 guests and be known as The Masonic and serve as a live music venue. It will feature local, regional and national music acts, and the bar will be home to an extensive Texas whiskey and tequila collection.
If everything moves on schedule and the supply chain holds up, Harvest will be in its new home in time for its eighth anniversary in the fall of 2022, Wells said.
Changes are in store down the street at the Grand Hotel as well, Wells said. The Wells Group plans to update the hotel and provide a curated experience in each of the hotel’s 49 rooms, he said.
“The hotel’s always been a really nice hotel, but we are going to just try and take it up another notch,” Wells said.
Hotel guests can also be guided from a hospitality standpoint all the way through each experience at the hotel, Wells said. The Wells Group is also looking at an extensive remodel to elevate amenities further while preserving the hotel as an iconic boutique destination in North Texas. The hotel and Rick’s Chophouse went through a renovation in August as part of those efforts.
“We’re slowly but surely renovating the property,” he said.
In a news release, Wells stated that these two projects partner with the Wells Group’s other owned entities, including Water Boy Farms—which supplies the food to Harvest—the Wells Group’s Goddard Schools, the Seed Project Foundation—which funds initiatives that support sustainability—and local donation garden McKinney Roots. Taking on these two properties was something he could not pass up on, Wells said.
“I feel like it’s the best investment I ever made, because I truly believe what McKinney is—what it stands for, where it’s going—I think it’s one of the best places to do business in the world,” Wells said.
More information about Harvest is available by calling 214-726-0251 or by visiting www.harvesttx.com. More information about the Grand Hotel is available by calling 214-726-9250 or by visiting www.grandhotelmckinney.com.