February 23, 2023 -- Please attribute this to the Mayor’s Office of Communications ...
We are disheartened to learn of the inaccuracies and disinformation being spread by Pappas restaurant group.
The City of Houston is not evicting any concessionaire from William P. Hobby Airport. The contract awarded to Four Families in 2002 through a competitive procurement process is set to expire, which is why Houston City Council is currently reviewing a potential 10-year food and beverage concessions contract at Hobby Airport. Four Families is a joint venture among Pappas Restaurants, LaTrelle’s Management, Grover Jackson/GP Capital America LLC.
Four Families has operated at Hobby Airport for the last two decades as a result of contracts awarded through the same rigorous and meticulous competitive procurement process. Earlier this week, Mayor Turner echoed the sentiments expressed by City Council members that Four Families and Pappas Restaurants have been a wonderful concession partner and community member. The competitive procurement process does not measure the quality of an individual, but rather the rate of return received by the City of Houston and the quality of service provided to passengers. The rate of return is not the same as projected sales. The proposed awardee offered a significantly higher rate of return and delivered the local concepts sought after by Houston Airports through this procurement process. The City of Houston is obligated by law to make its decision based on the results of the procurement process -- not a popularity contest. The process was followed, and procurement has presented to City Council the top-ranked competitor. We wholeheartedly object to Pappas’ questioning the integrity of the same procurement process that awarded them much success at our airport over the last two decades.
The integrity of the procurement process allows City Council to decide based on set standards rather than public opinion.
While we cannot speak to the specifics of the procurement process until City Council has voted, we can confirm the procurement process was competitive. We understand why, Hobby Airport is the first and only 5-Star airport in North America. As an innovator in the aviation industry, Hobby Airport is committed to redefining and elevating what the airport experience can be for all guests.
We are concerned with the blatant misrepresentation by Pappas Restaurants that suggests if City Council approves the contract that scored highest in the procurement process Hobby Airport would be without local restaurants.
That is incorrect.
The contract under review by City Council features iconic local concepts and supports small businesses that have deep ties to Houston. Killen’s Barbeque, The Spot, SpindleTap Brewery, Throughgood Coffee and Clutch City Coffee are among the proposed selection of distinct and fun local culinary options that will also celebrate the mouth-watering and signature flavors of Houston. The eclectic mix of award-winning and notable local favorites and trusted national brands will strengthen a sense of place within the airport.
Plain and simple, Hobby Airport will stay local if City Council approves the contract before them.
Earlier this year, Houston City Council awarded a 10-year food and beverage contract to LaTrelle’s Management, which currently works with Four Families to operate concessions inside Hobby Airport. LaTrelle’s will bring Common Bond Bakery, Velvet Taco, The Rustic, Dish Society, Pinks Pizza and Fat Cat Creamery to Hobby Airport by November 2024.
Unfortunately, the inaccuracies are spreading quickly because Four Families has hired a lobbyist to run a smear campaign that questions the integrity of the process. After 20 years of approved concession contracts by the City of Houston, we were hopeful Four Families would respect the competitive procurement process.