Eat, Drink and Support the Arts!

NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth (NBCDFW.com)  – July 23, 2016

Supporting the arts has never been so delicious. Craig Hall, the developer of Hall Arts in the Dallas Arts District, has donated two restaurant spaces to the Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT).

One of the restaurant spaces is the new home of Stephan Pyles Flora Street Café. The lease of the restaurant spaces will be donated to CFT and those funds will directly support arts organizations.

Hall previously worked with CFT for his charitable giving and in the fall of 2013, he approached CFT with his idea of donating two restaurant spaces in his new Arts District building. With more than 60 years of experience in partnering with donors and non-profit organizations, CFT is an ideal partner to handle this complex opportunity. Hall established an additional donor-advised fund at CFT, which will own the restaurant spaces. The lease and/or eventual sale proceeds will be turned into grants to benefit the nonprofits in the Arts District.

“I believe businesses should always give back to their communities and strive to do good,” said Craig Hall, founder and chairman of HALL Group. “This is an exciting philanthropic model, and as more and more people come to Stephan Pyles Flora Street Café and other future HALL Arts restaurants, we hope the local arts organizations will benefit greatly and the Arts District will continue to grow.”

Hall and his wife, Kathryn, own Hall Wines in Napa Valley, California. TABC rules prohibit the ownership of a winery and a restaurant that sells wine. Rather than find a business partner to take over ownership of the restaurant spaces, Hall decided find to a way to support arts organizations based in and around the immediate area surrounding those restaurant spaces for years to come.

The donation of 11,500 square feet is a creative endeavor Dallas chef Stephan Pyles proudly endorses. “Craig Hall has always been a dynamic leader in creative partnering. This model of having the Arts District venues benefit from dining at my restaurant in Hall Arts is perhaps his most creative to date,” said Pyles. “I am proud to be part of this win-win for all parties involved.”

Hall seems to be a trendsetter in supporting the arts community through such a business/foundation partnership and Susan Swan Smith, chief relationship officer of CFT, hopes it will inspire others. “We expect this will be an example for other families and businesses to give back and look forward to helping facilitate the next great idea that benefits North Texas,” she said.

And that’s an idea deserving a raised glass.