For the first time in three years, there has been an upgrade to the dining hall at Chaminade University.
In June, Chaminade began renovations inside the Silversword Cafe. The project is funded by Chaminade University and Aramark Dining, the dining room food service providers. Aramark Dining contributed a total of $1.2 million for the renovations. The renovations are expected to last until the end of November, due to a backlog of state permits.
To keep the Silversword Cafe operational, a temporary serving station has been installed in the back and a temporary wall has been built to block ongoing construction in the kitchen.
The Silversword Cafe should have new furniture such as tables, chairs, and bench-style seating. He hopes to create a new meeting place for students with a small section in the corner of the dining hall. New furniture has also been delayed due to shipping delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Students are now welcomed by new light fixtures and tiles on the walls and floor. There was also an idea to include graphics on the blank walls.
“I’m in love with the designs,” said Allison Jerome, vice president of student affairs and dean of students at Chaminade University. “I’m excited to see the final product and I’m grateful it’s happening.”
Jerome worked closely with Ushijima Architects Inc. to create the new look for Silversword Cafe. The design offers a modern, minimalist look for students that was primarily inspired by students through focus groups conducted by Chaminade University.
“I think it’s cool but the design doesn’t fit the rest of the school,” said Katherine Gonzalez, a fourth-year criminal justice major. “His [the Silversword Cafe] very minimalistic and futuristic unlike the rest of the school.”
In addition to interior design, the Silversword Cafe now offers a la carte options like coffee for students or teachers who just want to take a break. Students now have the ability to control the music playing in the dining hall with a modern jukebox app.
The cafeteria was recently renovated in 2019 after a flood, which required repairs to the walls and floors.
Chaminade University had been waiting for the opportunity to do additional renovations to the Silversword Cafe since that flood, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was pushed back.
The students hope to see the finished product soon and feel it was a much needed renovation. A concern for students is that the horizontal beam near the entrance is too low for tall students. The students find it amusing to watch the tall students duck their heads to avoid hitting the beam.
“I think the renovations are cool, but they should do something for the beam,” said third-year biology major Jannabel Bielza.
Jerome mentioned that the beam could not be raised due to structural issues, but the door to the new service stations was raised another foot to accommodate taller students.
“The renovations are a great start for the dining room,” said Jade Holokai, a fourth-year forensic science major.