Pop Parlour plans UCF location details, opening updates
With Orlando reaching 100 degrees and UCF summer classes in session, students may soon be craving refreshing treats on campus to help cool them down.
With an existing downtown site and a new Winter Garden location, which opened nearly a month ago, Pop Parlour is continuing its plan for an on-campus shop, with construction aimed for next week.
"We are just waiting for the state to give us the OK to move forward with construction. We are looking at six weeks of construction and plan to open in August before the fall semester kicks off," said Brandon Chandler, Parlour owner and UCF alumnus.
The gourmet Popsicles are all natural, hand crafted and some also feature alcohol.
Sophomore radio/TV production pending major Brooke McLaughlin said she visited the downtown location and appreciated not only the various treats, but also the warm hospitality from Chandler.
"[Chandler] was just overall really nice. He seems like an awesome guy. ... He also has lots of different Popsicle recipes and flavors, so I'm excited to try more of them. I only went once, but I'll be sure to visit more when it's on campus," McLaughlin said.
With popular choices at around $2 each, such as the peanut butter and banana or pistachio and coconut, Pop Parlour offers a variety of unique flavors, including champagne mango peach, watermelon mint, Nutella, birthday cake, Bloody Mary and mimosa.
"I first went to the one downtown about a year ago and it seemed as if it was a hidden gem of Orlando. I find that many friends have never heard of this place and I think it deserves more publicity. ... Moving to UCF campus is such a great way to do that," said sophomore hospitality major Kaley Light.
Along with the variety of frozen treats, the UCF Parlour is starting off with orders of coffee equipment, along with beer and wine orders, which are scheduled to be added to the new location.
Another unique element to be incorporated is customer trust, which Chandler said is important to the business.
The location plans to include a kitchen that is open for customers to watch the treat-making process.
"Sadly, there isn't a lot of honesty in this industry about what you use in your pops and how you freeze them. … We want to share with our customers that they can trust us when we say what is in our pops and how they are made," Chandler said.
Instead of just watching what is being made in the kitchen, customers may eventually participate in classes, where they can make their own treats.
Opening in a fairly larger space near Knightro's by the CFE Arena, the soon-to-open location also costs fairly more than the petite downtown space.
Compared to the Central Boulevard location, the UCF Parlour is about two and a half times more expensive to open, with the space being nearly four times as large.
"I wanted to make sure it was a space people wanted to spend time in, so our finishes and overall design is much more expensive to create the atmosphere we want," Chandler said.
With more space comes more job openings.
For students trying to find summer jobs, Chandler said he will look to hire next month, with a plan to add 10 to 15 new staff members.
"We have a very serious emphasis on customer service, so we will be doing some extensive training in the month or so leading up to our opening in August," Chandler said.
Students can also be on the lookout for giveaways and specials leading up to the opening on Pop Parlour's Facebook page.
Check back for coverage on the soon-to-be UCF opening.
Marina Guerges is the Editor-in-Chief at the Central Florida Future. Follow her on Twitter at @marinaguerges or email her at MarinaG@CentralFloridaFuture.com.