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HMSHost Opens 2nd Southern Grounds at JAX

HMSHost opened its second Southern Grounds café at Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) to provide travelers pre-security a chance to experience a modern, chef-driven coffee house.

Both JAX Southern Grounds locations also feature a lunch and dinner menus, a full bar featuring craft cocktails, and sweet treats from Jacksonville-based Blueberry Artisan Bakery.

“Airports have an opportunity to highlight the local food and beverage experiences that best represent their communities,” Jacksonville Aviation Authority (JAA) CEO Mark VanLoh said. “As a beloved coffee house with several locations throughout Jacksonville, Southern Grounds is a perfect fit for our terminal.”

The expanded all-day menu boasts everything from benedicts and burgers to salads, sandwiches, pitas, and tacos. The menu also focuses on sustainable, locally sourced ingredients to suit multiple dietary preferences, including health-forward, gluten-free, and vegetarian.

HMSHost operates both Southern Grounds restaurants at JAX with Florida-based Lee Wesley, an Airport Concessions Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE) joint venture partner. The first Southern Grounds opened at JAX in Concourse A last year as part of a 10-year contract awarded to HMSHost and Lee Wesley.

“Since the first Southern Grounds opened in early 2022, it has proven to be an incredibly popular, sought-after dining destination at Jacksonville International Airport for its great coffee and food,” said Stephen Douglas, HMSHost vice president of business development. “We are thrilled to partner with the Jacksonville Aviation Authority and Lee Wesley to open a larger, second restaurant so we can bring the unique Southern Grounds experience to all visitors to JAX.”