Houston “Family-Friendly” Restaurant, La Fisheria, Not So Friendly After All

Image via La Fisheria
Image via La Fisheria

 

A “family-friendly” restaurant in Houston, Texas, La Fisheria, is one of a long list of recent restaurants to implement a “no kid” policy or “no kids after a certain time of the day” policy. La Fisheria has implemented a strict no kids under the age of 9 after 7 pm in the evening. Seems like “family-friendly” doesn’t mean what it used to. Apparently, the “kids” part of the family is annoying to other patrons of the restaurant.

Adult-only restaurants are nothing new; there are several upscale restaurants in our town that do not offer a child’s menu. I am thankful for these restaurants because on those rare occasions when my husband and I can sneak away for a “date night” I appreciate the adult-only ambiance.

Let’s be honest, it’s no fun listening to our own children fuss and whine and ask a million questions, I certainly don’t want to listen to someone else’s.

 Let’s be honest, it’s no fun listening to our own children fuss and whine and ask a million questions, I certainly don’t want to listen to someone else’s. I get it. Yet, I think when you are known for being a “family friendly” establishment and suddenly you are not so friendly towards children under 9, your patrons with children might feel duped.

MORE: The Kids Menu is Horrible for Your Kids }

Imagine, it’s been your family tradition to go out to La Fisheria on Friday nights for family night and now, you show up and they tell you that your 6-year-old twins aren’t welcome. Never mind, that you have been bringing them since they were born. I can see why feelings might get hurt, people would be offended and upset. Our children are not our accessories we can’t just take one off and leave it at home.

Here is what I think. My kids are usually getting ready for bed at 7 pm so I don’t care if La Fisheria implements their policy. Secondly, even if they are awake, we don’t take them out to dinner at that time of night for several reasons 1) they would be starving and acting like crazy people 2) they would be tired and acting like crazy people. I visited the restaurants site and I must say the restaurant looks adult contemporary so I probably wouldn't bring my kid to that restaurant after 7 pm.  However, if up to this point they have encouraged families to visit, it's hard to put on the brakes and not feel some backlash.

I understand the owner's motivation to provide a more adult ambiance in the evening hours for people who are on dinner dates however, they were previously known as being a “family-friendly” restaurant and that is what people are expecting.

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Just like the owner of Rainy Days Caffe, Rainy McDuff, learned the hard way that ridiculing your patrons who have children is not acceptable and is bad for business, so will La Fisheria. You can’t market yourself as “family-friendly” and then not be. It is that simple.  Market yourself as something else. You can’t have it both ways.

What would you do if a policy like this was enacted at one of your favorite family-friendly dining spots? Would you stop going there or adjust to their new way of doing things?

What do you think?

Houston “Family-Friendly” Restaurant, La Fisheria, Not So Friendly After All

Deborah Cruz, @TruthfulMommy, is the creator of The TRUTH about Motherhood, an often humorous and brutally honest look at motherhood. She's a writer, a wife, and a work-at-home Mommy who's trying to do it all well. She live in the Midwest with her 2 little girls and her husband. She has a lot of degrees from a bunch of schools but mostly spends her days shuttling people under the age of 7, while trying to maintain her sanity and she wouldn't have it any other way. She talks a lot. She ... More

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