Friendly’s Moves Into Future By Embracing Past
SPRINGFIELD (WGGB) — Everything old is new again for the Wilbraham based Friendly’s Ice Cream Corporation. The ice cream company unveiled its new make-over this morning by taking a page from its past.
With a symbolic first scoop Friendly’s CEO John Maguire and Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno rededicated the Friendly’s restaurant on Boston Road.
It’s part of the companies multi-million dollar face-lift that Maguire hopes will recapture previous success by emphasizing a rich history. “It’s really the beginning of the start of bringing Friendly’s back to its rightful place as an iconic brand in the restaurant industry”
“It was all about high quality service, quality food, and a family experience. So this is really back to the future,” said Mayor Sarno, lifting up an ice cream cone from behind the counter.
The company calls it a refreshed dining experience – a new color scheme of white, red and black.
Nostalgic pictures line the walls and from the speakers, oldies but goodies. Another thing you’ll notice right upon entering the door is the smell – it’s sweet like vanilla and it’s from Friendly’s new signature item, the red velvet cone. They’re made to order like everything else in the kitchen. Including burgers that will not be frozen any more… and ice cream that will. No more soft serve in the Friendly Fribble.
“Our philosophy is fairly simple. We’re going to bring friendly’s back closer to its roots. Rooted in great ice cream and focused on great ice cream,” said Maguire.
And while that Friendly’s experience has wandered for many years, Maguire is hopeful the company is back on the right path. And that customers who fell in love with the iconic ice cream parlor years ago will be friendly once more.
They’ve opened it up. It’s brighter,” said longtime customer Bruce Olson. “It’s more comfortable in here, the food especially. The portions are bigger. It’s really been great.”
Right now, Friendly’s has revamped 5 of its local restaurants.
The company hopes to have all of it 361 locations re-launched within the next year and a half.