Set against a beautiful backdrop, and as much worth visiting for its incredible tropical setting as for its food, best baristas and mixologists, West Palm Beach is the place to experience a wide variety of gourmet cuisine. And while we can focus on the new arrivals or the most frequented day and night spots, we cannot forget one of the oldest attractions Palm Beach County has to offer.
Palm Beach Kennel Club.
The facility is loaded with the feel of old Florida, with plenty of options for drinks and food. The club has decades of highlights as a sporting, dining and live entertainment venue. Since 1932, when it introduced greyhound racing and pari-mutuel wagering to Palm Beach County, the Palm Beach Kennel Club still is one of the most visited settings and competitive tracks in the country. It has featured some of the best greyhounds ever in the history of the sport—from the three-time All American Westy Whizzer in the 1960s to Ozzie the Man, who in 2006 won 26 times in a row, earning the titles: North American Win Champ, All American Captain, and Rural Rube.
But dining at Palm Beach Kennel Club makes the difference in energy and mood! As much of a sports, gaming and entertainment place as it is, you can watch, wager, and possibly win right from your own table at the club’s Paddock Restaurant. You’ll also be pleasantly surprised by its innovative French cuisine served under the direction of Chef Wanyou Laurents.
The restaurant has an expansive dining room that seats 325 guests, and offers tables with tabletop TVs and clear views of the racetrack. The place has been known to host business meetings, reunions, club functions, conferences and seminars, as well as family celebrations, from weddings to birthday parties. Racing enthusiasts will have a thrill at the Paddock, an elegant dining room with a commanding view of the Kennel Club’s beautifully landscaped track.
Chef Wanyou Laurents has been employed at the club for over 20 years. His menu is regularly praised for its effortlessly impressive presentations. All your favorites are here, including delicious prime steaks, fresh seafood, and innovative pasta-based dishes.
As the excitement of racing will draw you even closer to the tracks, The Terrace is another restaurant within the Palm Beach Kennel Club to savor cold and hot plates with the ever famous Rooney’s Ales and Lagers. Thick-bodied, they pack quite a punch!
The Terrace Restaurant is located on the club’s second floor, and offers sit-down and full table service. Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served daily, from delicious egg sandwiches to soups, salads, deli sandwiches, burgers and wraps.
Stepping inside the Palm Beach Kennel Club is like traveling back in time to the roaring 1920s, when Florida was the focus of the greatest economic and social movement in American history. People came in droves to play in the Sunshine State—America’s first resort destination. Magnates like Henry Flagler not only dominated the Gilded Era, designing railroads, developments and entire cities, but also created a new way of life widely known as “the Florida lifestyle,” which took advantage of the state’s warm climate and much desired outdoor leaving.
As Florida has always attracted entrepreneurs to our shores—its landscape, climate, history, along with its mix of eclectic energy and relaxation, it also attracted the O.M. Carmichael Family to come and build the original Kennel Club facility in West Palm Beach. Later on, after being passed though different owners, Arthur J. Rooney, Sr. and his five sons: Dan, Art Jr., Tim, Pat and John, have made this property an illustrious, iconic landmark of the Palm Beaches. By the way, the Rooneys also own the Pittsburgh Steelers, six-time NFL champions and Yonkers Raceway Empire Casino in New York.
There are plenty of reasons that make dining at Palm Beach Kennel Club something so remarkable: the selection of only the best quality foods and freshest ingredients to serve customers at the Paddock, the casual settings for lighter, faster fare that The Terrace offers, and the substantial convenience various concession stands and fully-stocked bars provide along the club.
If you visit, Palm Beach Kennel Club is located at 1111 North Congress Avenue, West Palm Beach. Also, check pbkennelclub.com for the latest information about events happening this month.