Golden Grounds Coffee serves Allendale campus


Courtesy / Golden Grounds Coffee Co.

Sara Collins, Staff Writer

The Grand Valley State University community has welcomed a new small business. Located just off campus in Campus View Apartments along 42nd Avenue, Golden Grounds Coffee opened during the fall semester and has quickly become a favorite among the GVSU community. 

Golden Grounds founders Hannah Kos and Kendall Gardner are best friends, former GVSU students and both 21 years old. They drove past an empty parking lot at Campus View apartments and saw the opportunity to start a unique and needed business for GVSU students.

“We started asking ourselves, and each other, why is there not a coffee shop here?” Gardner said. “College students love coffee.”

Gardner said she and Kos were growing frustrated with driving almost half an hour to Grand Rapids to work and meet with friends at coffee shops and wanted to establish an option for students closer to the Allendale campus. 

First, Gardner said she and Kos focused on clearing up the red tape, forming and writing up an LLC and finding an investor. While the coffee shop began with just a cart, they soon realized the coffee shop space needed to be kept at warmer temperatures and offer a comfortable place for clients to sit and enjoy their coffee. Gardner and Kos then built a shed-like structure around the mobile coffee cart to ensure they were able to heat the space and have a kitchen. 

“When we started forming the business, our main goal was to have a place where people just feel welcome,” Gardner said. “Whatever they are wanting to do for the day, whether it’s read or study or just hang out with a friend or be artistic, we really just wanted it to say ‘whatever you’re doing, come do it here.’”

The name “Golden Grounds” holds a special meaning for the two small business owners. 

“Hannah wrote me a poem for my birthday and the last line was ‘stay golden’,” Gardner said. “When I went to college, everywhere that I went I would take the poem with me.”

After brainstorming, the two came up and stuck with the name Golden Grounds. The poem is displayed on one of the shelves inside the coffee shop.

Gardner says her favorite part in owning the shop thus far is meeting all of the new customers, getting to know them, and building a community around coffee. GVSU student Lexi Morello said she appreciates the convenience and quick service at the new coffee shop near GVSU’s Allendale campus.

“It’s not as busy as Starbucks,” Morello said. “It’s on my way home from practice and I’ll get it on my way home.”

Gardner said Golden Grounds plans to open heated greenhouses in the near future to allow customers to enjoy their coffee during the upcoming colder temperatures. Along with this will come a more extensive menu, adding more items to their current soft opening menu.