Doug Warner, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development, explains why Kings is about more than just bowling
Lexington, Mass. native Doug Warner began working as a bartender at Kings’ first location in Boston 10 years ago. Rising through the ranks quickly to his current position as vice president of marketing and business development, Warner is passionate about the company’s successful (the 10th Kings opens in Miami this March) merging of two great concepts: fine dining and great bowling. Yes, bowling!
“We have a really big culinary focus,” says Warner. “Everything in the house is made from scratch and the menu is updated several times a year by our executive chef. And then we have fantastic bowling with state-of-the-art equipment, plus some great social gaming like billiards and shuffleboard.” Kings attracts its crowd of regulars, some of whom enjoy bowling there weekly or grabbing drinks and dinner at the retro-style bar and lounges. Thanks to its location near Hynes Convention Center in the Back Bay, the Boston venue also sees many out-of-state visitors looking for a place to unwind and connect with new friends in the Hub. Because Kings focuses on low-tech gaming, it encourages socializing. “All day, you sit in front of a computer screen at work, or you’re checking emails every five seconds on your phone,” says Warner. “We like to pull people away from that and actually let them enjoy each other’s company.” Warner is especially proud that “a lot of people from Boston bring guests from out of town to us, to give them an interesting flavor of the city.”
Indeed, Warner says that Kings is really “in the business of making memories,” which often includes birthday and bachelor parties, as well as fundraising events for local charities. Warner’s personal favorite moments are tied to the company’s commitment to high standards, from the red carpet fanfare that accompanies each location’s grand opening, to the bustling teamwork of manning the bar on a busy night. “Our guest service is something that sets us apart.…We’re always running around, making sure our guests are having a great time.” As for the bowling itself, what’s Warner’s tip for winning big at Kings? “Just have fun with it,” he says. “It’s all about celebrating those moments in life where you want something a little bit special.”