Crescent Communities and Nuveen Real Estate Announce Construction Start for New Food Hall, Monarch Market, at One Independence Center

Crescent Communities and Nuveen Real Estate Announce Construction Start for New Food Hall, Monarch Market, at One Independence Center
Feb 15 '23

Charlotte, N.C. – (February 15, 2023) Crescent Communities, a nationally recognized, market-leading real estate investor, developer, and operator of mixed-use and commercial communities, in partnership with Nuveen Real Estate, announces commencement of construction on Monarch Market, an 18,000-square-foot food hall at One Independence Center. The space, which will be operated by Hospitality HQ, will offer 12 to-be-announced food stalls, one full-service restaurant, three bars (including one fully outdoor concept along N. Tryon Street), and private event space. Hospitality HQ is currently accepting inquiries for prospective food and beverage tenants for the space, slated to open later this year. 

Monarch Market marks the culmination of a three-year, $33 million dollar reimagining of the building at the iconic corner of Trade and Tryon by Crescent Communities and Nuveen. The partnership has repositioned the asset to become the premier workplace in Uptown Charlotte, with a deliberate focus on creating a destination for employees to engage and for businesses to attract and retain customers and talent. The completed One Independence Center features 26,000 square feet of ground floor retail and a variety of move-in ready office opportunities for companies of various sizes.   

“Right in the heart of Charlotte’s busiest business neighborhood, Monarch Market is positioned to bring unmatched dining offerings and entertainment to both One Independence Center tenants and all Charlotte residents,” said Brendan Pierce, President of Commercial at Crescent Communities. “We’re excited to work alongside Hospitality HQ to provide those with offices in One Independence Center with a myriad of top-notch food and beverage options, perfect for both business lunches and post-work drinks. The atmosphere in Monarch Market will be unlike any other in Charlotte, and it is our hope that this space will provide those in the area – and in the building – with a destination that caters to every entertainment and dining need, from day to night.” 

Set to bring an unprecedented one-stop destination to Charlotte’s central business district, Monarch Market will provide One Independence Center tenants with high-quality and convenient lunch and dinner options without ever having to leave the building. The market will fill a void in the Uptown entertainment scene, offering pre- and post-event food and drink options to visitors of the nearby Blumenthal Theatre, Spectrum Centre, Truist Field, Discovery Place and Bank of America Stadium. 

“Charlotte’s growing educated workforce and attractive demographics is something we strongly believe in,” said Chad Phillips, Global Head of Office at Nuveen Real Estate. “The traditional workplace in the U.S. is evolving, and we see One Independence Center and Monarch Market as the embodiment of that future, offering dynamic environments and the state-of-the-art amenities that employees are looking for.” 

"We are proud to provide a future home to up-and-coming culinary talent, many of whom are local and launching their first brick and mortar locations or taking the chance at expanding their business with us as vendors at Monarch Market,” said Akhtar Nawab, Chef & Co-Chief Executive Officer and Founding Partner at Hospitality HQ. “We look forward to taking this journey with them, incubating local talent and becoming part of this incredible community.” 

Monarch Market will offer four distinct areas for corporate and group events, including an intimate cocktail lounge with outdoor space and vistas of Tryon Street; semi-private space which can be reserved; and an indoor/outdoor bar. Food delivery and access to the tenant lounge will also be available for those who work in One Independence Center.   

“This space will provide an opportunity for One Independence Center to be a true food destination in the heart of Uptown Charlotte, one that will not only be attractive for the daytime worker, but a unique destination for nights and weekends as well,” said Charles Thrift, Founding Partner of Thrift Commercial Real Estate.  

Collaborators for Monarch Food Hall include Hospitality HQ (operator), Eimer Design (architect and interiors), JE Dunn (general contractor), Cushman & Wakefield (consulting services), Nuveen Real Estate (equity), PNC Bank, U.S. Bank and First National Bank of Pennsylvania (financing).  

Renderings of the space can be viewed here; for more information on One Independence Center, visit To stay current on future Monarch Market announcements, visit

For office tenant leasing information, contact Charley Leavitt at and Barry Fabyan at For retail leasing information, contact Charles Thrift at If interested in becoming a vendor at Monarch, reach out to with information about your concept.

About Crescent Communities: 

Crescent Communities is a nationally recognized, market-leading real estate investor, developer and operator of mixed-use communities. We create high-quality, differentiated multifamily and commercial communities in many of the fastest growing markets in the United States. Since 1963, our development portfolio has included more than 77 multifamily communities, 24 million square feet of commercial space and 60 single family master-planned communities. Crescent Communities has offices in Charlotte, DC, Atlanta, Orlando, Nashville, Dallas, Denver, Phoenix and Salt Lake City. Our residential communities are branded NOVEL, RENDER and HARMON by Crescent Communities and our industrial developments are branded AXIAL by Crescent Communities. 

About Thrift CRES:  

Thrift CRES is a local boutique real estate firm that provides best in class office and retail leasing services focused on the Charlotte MSA. 

About Hospitality HQ: 

Hospitality HQ (HHQ) is a creative consulting and management group offering bespoke solutions for culinary-driven concepts across the United States. Helmed by award-winning chef, 
restaurateur, TV personality and cookbook author Akhtar Nawab, HHQ’s dynamic and 
comprehensive team prioritizes high quality service at all levels, producing systems for food and beverage concepts which consistently optimize guest experience. HHQ is currently the fastest-growing food hall management company in the country, with critically acclaimed restaurant and communal dining projects in more than 15 states. 

About Chef Akhtar Nawab:  

Akhtar Nawab is chef and owner of Alta Calidad in New York, Otra Vez in New Orleans, Bar Chinoise in Washington, DC and founding partner and CO-CEO of Hospitality HQ (HHQ). Nawab’s ‘less-is-more’ style of cooking has earned him critical praise throughout the years, beginning with his experience in the kitchen at acclaimed restaurants like Gramercy Tavern, Craftbar and Craft, the latter of which received three stars from The New York Times and won the James Beard Foundation’s “Best New Restaurant” Award during his tenure. Nawab received StarChef’s “Rising Star Chef” award while serving as executive chef of East Village gastropub The E.U., before striking out on his own as chef/partner in Elettaria in 2008. Shortly thereafter, he found himself gravitating towards Mexican cuisine and took the helm at popular NYC hotspot La Esquina. In 2017, Nawab opened his innovative Mexican restaurant Alta Calidad in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, which earned a Michelin Bib Gourmand rating in 2018 and 2019 and continues to thrive as a neighborhood mainstay. 

About Nuveen Real Estate:  

Nuveen Real Estate is one of the largest investment managers in the world with $152 billion of assets under management. Managing a suite of funds and mandates, across both public and private investments, and spanning both debt and equity across diverse geographies and investment styles, we provide access to every aspect of real estate investing. With over 85 years of real estate investing experience and more than 725 employees* located across 30 cities throughout the United States, Europe and Asia Pacific, the platform offers unparalleled geographic reach, which is married with deep sector expertise. For further information, please visit us at *Includes 345 real estate investment professionals, supported by a further 385 Nuveen employees. Source: Nuveen, 31 Dec 2021 

About PNC Bank: 

PNC Bank, National Association, is a member of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE: PNC). PNC is one of the largest diversified financial services institutions in the United States, organized around its customers and communities for strong relationships and local delivery of retail and business banking including a full range of lending products; specialized services for corporations and government entities, including corporate banking, real estate finance and asset-based lending; wealth management and asset management. For information about PNC, visit 

About U.S. Bank: 

U.S. Bank serves commercial real estate clients in more than 30 U.S. markets, with a focus on office, multifamily, industrial, lodging, single family housing and retail segments. The bank’s Commercial Real Estate team – a skilled group of relationship managers, underwriters, loan administrators and product specialists – provides a comprehensive set of financial solutions to public and private commercial real estate developers and investors. 

U.S. Bancorp, with approximately 77,000 employees and $675 billion in assets as of December 31, 2022, is the parent company of U.S. Bank National Association. The Minneapolis-based company serves millions of customers locally, nationally and globally through a diversified mix of businesses: Consumer and Business Banking; Payment Services; Corporate & Commercial Banking; and Wealth Management and Investment Services. MUFG Union Bank, consisting primarily of retail banking branches on the West Coast, joined U.S. Bancorp in 2022. The company has been recognized for its approach to digital innovation, social responsibility, and customer service, including being named one of the 2022 World’s Most Ethical Companies and Fortune’s most admired superregional bank. Learn more at 

About FNB: 

F.N.B. Corporation (FNB), with more than 4,000 employees and $43 billion in assets as of 10/2022, is the holding company for Pittsburgh based First National Bank of Pennsylvania. Established in 1864, FNB is known for a passion for doing what’s right and a commitment to its customers and the communities it serves.  FNB offers a broad array of products and services through a diversified mix of businesses:  Commercial Banking, Investment Real Estate Banking, Capital Markets, Insurance Services, Consumer Banking, and Wealth Management.  FNB has a growing consumer presence through its 340 branches and 1,100 ATMs spanning seven states and the District of Columbia, with market coverage in several major metropolitan areas including: Pittsburgh, PA; Baltimore, MD; Cleveland, OH; Washington, D.C.; Charlotte, Raleigh, Durham and the Piedmont Triad (Winston-Salem, Greensboro and High Point) in NC; and Charleston, SC. FNB has been recognized for its exceptional customer service and differentiated culture, its top mobile app for features and innovation, and is the winner of more than 80 Greenwich Excellence and Best Brand Awards, including 17 national and regional awards in the middle market and small business banking categories in 2021.