Plant-Based in a Cheesesteak City
“Brave! Nicole Marquis is so brave. Visionary, too”, that’s how the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Karen Heller described the creator of HipCityVeg, the trend-setting plant-based fast casual restaurant chain. Born and raised in the Philadelphia area, a graduate of Temple University, followed by studies at the California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles, Ms. Marquis is part of the wave of health conscious educated professionals that exemplify the Philadelphia restaurant renaissance.
In April 2012, after years of comprehensive preparations, Marquis opened HipCityVeg in Philadelphia’s Rittenhouse Square to rave reviews. A Best of Philadelphia award-winning destination since its first months of operation, HipCityVeg offers a cuisine of fresh, bold flavors in a novel, yet familiar form. Its fast food-inspired, 100% plant-based menu of burgers and fries, salads and wraps, healthy drinks and desserts points to a new way of eating and healthy living. The mission of HipCityVeg is to make delicious plant-based food convenient and available to people ever where.
A second Philadelphia HipCityVeg opened on the University of Pennsylvania campus in 2013 and the newest Philadelphia location opened in the North American Building on Broad Street in December 2016. The brand’s national expansion began with the opening of the first Washington, D.C. HipCityVeg in June 2016. Ms. Marquis plans to grow the HipCityVeg brand with openings along the East Coast and beyond. Ms. Marquis also created two full service plant-based restaurants, the sexy cocktail lounge and tapas restaurant Charlie was a sinner. and Bar Bombón, a Latin-inspired restaurant reminiscent of Old San Juan.
Ms. Marquis has been the subject of numerous print and television segments. She is a sought-after speaker, addressing audiences on the topics of entrepreneurialism, sustainability, food ethics and compassion for living things.