Innovative Spaces: Fort Worth’s Foundry District is Getting a Bite-Size Version of the Iconic Sweet Tooth Hotel

The Foundry District and its anchoring Inspiration Alley, known as Texas' largest outdoor art gallery, is getting an expansion. M2G Ventures' hallmark development project in Funkytown is a six-acre art and innovation experience.

The district's new lineup includes Sweet Tooth Motel's pop-up concept and a new bike sharing station.

Have a first look in our gallery.

Published May 19, 2021; Updated June 5, 2021
The Sweet Tooth Motel officially opened on Saturday, June 5. Find tickets for exclusive motel entry and the lobby installation here. The Foundry District also has a new date for its grand opening celebration: Friday, June 18. Anchored by “Inspiration Alley—named one of the top outdoor art experiences in the U.S. by Forbes—the six-acre art and innovation district is a collection of showrooms, curated shops, watering holes, and creative offices, including the Sweet Tooth Motel.

The Foundry District in Fort Worth is living up to its reputation as one of Forbes’ 15 best places to experience art in the United States: M2G Ventures, a real estate investment and development company, has unveiled a major lineup of immersive experiences and placemaking initiatives debuting all summer.

As M2G Ventures’ hallmark development project, The Foundry District is in the midst of a revitalization centered around providing DFW residents and out-of-town tourists with “extraordinary experiences that elevate the unexpected.” The intent is to show Cowtown—and the rest of the country—that the Foundry is a place where the city’s reputation can be shaped.

Nestled inside the area, which sits inside Fort Worth’s Cultural District, is a collection of 98,782 square feet of redeveloped mid-century warehouses. There’s also everything from dining and nightlife to creative offices and retail.

Forbes’ noted outdoor experience “Inspiration Alley”

Anchoring it all is Inspiration Alley, more than 4,600 square feet of vibrant, ever-changing outdoor murals that make for Texas’ largest outdoor art gallery. Known as a destination for art lovers, the more than 60 pieces lining the walls of The Foundry were each hand-selected and commissioned with a purpose.

That is set to be the canvas for various short-term integrations that aim to show visitors a first-of-its-kind metro experience.

As part of M2G’s plans to enhance the visitor experience in the district, Inspiration Alley itself is getting an expansion. The area will now house a walkthrough from Carroll Street to Vacek Street and more murals from local artists.

Fort Worth’s new Instagrammable hot spot: Sweet Tooth Motel

Inside Inspiration Alley will be the first of M2G’s selection of curated touchpoints, set to roll out through 2021: The Sweet Tooth Motel.

The Sweet Tooth Motel is part of M2G’s newest partnership with Sweet Tooth Hotel, which permanently sits in Dallas’ Victory Park. That 5,000-square-foot experiential art venue and bar plays host to some of North Texas’ most innovative creators with its rotating thematic exhibits.

The new Sweet Tooth Motel will be a taste of that.

The miniature pop-up concept has eight total art installations that will make the list of Dallas-Fort Worth’s most Instagrammable spots for many.

But hurry: The artful installation opens on June 5 for a limited engagement.

Jencey Keeton, co-founder and creative director of the Sweet Tooth Hotel, collaborated with developer M2G, led by Fort Worth sisters and twins Susan Gruppi and Jessica Miller Essl, for The Foundry Sweet Tooth experience.

There’s a secret hidden inside the Sweet Tooth Motel for guests to find. But you won’t find a spoiler here. [Photo: The Foundry]

“The Foundry has been a place where tastemaking brands are laying down roots while immersed in culture,” Miller Essl said in a news release.

The choice to “double down on the success and bring new art and events to The Foundry was a simple one to make,” she says.

The M2G team understands inspiration, beauty, and connection are possible through the convergence of art, innovative ideas, and curious conversation, Miller Essl explains.

“That will carry us into the next phase of our city’s expansion,” she said.

M2G’s artful evolution

According to the M2G sisters, art is a primary pillar of The Foundry’s foundation. Taking this step—by prioritizing the community’s experience and the unique offerings rather than just the buildings’ development—represents a “continued bold vision” for culture, placemaking, and the district’s expansion.

M2G Ventures co-presidents Susan Gruppi, left, and Jessica Miller Essl [Photos: M2G Ventures]

“The moment for growth and reestablishing connections is upon us,” Miller Essl said. “From the early stages of The Foundry, we realized that the district became a sort of beacon for innovative businesses and patrons seeking something new.”

The Foundry District is a place where innovators are pushing boundaries and leaving a mark on Fort Worth, the M2G founders say.

Fort Worth Bike Sharing Station debuts

Also new to The Foundry is a partnership with Fort Worth Bike Sharing. The collaboration means the area will now be home to a new cycle station, the company’s fleet of specialty bikes, and new ‘unicorn’ cycles, which integrate designs by M2G Ventures Chief Creative Officer Katie Murray.

Fort Worth Bike Sharing additionally plans to host curated events that start and end in The Foundry.

“Our hope is that this new expansion will excite and spark new energy among our neighbors and community while continuing to put Fort Worth on the map for innovation,” Miller Essl said. “This launch is just the beginning of what we have planned for 2021. We decided to set our plans into motion with a focus on art, but this phase is the first of many exciting placemaking initiatives that will include landmark signage, district-wide wayfinding, Fort Worth bike share partnership, anchor tenant expansions, with more details coming over the next few months.”

For more information

Find Sweet Tooth Motel tickets here. The Foundry District grand opening celebration will be held Friday, June 18, from 4 pm – 7 pm. at 2625 Whitmire Street in Fort Worth. MG2 Ventures has planned a day of festivities including “sweet, sweet culinary and beverage activations,” a launch of the Fort Worth bike-sharing station and the “unicorn cycle,” special Foundry tenant deals, and an interactive community art project. As always, check times and dates before you go. 

GALLERY

Here are scenes from the Foundry District and Inspiration Alley. Dallas Innovates joined M2G last week for a first look at Sweet Tooth Motel. 

Dallas Innovates’ Senior Editor Alex Edwards (center), Media Strategist Jon Perez (left), and Project Editor Maddie Preston (right) toured Sweet Tooth Hotel’s new mini pop up experience, the Sweet Tooth Motel.

The Sprinkle Spa is one of the immersive installations at the limited time exhibit.

The Sweet Tooth Motel has eight total art installations—making it most Instagrammable.

Guests can check in at 2600 Weisenberger to find five exhibits: Salon Sweet, Sprinkle Spa, Tug, Reign, and Garden of Light.

A Super Sweet ticket will get you to the Sunset Lounge (above) and the Stay Sweet Bakery, located in a twenty-foot shipping container with a mural by artist SM Sanz on the outside.

Artist SM Sanz [Courtesy: The Foundry District]

Head through a field of flamingos and the permanent art gallery at Inspiration Alley to find the Stay Sweet Bakery, along with the Sunset Lounge in the shipping container gallery.

The Foundry is expanding its outdoor mural gallery, called Inspiration Alley, with new works by local artists. [Courtesy: The Foundry District.]

Fort Worth Bike Sharing has a new cycle station in The Foundry District with bikes that are available for citywide use. [Courtesy: The Foundry District]

The Foundry district sports specially branded bikes—and will debut  "unicorn cycles" with design and art by M2G's chief creative officer Katie Murray.

The Foundry district sports specially branded bikes—and will debut “unicorn cycles” with design and art by M2G’s chief creative officer Katie Murray. [Courtesy: The Foundry District]

Quincy Preston contributed to this story. The story was updated on June 4, 2021 with additional information about the Foundry District and event times. A “first look” gallery was added on June 5. 

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