An Interview with maman Owner & Co-founder
Elisa Marshall

Known for their French-influenced cuisine and signature rustic décor, maman is more than a bakery and café. It's a home away from home—a welcoming place to connect with family, friends or coworkers for brunch, lunch or an afternoon pastry.

We have Elisa Marshall, owner and co-founder of maman, to thank for creating these charming spaces for us to gather, savor the daily quiche, and enjoy of Oprah's favorite cookies. We sat down with Elisa to learn more about her vision, what drives her, and how she sources so many beautiful products

inKind: Elisa, can you introduce yourself to our inKind users?

Elisa: My name is Elisa Marshall, I am the co-founder & owner of maman, a mother of 2, a freelance consultant for branding, marketing and interior design.

inKind: Tell us about your desire to open the first maman.

Elisa: Before I opened maman, I was living that multi-hyphen life, working a day job in PR & Marketing, wedding planning on weekends, being a caterer of sweet treats AND interior decorating. I wanted to find a job where all of those jobs molded into 1 amazing job. What better way to do that than to invent the career I was dreaming of myself? Building maman would allow me to flex my PR and marketing muscles, plan events, bring sweet treats to the masses and design beautiful spaces.

inKind: How did you get started in PR & Marketing?

Elisa: I studied fashion initially and fell in love with the marketing and branding side of the business. That led me to PR and communications, which naturally lends itself to going to tons of events. I started doing brand launches, store openings, and press previews. I really enjoyed it so I started planning personal events too, like weddings! We all know planning a wedding can feel like its own full-time job.

inKind: When did you find time to cater sweet treats between your career in marketing and planning weddings?

Elisa: I loved backing as a kid. I always helped my Mom in the kitchen. With wedding planning, I met a planner who wanted to source someone to do a sweets table. I realized I could be that person, so I started catering sweets too!
inKind: How did your busy schedule make room for dreaming up maman?

Elisa: On my first date with my now husband and business partner Ben, we shared a common dream. He mentioned that he wanted to get into the food industry and I mentioned that I wanted to open a bakery/event venue. Many dates and about a year later, we decided to quit our jobs and life in North America and take a plunge to follow our passions so we partnered with some friends of ours to open a restaurant in Ibiza, Spain! It became this perfect stepping stone because the event venue was a top wedding destination - so now I could take my event experience, wedding experience, and catering experience into this opportunity.

inKind: When did maman become more of a reality?

Elisa: The concept of maman was always a dream of mine and after becoming friends with a landlord, and becoming familiar with his building, I saw a location that just had the perfect foundation for my vision. In addition, right across the street was this beautiful building that reminded me of the streets of France as well.. I quickly learned that the space would soon be available and I was able to make my dream a reality.

inKind: All maman locations are truly beautiful! Tell us about your design process for the first maman.

Elisa: To me, the goal of maman is to create an environment that reflects a home away from home experience for our guests. Maman aims to bring warmth and charm to all of our spaces. Our first cafe was a huge effort! We handpicked every single chair, mixed and matched all of our service wear from so many different sources, from my Grandmother's own collection to antique shops around the world. We now have over 20 locations and have run out of my Grandma's china, but we still make sure that at least 70% of our furniture is repurposed vintage.