Playground Hospitality was founded by visionary restaurateur, concept development expert & real estate strategist, Doug Roth


Our Founder & President



Founder + President, Playground Hospitality
Founder + Operator, SeeSaw

Connect with Doug via LinkedIn
Download Doug's Resume

Doug has restaurant expertise embedded in his DNA.

Doug is the son of Don Roth and grandson of Otto Roth -- operators of the famous Blackhawk restaurant. Having grown up in the family business, Doug has top to bottom, hands-on experience performing every role from washing dishes to operating a full service restaurant.

With an eye for thoughtful details and a nod to Midwestern heritage, he is on a mission to bring responsibly grown food to more people with a new farm-to-counter fresh casual restaurant concept: SeeSaw.

Doug has owned and operated many restaurants throughout his career, including Bistro 110, Bistro 100, Blackhawk Lodge, Don Roth Restaurants and the award-winning Red Moon. As an equity partner and VP of development with Levy Restaurants, Doug created multiple nationally recognized restaurant concepts. As the hands-on operator at Bistro 110, he directed more than 150 employees and it became one of the highest grossing restaurants in Chicago for 22 years. 

In addition to his love for the hospitality industry, Doug is a sports enthusiast that enjoys swimming and biking. Doug is a dedicated board member of Honor Flight Chicago and he lives in the North Shore with his wife Jennifer and their three children.



Our Partners & Resources

Dan Smith


Dan Smith, one half of The Hearty Boys, has been one of the trend setting caterers in Chicago for the last 15 years, feeding the likes of President Obama and Oprah Winfrey as well as producing events for 10 to 10,000. He and partner Steve McDonagh were the original Next Food Network Star winners and subsequently had their own series, “Party Line with The Hearty Boys”. Chicago restaurants include HB, Hearty and most recently SpritzBurger with Gale Gand. Cookbooks include “Talk with Your Mouth Full” and “The New Old Bar.”


Gale Gand


Gale Gand is pastry chef/partner of the newly opened SpritzBurger in Chicago, a collaboration with The Hearty Boys. She is partner of the Michelin one star, Tru, with Lettuce Entertain You Restaurants. Gale was the host of Food Network “Sweet Dreamsand has authored 8 books. She produces Gale’s Root Beer, has received two James Beard Awards, has been inducted to the Chicago Chefs Hall of Fame and is the mother of 3.


Richard Kincaid


Richard Kincaid was the president and chief executive officer of Equity Office Properties Trust, until its acquisition by the Blackstone Group in February of 2007. He is currently the President and Founder of the BeCause Foundation. Mr. Kincaid is also an active private investor in early stage companies. He is currently an investor/advisor/director for 10 early stage companies in healthcare, social media, biotechnology, media and parking. 


The Gettys Group


The Gettys Group is an award-winning global hospitality design firm specializing in interior design, consulting, branding & procurement. They operate at the intersection of strategy, design and implementation, and are extraordinary in our capacity to execute brilliantly in Interior Design, Consulting, Branding and Procurement. This organizational strategy has produced a fluid interchange of expertise, which enables The Gettys Group to drive innovative, and authentic solutions to every project.


Avenir Creative


Founded by Julie Purpura and Allison Delaney, Avenir Creative is a concept-driven design firm that believes successful design begins with a story. Avenir provides this through the use of strong narratives and supporting imagery based on client needs and project research. They strive to exceed clients' expectation by providing great design with an end result that not only tells a story, it shapes an experience.