Serenity Is Still a Zionsville Favorite More Than a Decade Later
Photographer: Glenda White
Serenity, a unique restaurant in Zionsville, operates out of the second oldest home in Zionsville, which was built in 1868. In 2008, the home was going to be torn down and turned into a parking lot. Karin Glass, who is passionate about historical renovation, saved the home and turned it into a restaurant. Ten years later, Serenity is still a favorite of many in the village.
One of the first things Glass decided to do when she took ownership of the home was to repaint it in its original, historic color. When decorating the space, she kept the late 1800s time period in mind. Entering the antique doors is like stepping back in time. Antiques, aged rugs, period lighting and family recipes are all prominent features of Serenity.
Opening a restaurant was never something Glass thought she’d do, but she says nothing in her life has been mapped out. After graduating from college, she moved to Hong Kong and was a designer for Marshall Fields. After meeting her husband, who is from Indianapolis, together they moved back to the area. She went on to work at Galyans and teach fashion merchandising at Butler University. Glass then started the largest women’s sports marketing company in the world and sold it to Time Warner. After this endeavor, she was looking for something else to do.
Glass’ grandfather had been the chairman of the board for McCall’s Magazine. She grew up going to women’s clubs and cooking from McCall’s menus. When the opportunity presented itself to combine her interests of historical renovation and cooking, she knew opening Serenity was the right thing to do.
“Serenity is very friendly and welcoming, it’s like being in someone’s home,” Glass says. About 80 percent of what we serve is grown in Indiana. There’s a community table, offering seating and conversations to anyone who wants to join in.”
The restaurant doesn’t just serve food. Serenity also offers unique events such as murder mystery dinners and English teas and etiquette classes. The space can be used to host events like wedding showers, birthday celebrations and business meetings, too. It can accommodate up to 60 people.
“If you want a unique situation and fabulous food, you will love Serenity,” Glass adds. “I haven’t been able to change my menu in 10 years because it’s made up of favorites of everyone and as soon as I take something off, I get in trouble.”
Glass tries to keep the food healthy and does not use salt when she cooks. Because her grandfather was the governor of the state of Washington, she uses a lot of recipes that were served in the Governor’s mansion. There’s always a special offered at Serenity, a favorite is the chicken salad served on an apple fritter — inspired by her time with her grandfather in the Pacific Northwest.
Glass appreciates that Zionsville is family friendly and that there are many historic buildings. She likes that there are many restaurants in the neighborhood that all have their own niche but that the business owners work together as a team when they need to.
“What I enjoy most is the diversity of what we do, from events and classes to meals,” she says. “I really like that we make a difference in people’s lives. People sometimes come in crying but then leave happy.”
Serenity is located at 135 South Main Street in Zionsville. You can learn more about Serenity by giving them a call at 317-873-5590 or visiting them online at occasionsdivine.com.