An IHOPplebee's Just Might Open In Your Area

Combination IHOP and Applebee's locations are doing well in international markets.

IHOP and Applebee's are both owned by the same parent company, Dine Brands Global. And though you probably don't sit around wishing you could order a short stack alongside your Dollarita, you just might be able to sooner rather than later, because Dine Brands Global has quietly been rolling out prototype locations with both restaurant chains under the same roof. And if their current run of success is any indication, you might find one in your own backyard sometime in the future.


Why Applebee’s and IHOP are combining locations

NBC News reports that information on the combo restaurant locations came out during a recent Dine Brands earnings call. There are already eight IHOP x Applebee's combo spaces installed in international markets, with the most recent opening in León, Mexico.


Dine Brands CEO John Peyton explained on the call that there's good reason to mash Applebee's and IHOP together.

"We can address all four day parts and that is a big innovation that we are nurturing overseas and that our intent is to eventually bring to the U.S. when we find the right opportunity to introduce it," he said. Between morning, lunch, dinner, and late night, having both an IHOP and Applebee's in the same spot ensures that virtually any meal, any craving can be covered throughout the day. It's a one-stop casual dining shop, so to speak.

And in terms of kitchen logistics, the newest location in Mexico has "a shared back of house and a combined and blended front of house for the two brands," according to Peyton. That means all the food comes out of the same kitchen, arriving at the same dining space; there's no designated area for IHOP or Applebee's diners.


The prototypes seem to be working out: Dine Brands noted that it's pulling in twice as much revenue from the combo spaces, which each fit two restaurants into the amount of space typically allotted to one.

Smushing multiple restaurants together isn't a new idea. FAT Brands (owner of Fatburger, Fazoli's, and more) is experimenting with running three restaurants under one roof, all with the same shared kitchen, but with pared-down menus to streamline operations. That combination restaurant space opened in late 2022, and is still operating now. And of course, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell tried this nearly 20 years ago.

Now I'm wondering what sorts of dishes I could mash up by ordering entrees at both IHOP and Applebee's. A riblet and waffle combo, perhaps? Nachos with scrambled eggs on top? A potential IHOPplebee's suddenly does sound a little interesting.