Namaste Cat Café eyes 2023 opening in Hamilton County


For years, Jenni Beesley has volunteered her time through the Paws on my Heart nonprofit to help adoptable cats and kittens find a home, but she wanted to do more.

So, the Carmel resident is working to open one of Hamilton County’s first cat cafes, which would provide space for customers to enjoy freshly prepared food and beverages in an attached lounge filled with free-roaming felines looking for a home (Smitten Kitten Cat Cafe is set to open later this year in Fishers).

Beesley is eyeing potential sites for Namaste Cat Café in Carmel and Westfield and is hopeful for a fall 2023 opening. The space is set to consist of a for-profit cafe and a connected – but separated – nonprofit lounge area where guests can take their refreshments and interact with cats.

“I look forward to the possibilities of a cafe where people can come in and enjoy themselves and chill, have a bite to eat and a beverage and hang out with the cats,” Beesley said. “It’s a fantastic entertainment destination option for Hamilton County, and if we do it right, it can be a nice, big, beautiful spot.”

To help make the idea a reality, Namaste Cat Cafe is holding an online auction Nov. 4 to 6 to raise funds to build out the project. The Meow at the Moon auction includes gift cards to local restaurants, cat-themed artwork, jewelry and more. Preview and participate in the auction at

Beesley, whose family shares their home with cats, dogs and guinea pigs, was inspired to open a cat cafe in Hamilton County after visiting a similar concept in Kansas City. She said there are more than 100 cat cafes in the U.S. and that many were launched by “people who know cats” but don’t necessarily have business or restaurant expertise.

So, Beesley is partnering with Ivan Frink, a Carmel resident and manager of Homemade Ice Cream & Bakery Café on Michigan Road, to launch the cafe. Together, they are working to ensure the cafe’s food and drink offerings are top-quality, making it a destination even for customers who may not have an interest in cats.

A percentage of profits from Namaste Cat Café and donations made to its affiliated nonprofit are set to go toward initiatives that aim to increase adoption rates and organizations that provide low-cost or free veterinary care.

Beesley, daughter of an entrepreneurial veterinarian, wants to eventually open several cat cafes and is open to the possibility of opening a dog cafe in the future. Cat-friendly adoptable dogs may be present in the cat cafes, one at a time.

Learn more at