THE BRIGHT SIDE
Stephanie Copsey, the Lake Geneva tourism coordinator, presented the Riviera Ballroom proposed event changes. Stephanie is not new to Lake Geneva but the position she holds is. She is the only employee of the city tourism commission. Currently, the task of promoting, showing, pricing, and billing events at that the Riviera ballroom will fall solely on Stephanie. In the past, the Harbor Master filled this role, but that was not always considered a priority and the Riviera was often not utilized to its fullest. Stephanie was hired part-time but has been working close to full-time hours getting paperwork organized and scheduling Riviera Ballroom events.
Stephanie believes that the Riviera is a very loved venue and it could be extremely sought after and should be treated as just that. She proposed some changes at last week’s Piers, Harbor, and Lakefront meeting. She proposed raising the fee for the ballroom rental. She recognizes that this has not been done in quite a while and needs to be done in small increments working up to comparable venue rates. Residents currently are charged $2,500 for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday rentals. The proposed increase would be Saturday $3,000, Friday, and Sunday $2,500 (non-holidays). Right now the real deal is that residents can rent the Riviera Monday through Thursday for only $500 a day. The increase would change this to $950. The current non-resident fees are $3,000 for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, which would increase to $3,990 on Saturdays and $3,400 on Friday and Sundays. Monday through Thursday is currently $500 and would increase to $1,250.
In order to fill the Riviera during the non-peak season, Stephanie is suggesting that a 20% off incentive be considered. Also, the Riviera has a preferred caterer list and if used the city receives a commission. This has not always been done and Stephanie believes that the relationship with the caterers is important and the 15% commission currently charged to the caterers should be dropped to $10%. This fee has not always been actively collected, but monthly invoices will be enforced from here on out. The need for enforcement is important due to the lack of bill collecting in the past and the loss this created for the city’s bottom line. Copsey believes these changes and a few more tweaks could make the Riviera a true financial asset to the city.
The proposal will be presented to the Finance, License, and Regulation meeting Tuesday, July 2nd. Stephanie sees a bright active future for the Riviera and is excited to see how the renovations will increase the ‘must have’ feeling brides already have for the Riviera Ballroom. Stephanie is not new to the wedding world as she is the owner of Stephanie Lynn Lake Geneva LLC. a wedding planning service that coordinates weddings at many local spots and resorts. Some may feel this is an ideal situation and some may feel it is a conflict of interest. One thing is obvious Stephanie has brought enthusiasm and a boost in renters, and those are both good things.