Monday, October 19, 2009

5 Reasons to Add a VIP Room to Your Nightclub or Bar

5 Reasons to Add a VIP Room to Your Nightclub or Bar
by Yana Zhuravel Spokeswoman

Have you been looking for a new way to increase revenue at your bar or nightclub?

A relatively low-cost and easy to implement idea sure to catch your customer's attention is a VIP room/area. Creating a VIP room takes some thought and some planning and to help you decide whether this venture is for you, we've put together a list of 5 reasons to add a VIP area to your establishment along with some helpful tips on how to make your new VIP are a success. Keep reading to see if opening a VIP room makes sense for your bar/nightclub.

1. Exclusivity - Everyone wants to feel like they're part of an exclusive club where only the select few gain entry, and once members, people will pay-up for the privilege. Offering a VIP room or area in your bar or nightclub will give your deeper-pocketed guests their own private club for the night. Call it "the mystique of the velvet rope," but where there are deep pocketed guests there are beautiful women, and where there are beautiful women, there are more deep pocketed guests, and so the circle goes.

2. Privacy for Private Parties - People love to celebrate birthdays, special holidays, league championships, you name it…these people are here to celebrate a common cause and don't want to be scattered all over the place, they want their own space. A VIP area will allow you to accommodate these parties and charge these guests for the service, which brings me to #3 and #4…

3. Offer Bottle Service - Bar Business Magazine recently wrote a story about the benefits of bottle service. The article profiled Michael Ault, a bottle service pioneer who opened over 25 nightclubs world-wide. Mr. Ault is quoted as saying that " what [one of his clubs] achieves with three nights a week, other bars need seven nights of operation to achieve. That is the benefit of bottle service." A word to the wise, Mr. Ault advises that bottle service is not optimal for every establishment and that in order to have a successful bottle service area a "you have to offer something really special." This is where having top-notch furniture really makes a difference as evidenced by the same article "…bottle clubs work [because] they are the most beautiful clubs, the have the coolest vibes and coolest people…The physical arrangement of furniture plays a key in generating the right buzz in a bottle club."

4. Offer a Special Cocktail Selection for VIP Guests - If you want to add to the aura of exclusivity, you can offer your VIP clients a special mixed cocktail menu that is not available to regular patrons. I am not talking about substituting Blue Sapphire for Gordon's in a Gin & Tonic, I'm talking about Sofia & Eros (1 ounce vodka, ½ ounce limoncello, ½ ounce raspicello, ½ ounce lemon juice). These are the kinds of exotic drinks whose ingredients are unique, unusual and when combined are a treat to the taste buds. Although these drinks require more ingredients than a vodka & cranberry, the cost of making each drink is not that much greater. However, specialty drinks are routinely priced $5-$10 higher than typical cocktails.

5. Attract Corporate Clients - People who crunch numbers during the day want to party like rock stars at night. A VIP room will allow you to attract the ever-elusive corporate client by allowing "the suits" to feel like "very important people" for an evening. Moreover, corporate reps need to entertain their clients in style and what better place to bring an important client than the VIP room of the hottest bar or nightclub in town. Remember, when the company pays, people spend like mad. It is important to note that there is a right way and a wrong way to operate a VIP area in your establishment. You can't just follow a "if you build it, they will come" philosophy. This is not Field of Dreams and you are not Kevin Costner. However, if operated correctly, a VIP area can generate a "Field of Green." Here are some things to consider when opening and operating a VIP area:

1. VIP Atmosphere - Create a luxury room or area that has great furniture and d├ęcor. Remember, a private room is not necessarily a VIP room, it has to ooze with luxury

2. VIP Menus and Products - Bottle service, exclusive drinks and food menus are some of the most basic VIP room offerings. It is vital to remember that presentation is everything. Be sure to train your staff to present the products well and offer unique service trays. How about a private bar tender for the VIP room who mixes drinks ala Tom Cruise in Cocktail by putting on a bottle tossing spectacle? You get the idea…make the environment special.

3. VIP staff - This is a people business so you have to make sure that you have the best staff servicing your VIP clients. Also make sure that you have a designated security staff watching your VIP area.

4. VIP List - Create a VIP List, talk to promoters and other contacts. Keep the list exclusive and difficult to get on. Send out special invites to VIP Guests. Remember the little touches, call these people on their birthday, send special holiday cards or gifts. It's these actions that make it fun and worthwhile to be a VIP.

5. VIP Recognition Program - this is an important element that speaks for itself. Throw special parties for your VIPs. Offer them incentives to come back. If a VIP spends a certain amount of money, give them a bottle on the house and so on. These days the nightclub business is very competitive and having a VIP room or area is a good way to separate yourself from the competition while putting more money in your own pocket. However, people won't shell out the big bucks just because. They want more than just a place to sit and a bottle to drink, VIPs want to feel like VERY IMPORTANT PEOPLE, and hopefully these tips will help you do that.


  1. Thomas3:55 AM

    I plan on opening a club next year. I like some of the ideas presented in the article it was very informative. Thanks for the info.

  2. Hello, How do I get in touch with you? There is no email or contact info listed .. please advise .. thanks .. Mary. Please contact me maryregency at gmail dot com