‘Invite to Midnight’ plan seeks to make future events safer for guests and employees
June 23, 2020 – Cescaphe, Philadelphia’s premier venues and event planning company, today announced an extensive set of new health and safety standards for events in response to the coronavirus pandemic. Cescaphe’s ‘Invite to Midnight’ plan outlines dozens of new protocol changes to help ensure that, at every touchpoint, the company is making its events as safe as possible for guests and staff while maintaining the sophisticated aesthetic that sets its events apart. Once large gatherings are permitted by city and state regulators, these changes will be implemented across all Cescaphe venues and adhered to at all events for the foreseeable future.
“Cescaphe has been at the forefront of the weddings and events industry for 17 years and our business model uniquely positions us to develop and execute upon these new standards,” said Joe Volpe, co-founder and CEO, Cescaphe. “Every day I talk to couples who can’t wait to celebrate one of life’s milestones with their friends and family. We took this time to chart the path forward so that we’re uniquely prepared to help our clients celebrate these moments when it’s deemed safe to do so. We’re working closely with our industry peers, as well as city and state regulators, to set new health and safety standards for private events that have been necessitated by the current environment.”
Cescaphe has significantly increased sanitation protocol in five key areas and anticipates that the below new standards – a sampling of the full list – will be adhered to at all future events, once large gatherings are permitted by city and state regulators. All new procedures under the company’s ‘Invite to Midnight’ plan have been developed in partnership with Cescaphe’s longstanding partner, MBB Hospitality, an industry leader in hospitality management. While these changes meet or exceed current guidelines established by the CDC, FDA, SafeServ and local municipality regulations, many will go unnoticed by guests, as the work to implement them is done before the event begins or after it ends. As new information emerges, Cescaphe will continue to work with city and state officials to evolve these protocols.
1. Contact Tracing. Guest contact information and table number will be kept on file for 60 days for contact tracing purposes.
2. Venue Capacity and Guest Spacing. Venue capacities will be reduced, allowing for proper social distancing between guests. Chairs during wedding ceremonies will be further apart and the number of chairs per table at dinner will be reduced.
3. Food and Drink Service. All food leaving the kitchen will be domed for protection from the airborne particles. Dishes delivered tableside will be places with serving napkins, reducing contact between servers and plates. Chefs will now be behind every action and service station to reduce guest-to-station contact and all stations will feature low-profile translucent partitions to prevent the transfer of airborne particles or droplets. Also, all reusable bar towels will be replaced with single-use sanitizing wipes.
4. Hand Washing. All staff will be required to wash, sanitize, and re-glove their hands every 20 minutes during food service, and all team members must wash their hands when entering and leaving the kitchen.
5. High-Touch Surfaces. A new front-of-house sanitation supervisor position has been established to ensure high-touch surfaces such as door handles, faucets and common-use tables are continually sanitized throughout the duration of events. Gloved doormen will be responsible for opening doors at primary entrances and exits to minimize guest contact.
In addition to the sanitation protocol changes, Cescaphe has spearheaded a coalition of private event professionals in Pennsylvania to work with government officials and highlight the key difference in the private event industry. Private events are unique because entry and guest lists can be controlled, they can mandate health affirmations and reduce seating, there is no exchange of payment and there is a more apparent general social responsibility shared amongst family and friends.
“Over the past 20 years, we have worked with international hotel chains, iconic restaurants and highly trafficked casinos on a variety of operations improvement initiatives,” said John Moser, founder and president, MBB Management. “In partnering with Joe and the Cescaphe team to develop these sanitation standards in response to what will be a ‘new normal’ for events, we went above and beyond the steps that any other organization is taking. Cescaphe has long been a forward-thinking leader and this new action plan further proves its commitment to producing safe, responsible events.
To certify that its nearly 500 full- and part-time Cescaphe employees are proficient in these new standards, the company has created a proprietary virtual health and safety program consisting of 12 classes on the following topics: General Sanitation, Kitchen Cleaning & Breakdown, Kitchen Prep & Service, Operational Cleanliness, Greeting the Guest, Cocktail Hour Food Service, Bar Service and Dinner Service.
Cescaphe has been able to retain 100% of its core full-time staff, pay them in full and use this time to train them on new health and safety standards. Staff has been virtually attending all classes deemed necessary by their department and have been tested at the end of each class to confirm retention of information.
ABOUT CESCAPHE EVENT GROUP:
Cescaphe is Philadelphia’s premier wedding brand. Founded by Joe and Andrea Volpe in 2003, the business has grown froma small company producing dream weddings at Cescaphe Ballroom, to a team of trend-setting experts coordinating extraordinary weddings at six distinctively unique, gorgeously appointed venues throughout Philadelphia. Today, Cescaphe orchestrates over 800 weddings per year exclusively at Cesaphce Ballroom, Tendenza, Vie, Down Town Club, Water Works and the Lucy. Learn more at www.cescaphe.com