Since 2010 the average age of our membership has dropped nearly a decade, a phenomenon nearly unheard-of in the private club industry! With the ‘young professional’ family quickly becoming our fastest growing demographic our youth programs have seen an exponential increase in popularity and profitability.
In the past three years, the daily number of children we care for in our kids’ club has more than doubled. Ever conscious of maintaining a safe ratio of child to supervisor, we find ourselves repeatedly turning away families due to lack of capacity in our kids’ club.
One of the last things we want to do is to tell a member “no”, but unfortunately when the facility prevents you from being able to say “yes” that is our only option. We know our kids’ club is one of our best assets, frequently cited among one of the reasons for joining by new members.
Our youth camps and events have continued to grow in popularity as well. One of our biggest challenges with this growth is we lack a proper space to house our events without displacing non-campers or interrupting other activities. Our youth room, located at the main entrance of the club, is an unsupervised room designed for older children to use as a place to watch TV, play games, do homework and hang out with friends. When we hold camps or other special events, we use this room leaving other children no location of their own to hang out.
We have tried to utilize the upper squash area for events, however that too has been problematic. If members are playing squash or racquetball, or if an event is in progress in the Hall of Fame room, the youth camp/event likely disturbs the other activity in progress.
To address our kids’ club and youth areas challenges, we propose two projects:
- Expand the kids’ club into the Tack Room. We would create a second children’s facility in the space now occupied by the Tack Room connected to our existing space. This would provide for two areas for supervised child care divided by age groups.But the Tack Room… WHAT?!? Yes. While our Tack Room has been a great part of our Club for many years, it is not nearly as frequently used as it once was. Tack Room usage and revenues have continue to steadily decline for many years. The two areas share walls and could be easily connected for expansion.
We do have a small group of members that do still enjoy the Tack Room and we want to address their wants. We believe the restaurant and bar renovation will create a very desirable location for casual dining, sports viewing and card playing. We have also identified some underutilized space within the men’s locker room that could easily be converted to a private card playing area for those members that enjoy the more secluded feel the Tack Room currently provides.
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02. Convert the upper squash area to a multipurpose room. To accomplish this, we will install drywall and sliding glass windows above each court opening. We will also add soundproofing to control noise for nearby banquet areas and upgrade the furnishings, finishes and audio visual equipment. This space will become a multi-functional area able to be used for a variety of purposes such as youth camps, private functions, member events, etc. The movable windows allow for open communication during court play and prevent disturbances from events above during play below. What can currently be considered ‘dead space’ in the Club will now be converted into a very functional, revenue-generating room.This new space will be enjoyed by more than our youth. Its décor and contents will appeal to a large scope of our members, however, converting this space will also free up the current youth room and allow that room to be used for its intended purpose.