Finalizing contracts, initiating build-out of Reno/Tahoe concessions
By Lindsay M. Hitch, Assistant Editor
Preparing to finalize food and beverage and concessions contracts with three vendors, Reno/Tahoe Int’l Airport hopes to increase revenues and customer satisfaction.
Reno/Tahoe Int’l Airport is joining the ranks of airports worldwide
making strides to improve their retail and concessions programs.
"What we’re looking at is customer service," explains Patricia Ryan, manager of business development and property administration.
Under the direction of executive director Krys Bart, the airport has decided to revamp the look of the terminal to achieve greater revenues and customer service.
The food and beverage program will be handled by Select Service Partners, a division of Compass Groups. The Paradies Shops will extend its lease with an agreement to remodel. A third agreement for a candy cart will be signed with Ethel M Chocolates of Henderson, NV, a division of MARS Corporation.
"We’re in the process of finalizing the contracts with all three entities. And we have created an airport staff transition team. The transition team has representatives from each of the major airport divisions with a role in the concessions build-out. Each concessionaire will also have a representative," says Ryan.
With the contracts signed, the first step in the build-out project will be new escalators leading to both concourses. Plans call for initial concessions construction to begin October 1, 2001.
"And we have a staged program where we’ll have food and beverages available throughout this whole transition, so we don’t anticipate losing any customer service," Ryan assures. "We will minimize the inconvenience to the passengers."
Construction plans include a lobby refurbishment to be completed once the concessions are finished. The contract with Compass Groups also calls for a mid-term refurbishment during its 10-year lease.
In addition to the concessions build-out, the airport is beginning a new advertising concept for the Lake Tahoe region.
"When you come into Reno/Tahoe International Airport you will know you’re at Reno/Tahoe," says Ryan.
The plans for new concessions at Reno/Tahoe
strive for variety and convenience. The new program will offer a mix of
national and local brands, including a McDonald’s, Ritazza coffee
shop, and a Brew Brothers restaurant and pub. The airport will incorporate
slot machines and smoking into bars as well.
A new store called Explore Reno/Tahoe will be introduced with the renovations. The store will provide information and products related to events in the area. Visitors to the airport can stop by the shop to learn about events in Reno, Sparks, and Lake Tahoe.
In the agreement with Ethel M, the airport will premiere what’s called a ColorWorks cart.
"M&Ms has created a whole new concept where they have a variety of colors of M&Ms available," Ryan explains. "People that only like lavender M&Ms, for instance, can buy a whole bag of just lavender."