In this episode of C+RB’s video series, Haissam Baityeh, Chief Operating Officer of the South Carolina club, describes how an innovative and cost-effective renovation approach led to a doubling of average daily attendance at the pool, a more than 100% boost in snack-bar drink revenue, and a 70% increase in overall food-and-beverage sales. It also contributed this year to the club’s first positive net gain in membership in more than 20 years.
“The Road Back” video series from Club + Resort Business provides fresh insights into how club and resort properties are meeting the challenges posed by the pandemic and finding new and innovative ways to boost business levels and start their return to full operation.
When Haissam Baityeh, CCM, CCE, became the new Chief Operating Officer at The Country Club of Spartanburg (S.C.) two years ago, he knew that addressing the pool, which he describes as just being a “box of water,” was a top priority to increase the club’s appeal to families.
A $2 million-plus pool renovation plan had been spec’d out, but then a much more cost-effective way was found to create what Baityeh says has now become a “magnetic attraction,” by using the existing shell, without any demolition, to introduce a zero-entry section with splash pad, while also adding a large slide and maintaining a 25-yard, deeper section for older kids, adults and competitions.
“We tried to work with what we had and ended up with an unbelievable project,” Baityeh says.
The payoffs have included a doubling of the pool’s average daily attendance, a more than 100% boost in snack-bar drink revenue, and a 70% increase in overall food-and-beverage sales. Just as importantly, the pool’s successful transformation has generated pride and confidence among the existing membership, creating momentum for a dining room renovation, and has contributed this year to the club’s first positive net gain in membership in more than 20 years.
Some of the cost of the project was covered by member donations, and Baityeh says he’s had several contributors tell him “it was the best money they’ve ever spent.”
(Viewing time: 12 1/2 minutes)
Previous episodes of “The Road Back” can be viewed at https://clubandresortbusiness.com/category/the-road-back/
Upcoming episodes will feature how one club has encouraged its members to be active by competing in an intraclub triathlon, another club’s innovative approach to boosting employee morale through a creative breakroom concept, and more.
If you have a great idea or success story you’d like to see featured on a future episode of “The Road Back,” contact firstname.lastname@example.org.