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Renovations/Site Evaluations: How to Plan, Budget and Complete
a Renovation in a Cost and Time Efficient Manner

Current economic conditions are causing operators of commercial food & beverage facilities, not the least of which are Hotels, Restaurants and Casinos, to concentrate their efforts on making certain that their current facilities are fresh looking, operationally cost and environmentally efficient. This translates into the owner looking at the need to renovate the property.

When planning a new Food, Beverage & Laundry facility you begin with a space that in most cases allows you to fill in the blanks. With a Renovation the space comes with existing conditions that need to be addressed and which can open a whole can of worms. It is not just a matter of replacing some old pieces of equipment, fixing some floor tile and adding a fresh coat of paint. 

Renovations involve more than just the removal of existing facilities, in whole or in part, and making minor repairs etc. Knowing in advance what “Must” be done and carefully evaluating, budgeting, and coordinating with the right Team will provide many benefits to the Owner, not the least of which is avoiding surprises that could be very costly and cause unexpected delays.

The information contained herein describes some of the issues that need to be considered and some recommendations as to how to proceed in an orderly manner. 

Questions that need to be answered at the start:

1. What is the purpose of the Renovation?

a) Just a face lift?
b) Change in menu?
c) Part of Overall Renovation of the property?
d) Operational cost efficiency?
2.  What changes are planned for the front end, that will affect the back of the House operation?

3.  What is the condition of both the facility and existing equipment?

a) What will it cost to repair as opposed to replace? (keep in mind that if for any reason some equipment will remain but may have to be removed to make wall and other repairs, connection gaskets and other parts may break during this process an render the items un-repairable)

b) What is the condition of the floors? (Broken tiles and cracked floors can be an indication of grease seeping into the floor and be a costly repair situation). Floors that are not level could cause installation problems.

c) What is the operating condition of the refrigeration system?

d) Will the existing utilities be sufficient to support the changes planned?

e) What will need to be done to bring the new facility up to current Code requirements?

f) Will the existing HVAC support the changes planned?

g) Is the current fire safety system connected properly to the Hotel/Casino System? (In older properties this is a serious consideration and presents a whole different set of concerns)

4. Is there a set of ‘As Built” plans available for planning, as well as Governmental permitting purposes?

How do you address these questions so as to proceed in an orderly fashion?

1. Due Diligence

In order to have a full understanding of what you may be in for, before starting the project select an experienced kitchen planning and equipment company to do a Due Diligence Study of the existing site. From experience I can tell you that this will be one of the best investments you have ever made and will save you many dollars, as well as problems as the project unfolds.  
2. Team Selection

Choose an experienced Team, including, an Architect, G/C, MEP, HVAC and a KEC (who is a full service planning and equipment specialist with full knowledge of the kinds of issues described earlier), including current local Governmental Code requirements, as well as ADA and who has experience in working with the agencies involved. 

Bernie Otis is a highly respected and knowledgeable Food, Beverage & Laundry Consultant, as well as a Writer, Speaker and Marketing /Sales Specialist. Working with Kamran and Company, Inc. his, well as their expertise in the planning, specification, equipment purchasing and installation of food service facilities is utilized by major hotels casinos, universities, hospitals and restaurants nationwide

Bernie Can be reached at (800) 230-2928, Access Code 00, Email: 


Bernard S. Otis
Director Hospitality/Gaming/Resorts
Kamran  and Company, Inc.
15270 Sutton Street, #109
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403
(800) 230-2928 Access Code 00

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