Thursday, February 06, 2014

Two Laguna Woods Village Seniors enter a minibar. .....

 What is GRF looking at down the road for that HUGE piece of property behind the community center employee parking lot and the Ayers motel?

Posted By CotoBlogzz

Laguna Woods Village,  CA - At the Golden Rain Foundation (GRF) board meeting , it discussed a $200,000 bar for the lobby/lounge at the Village Greens  However, GRF failed to have the architect design a bar into the building.  Had the owners been  actively  invited to comment on the proposed Country Club, these architectural oversights may have been caught early during the design phase and before extra money needed to be spent.

The community has been left with a minibar that set up in the lobby, which the O.C. Health Department  has now banned it because it requires a sink and behind the bar, among other things.  The restaurant operator  (“Nineteen”) wants a bar, as it  relies on bar revenue to stay in business.  Without the bar, the restaurant may leave.

To Bar or not to Bar?

The proposed architect-approved  bar costs roughly $200,000 and takes up some 25% of the lobby/lounge. Besides the expense, the question is whether the community needs a  Senior Sport Tavern on game night!

An option floated around  is for a smaller, less expensive bar for less than $50,000 – not clear if this option satisfies the restaurant operator’s needs.

This debacle has prompted a number of interested responses including the following:

GRF Up to its old tricks – stupid is as stupid does

This $200,000 bar was not talked about at the GRF agenda meeting.  It was a another ambush by the "gang of  six".  Some GRF members only heard about it and saw drawing the very day of the meeting. To say that the restaurant will go under if a $200,000 bar isn't installed is just plain ridiculous.

The portable bar we have already paid for should be placed in the indoor dining room near adjacent plumbing and drains.  This would keep the costs minimal.  I heard something like $3000 for 6-8 bar stools.  What the heck are they, hand carved mahogany with precious stone inlays?  GRF needs a reality check.  This wild spending spree they are on is awakening a sleeping giant of very upset residents who feel they are not being listened to, heck, not even being consulted.

GRF members have said that the Corporate Members aren't savvy enough to make big facilities spending decisions.  Apparently when the GRF members were elected, the Corporate Members were supposedly "smart" enough to elect the GRF members.  The Corporate Members did not just wake up stupid one morning.  The Corporate Members still rule this place and the GRF "gang of six" will hopefully soon find themselves looking in from the outside where the "gang of six" belongs.

GRF dutifully says the Pledge of Allegiance at the beginning of the GRF Board meetings.  I wonder how many of them truly understand what "justice for all" really means.

BTW....what is GRF looking at down the road for that HUGE piece of property behind the community center employee parking lot and the Ayers motel?  That has to be one of the most valuable pieces of real estate of its size in Orange County.  Are there plans in the offing for that area? 

Other Options

I’d rather go outside the gates if there is no real benefit to sitting at 200K Village Green bar...atmosphere, music, etc.  I’m not a golfer, and I’m getting a tad miffed at the amount of money going to prop up the golfers, their desires, and the terrible architectural decisions OK’d by GRF for an inadequate building.  The history of the Village since it opened is evidence. bar.  There’s been enough of my money spent on that poorly designed building.  I want to see my monthlies to back to where they were two years the minimum.  Can we get serious, folks?

False Choice Alternative
Surely there is a solution that is not all or nothing.  Yes, this should have all been considered during the drawing up of plans.  Hopefully we are learning from this for the future.  I too believe $200k is very high for a simple bar and why we need more than a simple bar I do not know.

As Patrick Murphy said at the GRF meeting, beer and wine with dinner should probably be enough for our purposes and that doesn't require a bar at all.  I also do not want the liability that could come from a full bar with folks driving afterward. Or drunk people hanging out there.  That would make it a place I would never want to go.

I also like the lobby as it was designed.  I haven't used it a lot, but it is a very pleasant place and I would hate to lose most of it for nothing but an elaborate bar.
It is too bad no one ever discussed this in a committee meeting before it became so time sensitive, but that is hardly a reason to spend $200K.  I personally hate being pressured into making a big money decision because of some one else's schedule.

I think we should still have a bar but get simpler, more realistic plans.

Stay tuned!

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