The Most Versatile Podium on the Market – The Custom Deluxe Valet Podium

We are excited to announce a product we’ve been designing over the past year has come to fruition. the brand new Custom Deluxe podium was designed for individuals looking for a truly one of a kind valet podium that matches a specific decor without having the cost of a custom built valet podium.

When we originally presented this idea to our design team they had some serious doubts. It’s not an easy task to create a custom podium to match any decor and keeping the price point down seemed nearly impossible. However, our design team came up with a solution after coming across a company by the name of Wilson Arts.

By offering hundreds of laminate options, adding the ability to brand the podium panels with custom artwork or graphics and making the panels interchangeable so they easily slip in and out (just like a picture into a picture frame) we achieved our goal.

Custom Deluxe Podium with Rediscovered Oak Laminate

This allows customers to achieve any look they might be going for, ranging from a rustic winery to a Hollywood red carpet event or a Las Vegas nightclub that wants to promote various shows. The possibilities are literally almost endless!

Custom Deluxe Podium with Black Acrylic Panels & LEDs

The Custom Deluxe podium is elegant enough to match the decor of any high-end establishment. It is the perfect valet podium for any business that is looking for a podium that stands out because of its craftsmanship.

There is also an optional LED kit on the Custom Deluxe podium which makes the panels glow if you choose colored acrylic or provides ambient backlighting if you choose to go with black acrylic or laminate panels. The LED kit also comes with a remote operated controller which has multiple speed, brightness, and color settings. The included 8 colors options are: cyan, purple, white, orange, yellow, green, blue, and red.

If you are looking for a custom podium without the price of one the Custom Deluxe podium is exactly what you’ve been looking for. Try building your own custom podium using our online builder today to get a better idea of how many options are available.

How a Lack of Parking Can Ruin a Business

Portable Valet Podium at Coyo Taco Restaurant

A successful business is one that attracts customers and keeps them coming back. Everything about a business should aim for that goal. Despite having a great line-up of products and excellent service, not every business achieves that goal because of one simple, yet fairly common problem: a lack of parking space and failing to offer valet parking service.

One of the aspects often overlooked by restaurants, cafes and many other businesses that rely on a steady flow of customers coming in and out of their business is parking. In order to have a successful business, it is essential to find a business that is equipped with enough parking spaces to cater to the needs of the customers and the employees or manage your parking spaces by offering a valet parking service. Simple parking space shortages can cause a lot of problems for the business in the long run. It’s important to maximize the potential of your business by managing your parking spaces just like a restaurant manages seating for guests.

Nobody likes to drive around the block several times to find a space to park, it could potentially drive clients away to look for a similar business with better parking space options. This is particularly true when it comes to customers with disabilities. For some people, it is simply not an option to use anything other than valet parking.

The best way to determine what the actual parking requirements are for your business is to conduct research on similar businesses around your location. Determine the volume of traffic during peak hours to have a reference on how much parking space your business would require. If you come to the conclusion you have a lack of parking, look into offering valet service before searching for a new place to do business.

A parking shortage is a serious problem, but it is something that can be avoided or remedied by managing your parking lot by offering valet service or hiring a management company to do it for you.

 

Eliminate Holiday Parking Hassles by Managing Your Parking Lot

Toronto Mall Parking Lot During the Holidays

With less than four weeks until Christmas, cities around the world are packed full of busy shoppers stocking up on their presents. This of course also means malls, shopping center parking lots and parking garages will be jammed this holiday season. Unpredictable traffic patterns are inevitable during the holiday shopping season, which is why it’s important to utilize every parking space available. 

This is where parking management or valet service comes into play. Consumers are pre-occupied with shopping during the holiday season and do not need the additional stress of roaming parking lots for hours looking for a parking spot. It is becoming common practice for stores, malls, restaurants and even coffee shops to hire a parking management company or valet service during the holiday season. Some are even choosing to manage their own parking operations internally.

Research shows that heart rates tend to increase by 33 percent while Christmas shopping – which is on par with the increase while running a marathon. This is not necessarily what your customers are looking to do on the way into your place of business. Managing your parking so potential customers do not have this type of an experience during the holiday season will ensure those window shoppers actually make it into your business.

2017 NPA Expo & Valet Olympics Highlights

The National Valet Olympics is a skills competition representing valet teams from both the public and private sectors. This year’s biennial competition showcased the professionalism and speed of front-line employees serving parkers throughout North America.

The 2017 National Valet Olympics was held at the Palm Beach Convention Center in Palm Springs, CA. The teams competed in four events:

  • Key Box Challenge
  • Luggage Load
  • Precision Parking
  • Valet Relay

Valet OlympicsAfter two days of competition, the National Parking Association crowned Towne Park’s Twain Frazier as the nation’s Best Valet.  The team from Towne Park also came in first overall. The Annapolis-based valet company took home the Herb Citrin Trophy, named for the late “father of valet parking” and the founder/owner of Valet Parking Service.

LAZ Parking based in Hartford, CT, was the second place team overall and in third place was Advanced Parking ConceptsVerona, NJ. Coming in fourth place was Aristocrat/Ambassador ValetSt. Louis. MO. In addition to the skills competition, NPA Convention attendees participated in the Valet Olympics by voting for the valet team with the best uniform—won by LAZ Parking. Advanced Parking Concepts won team with the best attitude.

“Through the Olympic trials and the National Valet Olympics itself, competing teams built morale and instilled the spirit of friendly competition,” said NPA President Christine Banning, CAE. The Valet Olympics concluded with an award lunch, and competing companies shared best practices.

2017 Valet Parking Podium Buying Guide

Tips for Purchasing Valet Parking Podiums

If you’re in the market for new parking equipment, you know that most likely you’re about to spend a good chunk of change.  You also know the choices you make are ones you’ll have to live with for years to come.  That’s why it’s vital to make an informed decision that’s the perfect fit for your parking operation and your budget.

The Valet Spot has a wealth of information for you on most major pieces of parking equipment, from podiums and delineator parking signs to key boxes and valet tickets. Not only does this information come from years of designing and testing parking equipment, this information comes from industry insiders who have used and dealt with every conceivable kind of parking service for more years than most people could shake a stick at.  And while these posts may not make your decision any easier, they certainly will help you make a smarter one.

Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Valet Parking Podium

1. Size

The “right” size of valet podium depends on how many customers you provide service during your busiest time of the season and the amount of space that will be available at the locations the podium will be used. With a properly sized valet podium, you will realize the time and cost-saving benefits of having faster customer service and lower equipment maintenance and replacement costs.  Simply put, having the right size of valet podium leads to cost savings and a smooth running valet parking operation. On the flip side, an undersized valet podium not only increases wait times, it runs the risk of being overloaded leading to costly repairs or replacements.

The most common standard valet podium size is 24″ x 48″, but your needs may vary depending on how much storage and display space is available.

2. Weight

After size and style, the weight of valet podium is typically the largest deciding factor. Though at first glance it might seem they would be similar, there are significant differences between the weight of most parking podiums. Some podiums are designed to be lightweight and portable where others are designed to stay at one location but can easily be moved around. There are also podiums that are pretty much designed to be stationary.

Currently, the lightest weight valet podium on the market is the Portable Valet Podium at 70 lbs.

3. Style, Design & Finish

Style and design can do as much for a cafe, hotel, restaurant or bar as good service, food and drinks can. This is true even when it comes to the outside of the establishment. First impressions mean everything and the valet podium is usually one of the first things a customer encounters. That’s why it’s important to have a valet podium that reflects the pride you take in your business. The same goes for parking garages, airport valet service, mall valet service and any other establishment that is parking your car. Just ask yourself….would you feel safe handing your keys over to a valet parking operation that did not look 100% professional?

4. Quality & Durability

There are various types of valet podiums made for all types of weather conditions. In order to get the maximum longevity out of your podium, it’s important to pick the right type of podium for the conditions it will be in. Will it be inside or outside the majority of the time? Are you located on the coast where corrosion is a factor? We took all these things into account when developing our podiums designed for harsh environments.

That’s why we created a comparison guide to help you decide which podium is right for you. Click here to download a pdf version of the guide.

Valet Podium Comparison Guide

 

Makers of high-quality podiums like The Valet Spot have a reputation for quality that we’re obligated to maintain. One of the main indicators of meeting a high standard of quality is ensuring that our product performance exceeds your expectations. Make sure you are purchasing a podium that has a reputation for being reliable from a company that stands behind their product.

Do you have any other questions about valet podiums and their differences?  What are you looking for in a new valet podium?  Let us know!

Make sure to subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!

The Valet Spot is the Official Sponsor of the 2017 Valet Olympics!

We are proud to announce The Valet Spot is the official sponsor of the 2017 National Valet Olympics! If you are attending this year’s show you will have a chance to see some of our products in action.

The 66th National Parking Association (NPA) & Exposition will be taking place in conjunction with the biennial 2017 National Valet Olympics October 2nd-5th at the Renaissance Palm Springs Hotel in Palm Springs, CA.

The Valet Olympics is an international skills competition where valet teams of four from valet parking companies across the nation showcase their professionalism and skills in hopes of winning the coveted Herb Citron trophy.

On Wednesday, October 4th, teams will compete in the Key Jumble and Luggage Load. On Thursday, October 5th, teams will compete in the Precision Parking and Valet Relay. The Valet Olympics will conclude with a Valet Olympics award ceremony and lunch.

In 2015 the competing valet teams were from the following parking companies: Advanced Parking Concepts, Ameripark, LAZ Parking, Parksman Parking, Towne Park, Ultimate Hospitality and Universal Parking.

The Valet Olympics allow valet parking companies to showcase their professionalism on a national stage by competing against peers in the valet parking sector, building staff morale and instilling the spirit of friendly competition.

In 2015 the National Parking Association (NPA) crowned AmeriPark’s Katie Richards as the nation’s Best Valet. The team from AmeriPark also came in first overall. The Atlanta-based valet and self-parking company took home the Herb Citrin Trophy.

Advanced Parking Concepts, based in Verona, NJ, was the second place team overall and in third place was Ultimate Parking of Boston, MA. In addition to the skills competition, NPA Convention attendees participated in the Valet Olympics by voting for the valet team that was best dressed and displayed the best attitude. The winner of both those awards was Advanced Parking Concepts.

The Valet Olympics are presented by NPA’s Valet Council, the Valet Olympics Committee and NPA’s Convention Program Planning Committee.

For more information on the National Valet Olympics and the 2017 NPA Convention & Exposition, go to www.npaconvention.org/2017/

Why Every Wedding Venue Should Offer Valet Service

 

Just like hotels and restaurants wedding venues usually offer valet parking, and if they don’t they should. You’ve got the venue, flowers, food and drinks all set for the wedding season, but one crucial component to a successful wedding is often overlooked, valet parking and transportation services. Every bride wants every little thing to go right on her special day and having guests have parking issues before or after the event is the last thing she wants to worry about. Optional valet service is definitely a factor when a bride is choosing a wedding venue.

There are many benefits to valet service at a wedding venue:

  • Add’s elegance  – The bride and groom put a lot of work into their special day, and more than likely, so have their guests. Many will have bought new outfits and gifts, some have even bought plane tickets and rented cars to get there. Valet service at the wedding add’s that touch of elegance and let’s the guests know their attendance is appreciated.
  • It saves time – Often having a lack of it is a huge issue for wedding planners. Sometimes you need to move guests from the wedding to the reception venue quickly or clear out a venue for another party. Valets are a quick and efficient way to ensure nobody misses a minute of your ceremony or reception, and that one party does not delay another. This is a risk you run when your guests don’t exit in a timely manner.
  • Increases safety – Weddings almost always have elderly guests attending, having highly trained professionals helping them in and out of their vehicles can prevent a potential accident.

A wedding is a special day and a bride and groom want the best of everything. Valet parking service is an efficient, affordable solution to many issues that can arise on this joyful yet hectic day. A valet is the first and last point of contact when guests attend the ceremony. Valet service at a wedding venue ensures that guests leave with a lasting, positive impression.

The Valet Spot designed a portable valet podium specifically with wedding venues in mind. It has an interchangeable front sign that can be customized for each wedding and folds for easy transportation and storage. It also has an easy grip handle and only weighs 70 lbs.

 

How to Care for Your Valet Podium

How to Care for Your Podium

Proper maintenance will ensure you get the maximum life out of your valet podium. Here are a few tips on valet parking podium maintenance that will keep your podium operating like it did the day you bought it.

Surface

Wipe down the surface of your podium with soap and water and dry properly with a chamois. Once dry wipe Valet Podium Maintenance Tipsdown once more with a dry microfiber towel.

Handles

Tighten all handles monthly to ensure hardware does not become loose and fall off.

Casters

Don’t roll your podium while the casters are locked. If you are moving your podium across rough terrain make sure the casters do not get stuck in any large holes or gaps to prevent them from getting stuck and breaking off.

LED’s

Don’t charge the battery at the same time as running your LED’s. Do not allow the battery to get wet.

Rust

Rust is an important issue to address quickly. We recommend using Rust-Oleum and touch up paint as preventative maintenance.

Door

If you are having issues with the small spring latch that connects to your door feel free to call us for a replacement.

Drawer Tracks

We spray your drawer tracks with White Lightening Grease before we ship and recommend spraying yours every 2 months.

Internal Drawer Tracks

Internal drawer tracks need to be tightened an average of once a month depending on use to keep the screws from loosening and falling off.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steels need to be cleaned for aesthetic considerations and to preserve corrosion resistance. Stainless Stainless Steel Valet Podiumsteel is protected from corrosion by a thin layer of chromium oxide. Oxygen from the atmosphere combines with the chromium in the stainless steel to form this passive chromium oxide film that protects from further corrosion. Any contamination of the surface by dirt, or other material, hinders this passivation process and traps corrosive agents, reducing corrosion protection. Thus, some form of routine cleaning is necessary to preserve the appearance and integrity of the surface. Stainless steels are easily cleaned by many different methods. They actually thrive with frequent cleaning, and, unlike some other materials, it is impossible to “wear out” stainless steel by excessive cleaning.

1. Use the proper tools

  • Non-abrasive tools, like soft cloths and plastic scouring pads
  • Stainless steel pads (scrub in direction of polishing marks)

2. Clean with the polish lines or “grain”

  • Scrub in a motion parallel to the lines when visible lines are present
  • Use a microfiber cloth or plastic scouring pad when grain cannot be seen

3. Use alkaline, alkaline chlorinated or non-chloride containing cleaners

  • Ask your supplier for an alternative if your present cleaner contains chlorides
  • Avoid cleaners containing quaternary salts to avoid pitting and rusting

4. Treat your water

  • Reduce deposits by softening hard water
  • Install filters to remove distasteful and corrosive elements

5. Rinse, rinse, rinse

  • Rinse and wipe equipment and supplies if chlorinated cleaners are used, dry immediately
  • Wipe off standing water as soon as possible, especially when it contains cleaning agents

6. Never use hydrochloric acid (muriatic acid) on stainless steel

7. Regularly restore/passivate stainless steel

Why Every Hospitality Company Should Offer Valet Parking

SignatureParking 3

 

Whatever type of hospitality venture you may be setting up, you should think carefully about how guests will be arriving and the first impression that you want them to have about your business.

One of the best possible ways to make a strong impression is with valet parking. Here are five reasons why offering valet parking makes a lot of sense:

1. FIRST IMPRESSIONS ARE EVERYTHING!!!

Most people make their first impressions of a business within 3 to 5 seconds of arriving at the establishment, that’s usually in the parking lot. Because of this, it’s advisable to find ways to make a great first impression with your customer.

2. GET CUSTOMERS INTO THE BUSINESS FASTER

Do you want prospective customers worrying about where they should park their car, becoming frustrated, and deciding to go elsewhere with their business? Remove indecision from the process by ensuring that when they arrive a valet collects the car keys from them, and safely parks their car for them. This way, the prospective customer can walk directly into the hotel lobby and start their experience on a positive note.

3. PORTABLE VALET PODIUMS OFFER FLEXIBLE PARKING ORGANIZATION

When purchasing a valet podium, it is a good idea to choose one that is made from steel and has heavy duty casters so that it can easily be moved depending on the location or the event being held. This ensures that however the place is organized for the evening, the valet operation can be placed in the most convenient location for guests and visitors. Valet podiums can hold anywhere from 50 keys up to 200 keys which makes them able to handle valet parking at major events.

4. A COURTEOUS CONVENIENCE

Not every customer will be used to dealing with valets and having their vehicle parked for them. Only certain restaurants, hotels and other types of businesses offer this sort of luxurious experience. It is useful to have friendly, courteous valet staff.

5. CONTROL PARKING SPACES

Depending on how many spaces are available in the parking lot, it is possible to end up with customers parking in spaces that are reserved or designated for another use. This sort of situation needs to be avoided or customers can receive fines or even be towed. Simplifying the process when arriving at the business creates a smoother customer experience and ensures parking spaces are used properly.

Valet parking is a service which separates average businesses from the ones that go the extra mile for their customers. Offering valet parking ensures that your business will be remembered for all the right reasons.

How Parking Signs Help Valet Parking Operation’s Run Smoothly

Rolls Royce parked at Ocean Drive in Miami Beach, Florida. Photo taken at 14th of November 2009

Parking Signs Help Every Business.

First impressions are everything, the customer experience a business creates for itself begins on the very first interaction. Usually that’s when they are researching your business or product online. However, often times the first interaction a customer has with your business is in the parking lot, that’s why parking signs are key.

Keeping your parking lot free of traffic and moving in the right direction is extremely important for any business. Whether your parking area could use valet parking signs or directional parking signs the use of parking signs will decrease customer frustration and increase revenue.

Having parking signs in the parking lot of your business help’s visitors avoid parking frustrations so they are not the first thing your customers experience. The proper signs will decrease traffic, increase parking revenue and make your valet parking operation run like a well oiled machine.

Valet Parking Signs

Valet parking signs immediately inform your visitors valet parking is an option. When customers enter your business’ parking lot, they have just had there first interaction with your business. Once they’re in your parking lot, it’s up to you to create a positive valet parking experience by having visible valet parking signs and fast, friendly valet service.

Valet parking signs will also assist your employees by directing vehicles to the drop off points that are designated at the lobby or entrance of your establishment.

●Stop Here for Valet (with stop sign)

●Valet

valet-delineator-parking-sign

Directional Parking Signs

Directional parking signs, with valet parking messages and arrows that lead to your parking lot, are essential signs that literally drive people to your door. These parking signs are also useful if valet parking is available at your facility.

Business parking lots can become busy. The best way to keep traffic moving in the right direction is by displaying directional parking signs. Directional signs keep the traffic in parking lots flowing smoothly and cut down driver frustration for those who are new to visiting your business.

These types of signs will let your visitors know exactly which way they need to drive. Directional parking signs include:

●Valet Parking (with arrow)

●Pull Forward (with arrow)

●Valet Parking & Self Parking (with arrow)

directional-valet-parking-signs

Custom Parking Signs

Add custom signage
Add custom signage

Entrance and Exit Signs 

Similar to the use of parking ahead signs, entrance and exit signs help to control the flow of traffic in your parking lot. By giving drivers clear direction, you can avoid mini traffic jams caused by cars going the wrong way or preforming U-turns.

Speed Limit Signs

Speed limit signs aren’t only for the street. Drivers looking for open parking spots or moving through private drives can easily lose track of their speed and become dangers to other people and property.

Posting speed limit signs, along with installing speed control devices like speed bumps, help to remind drivers that they are no longer on the open road, and that slower speeds should be observed.

Stop Signs

In addition to other traffic control measures, stop signs can prevent unsafe driving practices in your lot. Drivers will be less inclined to speed if they see an upcoming stop sign, and if used near loading zones, they can give delivery trucks an opportunity to enter and exit the loading dock.

Stop signs can also be posted at the exit of your lot. This reminds drivers to check the traffic around them, and to look for any nearby pedestrians that do not see vehicles leaving your parking lot.