FRANKS: SERVING THE SL COMMUNITY FOR 15 YEARS – JOSH (THOMAS1 BELLIC) REPORTING

1 month ago 82

No exposé’ on popular romantic sims in SL would be complete without including the various iterations of Franks that are to be found by the intrepid entertainment aficionado.  Long a mainstay of the “Fine Dancing” genre, Franks Entertainment Group, consisting of five separate entertainment venues, ranks among the finest on the grid.  

While attending a Tina Turner tribute concert a few nights ago, I happened upon Mr. William Zeta, Owner of Franks Entertainment Group.  While Miss Turner was off-stage changing costumes, I managed to corral Mr. Zeta and ply him with questions about this most remarkable and Iconic venue.

Josh (Thomas 1 Bellic)  (JB)  Hi William. Thanks for agreeing to chat with me. What a gorgeous place you have here. Frank's Elite has long been iconic among the fine dancing venues in SecondLife. How did you happen to get involved in this business?

William Zeta (WZ):   Thank you very much. Frank's Entertainment Group (FEG) has a very long tradition in second life. Fortunately, from the beginning, I've been part of that (some as inspiration but mainly as a silent partner paying tier fees). For example, folks might not know, Sphynx Jazz Club was where Nanceee (the original founder and sole owner) first danced in SL, my home SL became what is Frank's Elite today, and my home's name Chateau d'Sphynx inspired the name for our famous dining experience—Chateau d'Elite.   And, when Nanceee left, she handed the baton to me. 

I'm proud of the history of Frank's Entertainment Group and excited about the future of Frank's. 

JB:  I understand Frank's Elite is not the only venue you manage. In fact, I have heard there are actually five main venues. Tell me about those please?

WZ:  Frank's has been in existence for 15 years now. We have seen many copy our name, even use our builds, and tag our name in their social media to use all the good nature and experiences we have built over time. But I would like to clear up some misinformation; all of our venues have been in continuous operation, are open, and are the first of their kind venues and experiences in Second Life:

·         Frank's Jazz—This venue is open to all, with DJs, live singers, and an event or two poolside (don't miss the Playdolls monthly pool party:).

·         Frank's Elite Jazz—Our private club with events and shows for members only.

·         Bogart's Karaoke Bar & Cafe—Our fun and informal space that releases the singing performer in you.

·         Sphynx Jazz—Our small intimate performance venue, with the tagline, "bring your ID, not your EGO."

·         Chateau d'Elite—Our private dining venue

We also have many smaller spaces to enjoy from Nina's Hall, Chez Frank, Elite's Chapel, Frank's Jazz Pool & Beach, etc.

JB:  Surely an operation this size is more than a one-man show. Who are some of the key folks who help in sim development and management?

WZ:  “Man show” is probably the wrong gender! We have a great team of women that are inspiring! First is Ms. Persia, our GM, and my right (also left) hand woman. She has an incredible work ethic and attention to operations that allow Frank's, to be Frank's. Sphynx Jazz Club is run by Ms. Yukie Le.   Ms. Pru is our decorating expert. DJ Patrick produces CUTS. DJ Filo focuses on marketing. And, our builds are done by Mr. Wetherby. Ms. Nina, Ms. Tali, Ms. Quinn, Ms. Rosa, Ms. Ninette, Ms. Jenn, Ms. Rati, and Ms. Jolie are critical parts of our management team. And we're excited that Ms. Petra Steele recently joined us, focusing on creating new types of events.    Talk about a powerhouse team!   And, of course, our team is supported by many wonderful hosts, DJs, and live singers! 

JB:  So…what is it that makes your venues different from all the other Dance venues out there?

WZ:  We never forget who is first and foremost in our minds every day. All our decisions begin with and end with how this benefits those who visit our venues. In fact, I spend a significant amount of time talking with members about their experiences. They have taught me much. We know that people feel better when they leave our venues. It is always reassuring to hear from our VIPs, members, and guests who say their first or significant second life events happen at a FEG venue.

Another key difference is that our purpose is the experience in our venues and the quality of our services. I mean, look at our team! Have you ever seen a large and talented group like ours focusing on guests and members? That's their sole job. That's meant to engage and delight! 

Lastly, we invest heavily in developing our own technology specific to our venues. For example, none of the karaoke systems were available as simple and easy to use for streams and voice, so we wrote our own.   We use a new event production system for CUTS and new immersive shows. Stop by Nina’s Hall to see what I mean:  http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Franks%20Jazz%20Club/68/82/24  There is a lot behind the scenes, such as a custom loyalty program--Frank's Star Points, and so much more.

JB:  I understand you also have a Loyalty Program? Tell me about that, please?

WZ:  This is another exciting innovation, and nothing like it existed in SL before. Today our guests collect Frank's Star points by visiting and engaging in our venues. You can use those Star points toward services, such as our award-winning Chateau d'Elite dining experience, Forevermore Weddings, gift certificates, flowers, and various cute and fun gift items. You use our STAR point vendors like you would use $L in vendors you are used to seeing. But that's just the beginning. The future is exciting as we focus on the total experience and have the capability to build a unique experience for our VIPs and members.   Our guests and members create value for themselves just by engaging with our venues.

JB:  I imagine there must be a lot of details to take care of in managing an operation of this magnitude. How do you prioritize them all?

WZ:  Frank's has been great at creating safe and engaging spaces for folks in Second Life for over 15 years, always honoring our past while innovating and changing continuously. You know you are successful when there are many copy-cat clubs out there. We've never worried about copy-cats. Instead, we focus on what we bring today and how we innovate in the future.

Creating the musical experiences, we have a great lineup of live singers and DJs that call our venues home. Many performers partner with us and work collaboratively on supporting and improving their show in ways that go beyond just their performance. 

Lastly, but equally important, is a safe environment and memorable experience for our guests and members ensured by our fantastic staff. They make all the difference.

To put it simply, our priority in order is VIPs, Members, Guests, Entertainers, and Employees.  

JB:  And what of the future? Any new developments on the horizon. Or additional Venues planned?

WZ:  I'm excited by all the focus on metaverses in the tech world. We are in the initial stages of leveraging the new tech we created last year. We will push that as far as we can, creating unique experiences! We will be producing new types of entertainment (more on that soon)! And a new venue? Hmm... possibly!  

JB:  Is there anything else you would like to share with our SL Enquirer readers?

WZ:  We have some great events coming up! 

NEW!! SpinMasters DJ—A fun competition between DJs. March 27th at 7PM-9PM. Poolside at Frank's Jazz. Smart casual and swimwear are recommended. You should soon see an announcement of our competing DJ's.

Saint Patrick's Weekend—Irish fun from March 17th to March 20th in all venues. It's not just a day for us, but an entire weekend! Dress like a Leprechaun.

Our 15th Anniversary Celebration. June 19th at all of our venues! A fantastic run enjoyed by so many guests, members, staff, and owners!

So, there you have it folks,  Grab your dance partner – or meet one there – and head on over to a Franks Entertainment Group venue for what is truly destined to be a Night to Remember.  Even if you used to go there, but haven’t lately,  give them a look-see.  It will be well worth your time.

Be There!

Aloha!

JB

Franks Jazz http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Franks%20Jazz%20Club/140/128/23

Franks Elite http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Franks%20Place%207/132/49/26

Bogart’s Karaoke Bar & Café http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Franks%20Jazz%20Club/75/186/24

Sphynx Jazz http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Sphynx%20Forest/133/173/60

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/145473596358291/

Twitter https://twitter.com/KittVicy

Web  www.franks-sl.com

Flickr  https://www.flickr.com/groups/3166621@N23/pool/

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