Jon Spadafora and Steve Kennedy

Partners, Element Hospitality
Photo by Anthony Mair

Photo by Anthony Mair

Jon Spadafora and Steve Kennedy, two longtime nightlife veterans, are well aware of what they have with Chateau Nightclub in Paris Las Vegas: They have the “Everyman’s club,” one free of high bottle service minimums and pretentiousness.

“One thing that we realized early on was that nightlife was evolving for the one-percenters,” Spadafora says, “which is great—those parties are a lot of fun to go to, and I think most people will strive to be that one-percenter at some point in time. But the reality is that there’s a tremendous amount of [regular] people who come to Vegas.”

Granted, Chateau is happy to have those big spenders, but rather than focusing on the deep pockets, the two-headed operating team went after a different market. “And we’ve had a lot of success opening our doors to opportunities that other clubs might not,” Kennedy says.

Spadafora, whose work centers more around the club’s operations, adds, “The nightlife experience was becoming so expensive and so focused on that $10,000 customer that there was an opportunity to replicate that experience with the customer who maybe didn’t have that sort of a wallet.”

In realizing this, the two conveyed their vision to the staff. “We thought it was important to let our staff in on the decision-making process,” Spadafora says. “We knew that if we were going to make an impact on the customers, the most efficient way to do that was through great service, and that’s more than how the club looks or what’s there. Hopefully the atmosphere with our staff spills over.”

Kennedy, the club’s marketing wiz, adds, “We teach management styles. We treat it like a business, and we treat our staff like employees and respect them, and I think we get the respect back.”

2014 Nightlife Awards