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creative restaurant builder


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creative restaurant builder


BENCHMARK IS FUELED BY A STRONG, YET SIMPLE BELIEF:   
 DELIVER QUALITY OUTCOMES THAT REMAIN TRUE TO THE BRAND.

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DILIGENCE TO DELIVER


 

 

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DILIGENCE TO DELIVER


 

 

Benchmark Contract Management is a construction management firm that can deliver distinctive hospitality and entertainment facilities throughout the United States and abroad. Michael Harrison leads the firm and drives all projects from initial introduction to grand opening. Michael is a Florida and Virginia Certified General Contractor and has represented the interests of various owners including Darden Restaurants, Palmer Golf Management, Planet Hollywood, Ruth Chris Steak House, Unos Pizzeria & Grill and the Palm Restaurant Group.

Michael managed the construction of many unique destinations such as The Palm Restaurant in Beverly Hills, Lombard's Landing at Universal Studios Orlando and multiple Bahama Breeze restaurants throughout the country. Established in 1998, Benchmark's success is the result of careful integration of existing brand attributes with each project’s unique functional requirements. Close coordination with the Owner and diligent attention-to-detail during all stages of development deliver quality results and the expected ROI.

 

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SERVICES


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SERVICES


AT BENCHMARK, OUR CLIENTS NEVER WONDER IF WE HAVE THEIR BEST INTEREST IN MIND. IN SHORT, WE CARE MORE. WHAT DO OUR QUALITY STANDARDS LOOK LIKE ON THE INSIDE? THE ANSWER IS THREEFOLD: WE'RE HANDS-ON, CLIENT-DRIVEN AND HIGHLY-EXPERIENCED. FROM BUDGETING AND DESIGN TO CONSTRUCTION AND TURN-OVER, OUR GOAL IS TO SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE BY SERVICING ALL OF YOUR DEVELOPMENT NEEDS. 

REAL ESTATE ACQUISITIONS

When considering a new site, Benchmark can help you get the best deal by assessing the property before you have money at risk. Let us do a detailed evaluation of the existing infrastructure to determine feasibility, condition, remaining useful life, capacities of existing MEP systems, accessibility, ADA compliance, egress, existence of any infestation or hazardous materials and estimates of any required remediation and ongoing maintenance. 

We can support your Real Estate Representative or Attorney by reviewing those sections of the Lease that govern Owner & Tenant obligations during the initial build-out. We can draft suggested Landlord & Tenant Work Letters (Lease Exhibits) that will save you tens of thousands of dollars if they are made part of the lease negotiations.

 

PLANNING AND DESIGN

Successful development requires clear parameters be established prior to engaging in design and construction. Based on the Site Assessment and discussions with Stakeholders, Benchmark will summarize the project requirements in an Owner’s Program that will govern all future design and construction decisions. This document can include a detailed Scope of Work, itemized Conceptual Budget, preliminary Project Schedule and Conceptual Plans and/or Renderings. 

Using the approved Owners Program, we will bid out, contract and manage the architectural and engineering team to complete a set of construction documents in a timely manner.

PERMITTING AND CONSTRUCTION

Ninety-plus percent of your Budget will be spent during the Construction Phase which typically is completed in less time that it took to purchase the property and complete the construction documents. To ensure success and avoid the many pitfalls that can occur, let Benchmark represent your interests during this critical period.

We can obtain all permits, retain and direct qualified contractors, purchase/expedite FF&E, secure compliance with construction documents and schedule, maintain the quality of the work, implement and resolve issues of change, satisfy landlord requirements, collect any applicable TI monies, etc.

 

HOSPITALITY • RETAIL • MILLWORK • FURNISHINGS

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CASE STUDIES


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CASE STUDIES


UNO Restaurants

SITUATION > UNO Restaurants LLC, operators and franchisers of the UNO Pizzeria & Grill and Uno Due Go (UDG) brands, had started construction of the prototype UDG restaurant in Boston’s city-center Financial District but encountered difficulties during the early phases of construction. Benchmark was hired to assess the project and address the company’s concerns regarding the completion/turnover date and total project costs.

ACTION > Benchmark reviewed job site conditions, the construction documents, met with Senior UNO Management, the Architect, General Contractor and all Suppliers, before preparing a detailed summary of Projected Final Costs, a new Schedule and suggested revisions to the Construction Management regime. Benchmark was retained as an on-site Owners Representative to implement suggested changes thru job completion, turn-over and punch out.

RESULTS > The project was successfully completed and became one of UNO’s highest grossing, most profitable restaurants. Michael Harrison was further retained to:

  • reorganize UNO’s internal development department and processes;
  • program and execute approved ‘Build Plan’ for 40+ Restaurant Renovations in the Northeast and mid-Atlantic;
  • support Franchisees, Operations/Franchising/Real Estate/Legal Departments and UNO Foods for all development, design and construction related initiatives;
  • organize and maintain comprehensive Facility Maintenance Services including a network of qualified service contractors and equipment suppliers for all operational regions.

Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse

SITUATION > Ruth Hospitality Group, owner/operator of Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse restaurants, wanted to reposition this brand to be more attractive to next-generation diners and woman. Addressing the growing number of business women in management positions was a particular objective. They also needed to reduce initial construction costs to achieve their ROI objectives.

ACTION > Tasked with leading the design effort, Michael Harrison supported the company wide under-taking by developing new interior design standards, new space-efficient floor plans and revised the type of structure used on free-standing structures. Working closely with Senior Operators to understand guest preferences and needs, Michael created a Design Standards Manual that provided architects, interior designers, kitchen designers and draftsman clear direction on how to render the RCSH concept. 

RESULTS > Subsequently Michael evaluated new sites for the Real Estate Team to determine feasibility/yield and estimated development/construction costs for use in ROI modeling. He assembled and directed various design teams to produce and permit construction documents that delivered expected results at 11 new restaurants. He also applied the new interior design concepts to the renovation of 18 existing renovations.


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PROJECTS


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PROJECTS


Palm Restaurant Group

  • Atlanta, GA – Interior renovation and exterior signage
  • Beverly Hills, CA – New free standing restaurant
  • Denver, CO – Interior renovation and exterior signage
  • Las Vegas, NV – Plans Preparation & Permit Acquisition for Interior renovations
  • Palm One (NYC) – Interior renovations, structural repairs
  • Palm Two (NYC) – Interior renovations
  • Tribeca (NYC) – New exterior signage
  • Tysons Corner, VA – PDR & misc. interior renovations, zoning approval and planning for building addition
  • Boca Raton, Chicago, Philadelphia – Conceptual Planning & Budgets

UNO Restaurants LLC

  • Uno Chicago Grill – Renovations @ 40+ Locations in the Northeast and mid-Atlantic
  • Uno Due Go – New in-line fast casual concept in the Boston Financial District

Ruth’s Hospitality Group

1. Ruth’s Chris Steak House – Site Assessment, Conceptual Estimating (Budgets), Planning & Permits

  • Bonita Springs, FL - New in-line restaurant
  • Coral Gables, FL - Interior renovations
  • Chicago - Interior renovations
  • Dedham, MA - New in-line restaurant (project cancelled after planning complete)
  • Fresno, CA - New in-line restaurant 
  • Ft. Lauderdale - Interior renovations
  • Ft. Worth, TX - New restaurant in the historic ‘JFK’ Hilton Hotel
  • Jacksonville, FL - Interior renovations
  • Knoxville, TN – Conversion of existing free-standing restaurant on the Tennessee River
  • Memphis, TN - Interior renovations
  • New Orleans, LA - New restaurant in the historic Harrah’s Hotel
  • Newport Beach, CA – Interior Renovations 
  • New York (Manhattan) - Interior renovations
  • Northbrook (Chicago), IL - Interior renovations
  • Palm Desert, CA – Interior Renovations
  • Parsippany, NJ - Interior renovations
  • Ponte Vedra, FL - Interior renovations
  • Princeton, NJ - New free standing restaurant at Forrestal Village
  • Providence, RI - New restaurant fronting the Woonasquatucket River (water fire)
  • Reno, NV - New in-line restaurant (project cancelled after planning complete)
  • Santa Barbara, CA - New in-line restaurant 
  • South Barrington, IL - New free standing restaurant
  • Tampa, FL - Interior renovations
  • Troy, MI - Interior renovations
  • Tyson’s Corner, VA - New in-line restaurant
  • Walnut Creek, CA – Interior Renovations
  • Weehawken - Interior renovations
  • West Palm Beach, FL - New in-line restaurant at CityPlace Center                                                                                                                   

2. Mitchell’s Fish Market – assessed condition of all locations and developed conceptual CAPEX improvement budgets prior to acquisition of this brand. 

Darden Restaurants – Bahama Breeze: New restaurants. Site Assessments, Conceptual Estimating (Budgets), Planning, Permits and Construction.

  • Atlanta (Duluth), GA
  • Atlanta (Alpharetta), GA
  • Austin, TX
  • Birmingham, AL
  • Dallas, TX 
  • Ft Myers, FL
  • Livonia, MI
  • Louisville, KY
  • Memphis, TN
  • Miami (Kendall), FL
  • Pembroke Pines, FL
  • Phoenix (Chandler), AZ
  • Orlando (Lake Buena Vista), FL
  • Raleigh, NC
  • Troy, MI
  • St Louis (Chesterfield), MO

Arnold Palmer Golf Management

  • Memphis National Golf Club , Collier, TN - Clubhouse Renovations, 54 to 36 hole conversion, new driving range
  • Oronoque Country Club, Stratford, CT - Clubhouse Renovations, misc. course improvements
  • Penderbrook Golf Club, Fairfax VA - Clubhouse Renovations, misc. course improvements
  • Spencer T. Olin Golf Course, Alton (St. Louis), IL
  • Crofton Country Club, Crofton, MD - Clubhouse Renovations, misc. course improvements
  • San Francisco, CA - New Clubhouse at the Presidio Golf Course

Official All Star Café: New restaurants. Site Assessments, Conceptual Estimating (Budgets), Planning, Permits and Construction.

  • Atlantic City, NJ - New free standing restaurant on the Trump Taj Mahal Casio property
  • Cancun, MX – Beachfront conversion of existing restaurant
  • Las Vegas, NV - New interior build-out; substantial exterior sign package
  • Orlando, FL (Disney - ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex) - New in-line restaurant
  • New York (Times Square), NY - New interior build-out; substantial exterior sign package

Planet Hollywood: New restaurants. Site Assessments, Conceptual Estimating (Budgets), Planning, Permits and Construction.

  • Aspen, CO
  • Chicago, IL
  • Dallas, TX
  • Orlando (Downtown Disney), FL
  • Phoenix, AZ
  • Lake Tahoe, CA
  • Las Vegas, NV
  • Minneapolis (Mall of America), MO
  • Maui, HI
  • Miami, FL
  • New York, NY
  • Reno, NV
  • Washington D.C.

Hard Rock Café (New Restaurants): New restaurants. Estimating, Permits and Construction.

  • Atlanta 
  • Berlin
  • Miami
  • Orlando (Universal Studios), FL
  • Paris
  • San Juan
  • St. Thomas

Other Projects: Estimating and Construction.

  • Black-Eyed Pea, Longwood, FL - New free-standing restaurant 
  • Black-Eyed Pea, Kissimmee, FL - New free-standing restaurant
  • Caruso's Palace, Orlando, FL - New free-standing restaurant
  • La Bamba Mexican Restaurant, Orlando, FL - Interior build-out at Universal Studios
  • Lombard's Landing, Orlando, FL – New free standing restaurant including construction of surrounding San Francisco Wharf theming at Universal Studios
  • Video Experience, Orlando, FL - Interior build-out of guest attraction at Universal Studios
  • Rank Leisure/Hard Rock Cafe Corporate Offices, Orlando, FL
  • McCormick Residence & Grounds, Windermere, FL - 25,000 SF Private Estate
  • Parc Corniche Phases I & II, Orlando, FL – Time share hotel and golf course

Interior Millwork Packages: Estimating, Shop drawings, Fabrication and Installation.

  • Fogo de Chao – Chicago, IL
  • Caxambas – Marco Island, FL
  • ESPN Zone – Atlanta, GA
  • ESPN Zone – Denver, CO
  • Emeril’s Tchoup Chop – Orlando (Universal Studios), FL
  • Fox Sports Grill – Irvine, TX
  • Fox Sports Grill – Phoenix, AZ
  • Fox Sports Grill – Seattle, WA
  • Fiddler’s Creek (Country Club & Shop) – Marco Island
  • McCormick’s & Schmick’s – Orlando, FL
  • Bahama Breeze – Las Vegas, NV
  • Bahama Breeze – Lonetree, CO
  • Portofino Bay Hotel (VIP Dining) – Universal Studios
  • Anaelle & Hugo – Orlando, FL