, proprietor and founder of Driftwood Restaurants
and Catering, says he
has already contracted out three of his
spaces - Washington Place Bistro & Inn in Little Italy, Hodge's on East Sixth Street downtown and Cibreo Italian Kitchen and its adjacent 165-seat facility Cibreo Privato in Playhouse Square - for the week of the convention.
"We are very happy about that, to have that behind us and to start the preparation side of it," says Kuhn
, who adds that his
group worked with contacts in Washington, D.C., to get a jump on renting out the space.
"With all the challenges that come along with the convention, whether it's parking or security or the challenges to get a delivery truck to the store, when you have a contract you are at peace knowing that you are going to get a contracted dollar amount that you are comfortable with."
On the catering side of his
business - the fastest-growing area of Driftwood's culinary empire - Kuhn
group continues to meet with representatives and delegates on what their needs will be.
"Catering is sort of the last piece of the puzzle for us to figure out," he
catered events for the RNC
selection committee when they came to town last summer.
"[I expect] to do a lot of that at Playhouse Square when the RNC
comes back next July," Kuhn
"Just as [anyone else] who lives in Cleveland, I am really thrilled that the convention is coming to Cleveland.
Because if we do this well, we can be a convention city for years to come.
It's very important for us as a city."
says there are people on the ground now trying to secure every possible place in Cleveland - both for their own use for events as well as for others' use as third-party promoters.
"A lot of [the latter] are D.C.-driven or convention-driven," he