A San Ramon couple wants to give people a chance to equip themselves with liquid courage and try to be artists for a few hours. This phenomenon, called "paint and sip," represents an opportunity for individuals, groups of friends, or corporate clients to drink wine and paint, under the guidance of professional artists. Nish and Payal Gokli are in the process of opening a Bottle and Bottega franchise in the Tri Valley area. Started in 2009, Bottle and Bottega has 15 US franchises, including the latest, the Goklis'.
It was on a "date night" at a nearby art and wine studio that the couple got the idea to go into this business, says Nish, who formerly worked for PayPal, eBay, and IBM. The couple has traveled extensively and acquired arts and crafts in their travels, many of which are displayed in their San Ramon home.
"Our 'pop-up' parties are unlike anything the Bay Area has ever seen!" Nish asserts. "We are bringing our art and wine parties to the hottest nightlife venues in the local area with paint supplies, a professional artist, music, and more."
The couple plans to begin with a mobile phase in which they will partner with community businesses. "My expectation is that the partnership with venue locations will help them grow by bringing in new customers, while the guests enjoy a Bottle and Bottega art party," notes Nish.
In parallel, the couple plans to work with a commercial broker to select the ideal location for the Bottle and Bottega East Bay Studio. "The events will be led by trained art instructors who will provide step-by-step instruction on bringing out the artist in everyone," Nish explains. "Whether it is a girl's night out, a bachelorette party, a birthday party, a baby shower, or a corporate team-building event, we are excited to ensure that the art party is a memorable experience for the guests."
Instructor may not be quite the right designation, because B&B will not be an art school per se. The focus is more on camaraderie; socializing; or team-building, in the case of corporate clients. Painting participants will end up creating a canvas they can take home. Artists assisting clients should be able to tailor their assistance to respective skill levels of participants.
Incorporated into English from Italian, where it means "artist's studio or shop," a bottega is a "studio or workshop of a major artist in which other artists may participate in the execution of the projects or commissions of the major artist." Like its Spanish cousin, bodega, the word is derived from Latin apotheca, warehouse.
Nish, a member of the San Ramon Valley Rotary Club, notes that throughout his corporate career, he has been a proponent of giving back to the community by holding team-building events that focused on cleaning up parks, helping in soup kitchens, and participating in other social causes. "Both Payal and I are committed to partnering with businesses in the community and supporting fund-raising events, which are both an integral part of the culture of the brand."
Bottle and Bottega's promotional materials urge potential clients not to be afraid to take the plunge of the brush into paint: "It's way better than your kindergarten art class! (This time there's wine.)"
For information about the Goklis' B&B franchise and bookings, call 925-452-6897, e-mail [email protected], or click http://bottleandbottega.com/eastbay