Top of the Tower: A Look at One Center City Wedding Venue Adjusting to the Papal Visit

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It is common knowledge that September is one of the most popular months for weddings, if not the most popular month. However, with Pope Francis arriving in Philadelphia in less than a week, many local wedding venues have been forced to find alternate ways of making ends meet. PHL17’s Lauren Berman sat down with one center city business adjusting to the historic event.

Top of the Tower, located on the 50th and 51st floors of Three Logan Square frequently hosts brunches, formal events, and most importantly, weddings. However, Mickey Rowley, proprietor of Top of the Tower, knew that the Pope's visit would mean one thing: no weddings.

"Weddings are a big part of our business," Rowley explains. "There’s only 52 Saturdays in a year so we were kind of regretting that we were losing that opportunity."

According to Rowley, the business typically hosts two to three weddings per weekend, with an estimated income of $25,000 to $30,000 per event.

"Losing that is probably five or six percent of our wedding year so to speak," says Rowley. "But we think we’re probably going to beat that with the events we're hosting that weekend.”

The venue is taking advance of it's prime location right outside the Francis Festival Grounds on the Ben Franklin Parkway. It will be hosting four sky-high events on September 26th and 27th.

“We’re going to be in the center of the action," says Rowley. "We have our brunch, Skybrunch, on both Saturday and Sunday, and on Saturday night during the concert we’ll be having a sky buffet. And on Sunday night we’ll be having a similar event only watching the mass.”

According to the business's calculations, these events could double the profits it could make on a normal wedding weekend. Regardless, the event will have high costs. Due to the road closures and restrictions during the papal visit, the venue is renting large refrigerators, getting it's deliveries as early as Wednesday and housing it's employees in the building over the weekend.

"We’ve gotten an arrangement with the health club that’s in the building for access to showers and stuff," says Rowley. "We are bringing in beds, and all of our employees are planning on sleeping here. So there is stuff we are doing that is unusual and a little bit costly."

However, the hard work is paying off. According to Rowley, Top of the Tower's events are filling up fast.

By: Lauren Berman/PHL17

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