“Gather has allowed us to provide seamless communication across all departments, which keeps everyone on the same page. It facilitates smooth execution for our group diners, which has lead to increased group sales for our restaurant.”

– Keith Ludwick
Director of Operations

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The word “ácenar” means “to dine” in Spanish — and a quality dining experience is exactly what you get when visiting Ácenar in San Antonio, Texas. Opened in 2005, the modern restaurant and bar boast a plethora of Latin dishes inspired by eats from South and Central America and Mexico.

The bold, multi-level restaurant includes a dining room, balcony, and outdoor seating areas — it’s the perfect expansive space to host a successful private events program. Their director of operations, Keith Ludwick, has been with the brand for more than 7 years. When shopping around for an events software platform, Keith knew they needed something that would help streamline their processes, increase communication, and provide security to their customers. For that, he looked to Gather.

To help streamline their growing events business and meet their industry-specific needs, Ácenar turned to Gather to…


Keep Customer Information Secure

Before Gather, Keith says he and his team were using things like Excel spreadsheets, email chains, and printed documents to keep everything event-related together. They would also have guests send printed credit card authorizations, then they’d shred the document once the event was complete. Now, they don’t have to worry about keeping track of physical papers with sensitive data on them, thanks to Gather’s secure, PCI-compliant system that allows for e-signatures and electronic card payments. “Ninety percent of event clients post their credit card securely through the portal,” says Keith. “So now, there’s no need to print it out.”


Increase Efficiency and Communication

With three people working to book events, Ácenar’s process would likely have been chaotic were it not for Gather’s portal system. “All of our staff members can now view email and messaging in-house or off-site,” explains Keith, “so it’s promoted a much-improved efficiency throughout the department.” He adds that this doesn’t just apply to managers, but also to his chefs, kitchen crew, hosts and more. Plus, Keith loves the cloud-based aspect of Gather. “It is fast, effective, and can be updated in real time while conversing with potential guests, positively affecting the booking experience.”


Respond More Quickly to Inquiries

Lastly, Keith says their ability to be more responsive to guests has done wonders for growing their events program. “With all of the communications centralized whether I’m in or out of the office,” he explains, “we can respond to inquiries in a timely fashion.” By adding Gather’s signature lead widget to Ácenar’s website, they can accept booking inquiries 24/7, then respond directly — and quickly — through template messages. An added bonus of their growing events program? They’ve been able to bring in significantly more revenue. “Banquet events drive sales and profits for our entire operation, and increasing our bookings has impacted our bottom line significantly.”


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