May 30, 2018
Four couples left in the lurch last month after the abrupt closure of a Fishtown wedding venue will get their deposits back, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced Wednesday.
Skybox Event Center, a popular venue at 2424 E. York St., closed suddenly in April when it was issued a cease-operations order by the city of Philadelphia. The venue had been operating with an expired Special Assembly and Occupancy License, which is required for gathering spaces with dancing and more than 50 people.
City officials citied the venue in 2017, but Skybox continued to operate illegally and accept deposits from soon-to-be wed couples.
“Skybox accepted deposits and reservations from these Pennsylvania consumers – even though the business was operating illegally,” said Shapiro. “When the venue was shut down, couples lost their deposit and were left scrambling to find a new wedding location."
The Attorney General's Bureau of Consumer Protection secured a $20,250 settlement that will ensure all of the couples receive their deposits back in full. Christos Aivazoglou, also known as Chris Voz, entered into the settlement on behalf of Skybox Events and CCP Catering and Hospitality, LLC.
Matthew Chin and his future bride, Dana Pidliskey, had a November date booked at Skybox when they learned of the venue's demise.
“My fiancé and I were excited about having our wedding at Skybox after we paid them a $3,000 deposit,” said Chin. “We were shocked when it unexpectedly closed — without a single word from the venue owner, Chris Voz. The closure forced us to spend more than what we budgeted for on another venue that we were forced to book at the last minute."
As part of the settlement, Voz and his company will be required to repay other eligible consumers who file complaints within a 30-day period. A $2,500 investigation cost must also be paid to the state.
Any other affected Pennsylvania consumers are asked to contact the Bureau of Consumer Protection at 800-441-2555 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to file a complaint. They must do so by June 28 to be eligible for restitution.