“Vanderpump Rules,” a reality show that, in theory, is about hot, broke people trying to make it in Los Angeles, is adversely affecting hot, broke people actually trying to make it in Los Angeles.
The staff at Schwartz & Sandy’s, a bar and eatery co-owned by “Vanderpump Rules” stars Tom Sandoval and Tom Schwartz, has been flooded with busybodies and Bravo fans hoping to glean information or simply watch the flaming wreckage of the show’s recent scandal — the revelation that Sandoval has been cheating on longtime girlfriend Ariana Madix with their co-star Raquel Leviss.
After taking social media by storm in early March, the news is having real-life harm on the young servers and bartenders that work at the establishment, located a stone’s throw from the Scientology Celebrity Centre in Los Angeles’ Franklin Village. The bar is also proximate to show business haunt La Poubelle and improv theater Upright Citizens Brigade.
“People are coming in for a drink and to ask questions,” one employee told Variety anonymously on Thursday at Schwartz & Sandy’s. “They’re not tipping. On one check, a customer wrote ‘I stand with Ariana’ on the tip line instead of actually tipping.”
Another employee bemoaned the fact that foot traffic is high, but sales are not. They’re struggling to make a living, the staffer added. The restaurant saw this coming; on March 4, management posted a lengthy Instagram statement pleading with the public to not do time for Sandoval’s personal drama.
“Our staff, from the waitresses and bartenders to the cooks and dishwashers, all have nothing to do with this unfortunate situation. Please take into consideration that posting negative comments affects more than just the individual you may be upset with,” the post said.
The only party that seems to be benefiting from the bombshell news is Bravo and Peacock, the show’s linear and streaming distributor. On Wednesday, Variety reported that “Vanderpump Rules” had doubled its live ratings from the previous week’s episode. The total haul was 2.2 million viewers across all platforms. The show continues to film around the recent drama, footage that will air on the current 10th season of the franchise.
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