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Turning On the City 

Frischhertz Electric Co. Inc. (4240 Toulouse St., 482-1145; www.frischhertz.com) has been lighting up the New Orleans area for more than a half century and now also focuses on helping residential and business customers stay secure and communicate efficiently.

What started as a two-person, one-truck electrical operation founded by Bernard Frischhertz 52 years ago has grown into a multi-faceted services company with about 250 employees and a fleet of 65 vehicles that operates all over Louisiana and the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

As Frischhertz grew in reputation and expertise over the years it became known as a company that dealt with large contracts and a resume that boasts such clients as Zephyr's Field, the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, the Greater New Orleans Bridge, the Superdome, New Orleans Arena, casinos, hotels and many more. Its services have expanded to include construction, all phases of electrical work, security systems, information and communication technologies, trade show setups, maintenance, fiber optics and even back-up generators for homes and businesses. The company also provides a service team available around the clock. It's not just for mega businesses, however; Frischhertz works on all sizes of projects, both business and residential from changing out a floor of lightbulbs to designing systems before construction begins on a new building.

"A lot of people have (fixed in their minds) the stigma that we're a large company working on tall buildings," says Claus Grassel, manager of Frischhertz Services division, "but we can do everything from one light switch to a whole building. We do small jobs to large businesses."

It's a win-win situation for customers because the company stands behind its work and can give its clients, large and small, back-up services for everything from lighting systems to security to computer networks, says Steven Fisher, manager of the technologies division. "We have 52 years of experience and knowledge behind us, and we adhere to the same stringent rules and policies no matter what the job is," he says.

Because of the integrated services that are offered, customers can enjoy the convenience of "one-stop shopping," and on new buildings, owners can take advantage of a "turn-key solution" in which Frischhertz sets up all the phone lines, electrical needs, computer networking, security systems, fiber optics, cable systems, audio-visual setups, wireless communications and other technological services, including medical installations, and tenants simply have to come in and turn them on. Frischhertz also offers regular maintenance check-ups to keep systems in tip-top shape as well as performing repairs when something goes wrong.

"Our whole concept is that when you use Frischhertz, it's one-stop shopping," Grassel says. "[Customers] have one name to call when they want something, and one name to call if something goes wrong."

Water World
There are few things as inspiring, peaceful and beautiful as cascading waterfalls or landscaped ponds, and now there's a new showroom where homeowners can see the range of possibilities all in one place. Aquascapes by Grandscapes (2000 Athania Pkwy., Metairie, 455-7569) is opening a state-of-the-art retail pond showroom this week that will exhibit ponds, install-it-yourself pond kits, outdoor lighting, garden furniture, decks, waterfalls, vases, birdhouses and lots of other accessories to make your yard an oasis.

The store, located at the corner of W. Napoleon Avenue, will be open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Grand opening festivities include complimentary hors d'oeuvres during "Ladies Night" Thursday, Aug. 21; free T-shirts for the first 100 customers on Friday, Aug. 22; "Build a Pondless Waterfall" seminar (with lunch provided) from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 23; and "Family Day" featuring complimentary hot dogs, chips and drinks on Sunday, Aug. 24. Call 455-7569 for additional details.

"We have it all and do it all," says Charles Avegno of Aquascapes. "We're capable of doing everything from decks to ponds to waterfalls and more." Grandscapes is a full-service landscaping firm that has been in business for 15 years and has created special environments using water gardens, decks, ponds and more.

In October, Aquascapes by Grandscapes will host a night tour of ponds it has installed at private homes, followed by an expanded tour next spring.

Fun and Service
A new organization of professionals from the service and hospitality industry is planning to hold a series of social events that will benefit local charities. Victor Dinh, Midwest sales manager at the Hotel Intercontinental New Orleans, has started the Society of New Orleans Service and Hospitality Industry Professionals (SNOSHIP) to promote discussions about industry issues as well as urging members to perform volunteer and support community groups.

The first SNOSHIP "mix and mingle" is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Aug. 26 at the Red Eye Grill (852 S. Peters St.). The event will benefit the LA-SPCA. The group also sponsors a Web site for service and hospitality industry workers at www.snoship.org. Membership is free.

click to enlarge Part of the management team at Frischhertz Electric - Co. Inc. stands around photos of their projects, - including the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center - pictured in the center. (L-R) President Jim - Frischhertz, his son and Vice President Stephen - Frischhertz, Services Division Manager Claus - Grassel and Technologies Division Manager Steven - Fisher.
  • Part of the management team at Frischhertz Electric Co. Inc. stands around photos of their projects, including the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center pictured in the center. (L-R) President Jim Frischhertz, his son and Vice President Stephen Frischhertz, Services Division Manager Claus Grassel and Technologies Division Manager Steven Fisher.
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