A martini is a terrible thing to waste.

Michael Cocca.


Feb 17, 2010 24 Comments

I’d like to take this opportunity to write something about a man named Michael Cocca.

Michael Cocca owns Franklin Plaza in Troy, NY.   For those of you who have never heard of Franklin Plaza , it’s an unbelievably beautiful event hall in an old, beautiful bank in Troy, NY.   And if I didn’t want to get married on a farm with a BBQ, I’d get married there.

Franklin Plaza

an historic drawing of Franklin Plaza

I’ve been to a few weddings at Franklin Plaza, and a handful of fundraising events, and every single time the event is off the charts nice.  A few years ago, two friends of mine (Jimmy & Demetra) got married at Franklin Plaza.  Demetra, and I love her to death, is a control freak.  But in the best possible way.   She knows what she likes.  She doesn’t mind paying for it.  But if she wants it, and she paid for it, you better give it to her.  And she has excellent taste, to boot.

Demetra has nothing but the best things to say about her wedding at Franklin Plaza, and I’m sure everyone who was at that wedding would agree with me when I say, it was one of the greatest weddings I’ve ever been to in my life.

Let’s rewind the tape.   Michael Cocca owns Franklin Plaza in Troy, NY.

I met Michael Cocca through another friend of mine, whose name also happens to be Mike.  Mike and I don’t really talk that much anymore because I behaved poorly a few years back and he’s rightfully upset at me.    But one of the many good things that came out of my friendship with Mike, was meeting Michael Cocca.

Michael Cocca is a sweetheart.  He’s what you describe as having “good energy”.  He operates, and I believe still does the cooking for, the colossal machine that is Franklin Plaza.  He should be walking around town acting like he’s the shit, but instead, he’s always happy and sincere and thoughtful.   And talking to him is like talking to someone I’ve known forever.

I respect guys like Michael Cocca who have been in the service business for many years, and they put their blood, sweat and tears into their product, and do it with a smile.

I don’t really know why I’m writing about him.  I guess it’s because someone mentioned his name to me earlier today, and the thought of him made me happy.   He’s just a great guy, and I hope one day I have the level of respect that Michael has from everyone in the community.


  • gerrio
    Feb 17, 2010 at 10:03 am

    What nice things to say! That’s good juju.

  • Dan
    Feb 17, 2010 at 10:46 am

    Wow, Matt, very nice. And a good advertisement for Michael Cocca. He couldn’t have done better if he paid you to say this….

  • TamiDz
    Feb 17, 2010 at 10:47 am

    LOVE Michael too. He’s a good family friend..what a great guy with excellent taste and vision! We also got married at the Plaza…what a night to remember. Michael even brought out a whole spread of sandwiches and desserts at 1:00 a.m. because so many of our guests needed to “sober up” before they left!!! You’ll never be disappointed having an event at either the Plaza or the Terrace (the old Mario’s)!!

  • Tammy P
    Feb 17, 2010 at 10:48 am

    What a nice post! How nice to hear about someone who is good at what they do and doesn’t get arrogant about it.

  • Jake
    Feb 17, 2010 at 10:51 am

    Matt – youre spot on. Michael Cocca (and Michael Fusco) are the absolute best and dont get enough credit for what they do for Troy and the community in general. Ive worked with them for business events and also had my wedding there and to say “they do it right” is an understatement. I dont think the staff there knows the word “no.” On top of it, you couldnt find two people more committed to the community. They support all of the non-profits at both the Plaza and the new Franklin Terrace (next to HVCC) and are genuine about taking care of the community that supports them. Honestly, I cant stay enough nice things about both of them and like you, Im glad that Ive gotten to know them. Cheers!

  • maggie
    Feb 17, 2010 at 11:12 am

    I have known him for years and I have always said that the man is a genius. Everything he does he does well. He is a class act and he deserves all the success in the world because he works hard and he is not all full of himself. Matt, if you are striving to be like him you have picked an excellent business role model.

  • Hopeful
    Feb 17, 2010 at 11:39 am

    How nice you recognize the good in other people. Nice to know they still exist out there.

  • art
    Feb 17, 2010 at 3:05 pm

    “…and I hope one day I have the level of respect that Michael has from everyone in the community.”

    Hence, the pictures of dogs maiking lawn-sausages.
    ha ha

    Right you are, Matt. Mike is a class act. Nice job complimenting one of the good guys in town.

  • Christine
    Feb 17, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    Matt I think you are a well respected member of the community, and I know that everything I have ever heard about you, has been nothing but GREAT!!! I would put you right up there with Michael. :)

  • kiki maguire
    Feb 17, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    Michael Cocca is a righteous dude.

  • Erin
    Feb 17, 2010 at 7:01 pm

    Our wedding was at Franklin Plaza. Michael was so kind and accomodating! He understood my micro-management of every detail. It was a wonderful experience; great staff, beautiful building, wonderful food. My husband and I keep hoping we will be invited to a wedding there, so we can go back and enjoy it as guests !! :)

  • Dana
    Feb 17, 2010 at 7:29 pm

    I went to a wedding there just this past Nov and it was amazing!!! I now totally want my wedding there… ah someday*

  • lynn b
    Feb 17, 2010 at 9:55 pm

    i didn’t realize mike cocoa owned franklin plaza! he is such a nice guy. it makes sense, i’ve had many great experiences there.

  • scottybro
    Feb 18, 2010 at 1:15 am

    Iacocca…… got love em

  • mrswags
    Feb 18, 2010 at 8:08 am

    Went to a wedding and two seperate functions at Franklin Plaza. The wedding was fantastic!!! Really memorable. He does a great job.

  • Kimberly
    Feb 18, 2010 at 8:20 am

    Another one here who had her wedding there over Thanksgiving weekend, 1998. I’m also a control freak who felt at ease having my reception there. They went above a beyond; and family and friends still talk about how amazing our wedding was there! There is not a single thing I wish they had done differently. They even made sure to decorate, per our request, for Christmas in time so we could use those decorations. And we forgot a couple of little things that they went out and bought for us!

  • Mark
    Feb 18, 2010 at 8:48 am

    Michael Cocca is one of the finest human beings in the Capitol District. He runs a great businesss, is fair, honest, humble, hard working, nice, respectful, generous, caring, classy, cvil, considerate………..I could go on and on.

    I worked for him as a waiter catering parties in the mid 80′s (yes, I’m THAT old), and to this day, when we see each other socially, the man still remembers my name and always greets me with a “hi, nice to see you again.”

    I would work for this man again on a moments notice.

    More people should follow in his footsteps.

  • BJ Hart
    Feb 18, 2010 at 10:40 am

    Had my daughter’s wedding reception at Franklin Plaza, so I met “Michael”…great guy & great place to party…also went to a few fund raisers there…fantastic!

  • Deanne Webster
    Feb 18, 2010 at 6:22 pm

    I have a lot of respect and admiration for you Matt.

  • Dave
    Feb 19, 2010 at 10:55 am

    Matt, I have known Michael Cocca for many years and have worked for him as well. He is an awesome guy who is an innocuous person, unpretentious, generous, down to earth and a philanthropist. I am proud to know him as a friend. He is a role model for all and not the kind of person who drives around in a pimped out car or rides a crotch rocket and is full of gimmicks or has the philosophy of ” Look at me” Look at me” or is celebrity driven and focused. He has got what he has got by hard work, discipline and perseverance and is well respected in many local communities. He reaches out and accepts everyone.

  • Pete
    Feb 21, 2010 at 12:38 am

    What did you to do to Mike?

  • MD
    Feb 22, 2010 at 2:50 pm

    Pete, why you so nosey?

  • Dave
    Feb 23, 2010 at 8:38 am

    yeah i’ve wanted to know what happened between matt and mike too…..tell us. matt, maybe u should write an apology on your blog and make up!

  • Suzanne
    Mar 24, 2010 at 10:25 am

    Happened upon this thread – and just have to weigh in — Michael Cocca and Joe Galuski catered my husband’s and my wedding 25 years ago at the Canfield Casino. We were planning the whole thing ourselves and were like deer in the head lights when we sat down at a card table in a deli in Green Island – and 6 months later – ended up with the most incredible event – with Mike and Joe gently pointing us in the right direction and steering us away from any and all pitfalls to come in UNDER BUDGET.
    Fast forward 25 years – my daughter, her fiance and I walk into Franklin Plaza to start thinking about where to hold their wedding. Joe treated her like she was the first bride he had ever met with — not the who knows how many thousandth. We walked out of there — looked at each other cancelled all of the other appointments we had with other venues — and are looking forward to another great wedding.

Leave a Reply