Monster Mini Golf founders sell company to team of top franchisees, including N.J. operator

A select group of Monster Mini Golf franchisees now legally own Monster Entertainment, the corporate franchisor division of Monster Mini Golf.

Monster Mini Golf is one of the fastest-growing family entertainment franchises in the industry, with a reputation for excellence, strong guest experience and retention. After almost 20 years in business, Monster Mini Golf has organically grown to 30 locations across the country and Canada.

Conglomerates that were scooping up and packaging companies and brands together had approached founders Christina and Patrick Vitagliano about selling Monster Mini Golf. But, selling to a group of conventional corporations was not what the Vitaglianos wanted to do with the company where they worked so hard for success.

“The timing for both Patrick and myself was right. We do not have children, and we were ready to pass the torch onto a team that will take Monster Mini Golf to the next level. … We knew our brand deserved new energy and a fresh, driven team,” Christina Vitagliano said.

In April 2022, at a franchisee council meeting, the couple shared what had been happening behind the scenes with outside offers and the need to pass the torch on to a new team. By the end of the meeting, it was evident that the best decision they could make was to sell their brand to the people showing what the brand meant the most to them.

“We’ve come out of the pandemic stronger than we went in, with gross sales up 30% to 40% of pre-pandemic years, and 2023 is continuing to excel. Our success is due to our unconventionality and decades of growth and learning. We’ve overcome hurdles through trial and error, close communication with our franchisees and brand integrity over the corporate bottom line,” Vitagliano added.

The franchise owners/operators come from many industries and backgrounds, with outgoing personalities and a genuine desire to entertain others. For example, Nick Mastrandrea offers extensive experience in mortgage finance, founding an origination company in 1994, which was successfully sold to a major bank in late 2005. He joined the Monster Mini Golf team in 2008, opening his first location in Fairfield, and has since expanded to Paramus and Edison in New Jersey, and Yonkers, New York.

“It is my honor to have the opportunity to become a partner in Monster Entertainment and be a part of a team committed to growing the concept Christina and Pat have developed over the years. It’s been a privilege to grow with them over the last 14 years, and I am excited to work hard to bring Monster Mini Golf to all major areas across the country,” Mastrandrea said.

Monster Mini Golf was founded in 2004 by Vitagliano to provide a unique, fun, affordable indoor family entertainment experience for humans of all ages. The concept was an instant success. In 2005, Vitagliano franchised the brand, her husband joined the company and the Vitaglianos began to build one of the most unconventionally successful franchise brands.

Together, they will continue to retain the two Las Vegas iconic locations, KISS and Twilight Zone Mini Golf.