Nightclubs right now are a thing of the past in the age of COVID-19, however, one Philly nighttime hotspot has decided to transform it’s venue and re-imagine the experience so diners will get dinner and a show until things get back to “normal.”
FCM Hospitality recently announced the new concept for the popular Center City club, Concourse. Typically, the dance spot is known for its whimsical atmosphere complete with a slide and ball pit, but starting this week the venue will now hold an all-new way to enjoy some Philly favorites with a slew of surprises.
“The nightclub business is not coming back until we have a vaccine and that vaccine has been delivered to a substantial portion of the population of Philadelphia,” said owner Avram Hornik in a statment. “Facing this fact, our team at FCM Hospitality have reimagined how to use one of our largest spaces for a non-nightclub use in a way that is safe for both patrons and staff, and that is in compliance with all government guidelines.”
While Concourse has been closed to the public due to COVID-19, Hornik and his team have been working on a new way to re-imagine the space that so many flocked to for a good time before the pandemic hit. One of the new additions is an ice room—a concept the FCM Hospitality team was going to explore earlier this year with the debut a brand-new 1,000 square feet ice bar. However, for obvious reasons, circumstances changed but Philadelphians will still be able to get a glimpse at the new cool setting.
“Philadelphia has been able to enjoy outdoor dining and activities all Spring and Summer but it will soon be dark and cold outside,” continued Hornik in his statement. “People will need safe places to go and activities to do this winter or, as we are social creatures, people will gather together in unsafe ways. While the infection rate in Philadelphia remains low, having indoor door dining is safer than the alternative – and it is important we work together as a community to come up with options that are safe and smart.”
According to the release, for the reopening of Concourse, patrons will socially distance and move through three rooms of the newly reimagined 15,000 square foot space. Each patron and their guest ( up to four people can arrive together) will be seated at tables in three rooms that are at least six feet apart. Upon entry, patrons will experience their first course and pairing in a newly appointed mezzanine where seated patrons are front and center of a brand new art room.Next, patrons will chill out in Philadelphia’s only ice room that is a 1,000 square feet celebration of the very best of Philadelphia. Finally, patrons will enter the largest room that will throw things back to the 90s with an all new laser and light show.
“While keeping our doors shut for the next six to twelve months would have been easier, we have an important role in the community – to provide the opportunity for some levity and safe fun during the most mentally challenging of years,” added Hornik in the release. “If we can do our job safely, we have an obligation to our patrons, employees, disk jockeys, and vendors to be opened.”
The ice room is kept at a cool -5 C and features pieces from renowned ice sculpture Peter Slavin. Guests will also have the chance to walk through the infinity room giving “a nostalgic nod to everyone’s favorite fun house with an adult twist.” Cocktail-wise patrons can check out cocktails on fire or stick with the ice theme with all-new cocktails that add to the sensory experience. On the menu, diners can find pretzels, cheesesteaks and of butterscotch krimpets to end the experience on a sweet note.
“We would not consider opening up concourse unless we could do it safely,” said Hornik. “After reading and analyzing the guidelines set up by the City of Philadelphia and the State of Pennsylvania we developed this dining concept that would allow our guests to have fun while remaining safe. The nightlife and entertainment sector of the economy has been hardest hit by the corona shut-down and will be one of the last to return. We support the governor and the mayor for making these hard choices to protect us all and think the sacrifice of the temporary closing of nightlife is required for the health and safety of all of us. After living with this virus for six months, we all have a better understanding of what is safe and how to operate under the new normal.”
Pre-paid tickets for Concourse includes all food and drinks and come out to be $32.50 plus tax and 18% gratuity. For more about Concourse Dance Bar and the new dining concept, follow Concourse on social media at @ConcourseDanceBar. For tickets and safety protocols, visit concoursedancebar.com