Sneak Peek Inside the New Slipper Room on Orchard
On June 16, 2010, the burlesque hotspot Slipper Room closed its doors for the last time as a one-story performance venue at 167 Orchard. Heavy-duty demolition equipment arrived shortly thereafter, and their eleven-year home was quickly razed and rebuilt. Well, quick in the sense that construction actually adhered to to the schedule. The predicted two years in exile are all but complete as the new second-floor facility is poised to reopen in the brand new building very soon.
The proverbial brains behind the Lower East Side “palace of variety,” James Habacker, was most kind in letting us preview the 3,000 square-foot space before launch. Simply put, the design absolutely blows away the old room. Instead of a dank cavernous space, version 2.0 is a legit proscenium theatre channeling a straight-up Victorian vibe. High tin ceilings, mezzanine level, and “arched” stage (wood salvaged from a Detroit school) are character contributions. Tinkletown is much bigger too – five bathrooms on the mezzanine, up from three. There’s definitely a noticeable energy inside even though its not completely ready yet.
The ultimate goal is still to be a low-key performance space with the same style of programming. But more of it. A larger stage allows for a wider range of entertainment. Early evening will showcase events like readings and music, while structured variety shows will continue to rule the late night (post-10 pm).
And the beaurecratic bullshit? Liquor license is in place. Now it’s just a matter of finalizing the necessary paperwork with the DOB. Assuming everything runs according to plan, the revamped Slipper Room will be ready to shake its tassels by early June. Mark the calendars, if you will. Oh, and lastly, a Slipper Room neon is also in the works.
As for the ground level, plans are still underway for Rob Shamlian’s new raw bar concept. However, judging by the conspicuous clusterfuck in this space, it’ll definitely be months before his restaurant launches.