Sunshine Lounge to Marry Booze and Movies on the Lower East Side

Posted on: October 3rd, 2012 at 6:09 am by

Looks like the proverbial dinner and a movie is taking on a whole new meaning at the three-story Sunshine Cinema on East Houston. The Sunshine Lounge, as it’s called, aims to bring booze, movies, and culinary edibles under one roof. To that end, company brass is billing this as a restaurant and seeking full on-premise liquor privileges later this month. It truly is an arms race for licenses in these parts…

Poring over documents recently delivered to Community Board 3, this is quite an ambitious application. First and foremost is the proposal for bars on the cellar level up to the second floor, for a total of three watering stations. Each will serve both food and beverage. Cafe nooks will be carved on each level of the multiplex, and carry thirty tables of seating for eighty-two peeps.

What may worry moviegoers, however, is the apparent placement of airplane-style “dining tablets” at all auditorium seats in these re-branded “dinner theaters.” Sounds like that could be a recipe for rowdiness, noise, and frequent bathroom visits during screenings. Especially when liquor is a factor. It’s bad enough with just cell phones blowing up all the time. Seriously, remember the “douchegirl”?

Landmark Theatres will appear before CB3 on October 15 to secure blessings.  How do you feel about having such amenities in a movie theater? Do you think it would disrupt your viewing experience?

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  • jo

    SO excited!! as a texas transplant spoiled by the alamo drafthouse franchise i can tell you it’s certainly possible to pull off food & booze service during a movie with minimal interruption. they know how to do it right and keep the focus on the film, including banning “douchegirls” as necessary – check out their ‘don’t talk’ promo. it’s amazing: nitehawk’s doing a pretty solid job but the theaters are tiny so it can’t help but be a little disruptive. and that new alamo is going to be way up on the upper west. so, sunshine’s my spot. only fear is how long the construction will take and what that means for my near-future movie going. any timing projections?

  • scoboco

    Horrible idea, will ruin the best theater in town.

  • Mayra

    i think it’ll be great, im excited about the idea i know amc offers it certain locations with their dine in theatres

  • Couth

    Dear Landmark Sunshine,

    Please do not do this. It will be an
    unbearably obnoxious, and disruptive atmosphere, which will transform
    the venue into an extremely uncomfortable space and make enjoying a film
    in your theater impossible. People should be able to watch a film
    without the omnipresent, gob-produced din and physical activity that
    accompanies food and drink being shoved down fellow patron’s maws, and
    the inevitable foot traffic to the restroom. Again, please do not befoul
    the perfectly pleasant atmosphere of your theater with this noxious

    Movie theaters are for watching movies Do not transform yours into a Roman vomitorium.*

    Best Regards,

    *I realize such receptacles did not actually exist, but I nevertheless do not wish to see the Landmark Sunshine transformed into one.

  • LES Neighbor

    Yes, PLEASE approve, this is great news! I love the Sunshine, particularly now that they have the zip card deal. I only went to the Alamo once in texas a couple years ago but it was a great experience, and the time I was there I thought to myself “the sunshine would be perfect for this.” True story! It was very casual, not loud nor obnoxious, and we really enjoyed it. I think with a lot of people eating meals it helps induce food comas because theater noise was not a problem at all.

  • Shawn Chittle

    Agree with Couth!

    Don’t do this Sunshine! You’re catering to people who go OUT but not to people who go OUT TO SEE MOVIES.

    Is it so freaking hard to enjoy a film for 2 hours, then go for a drink after and talk about it? Oh no, let’s drink/talk DURING the movie! YES!

    My god, man.