After the pioneers at Nitehawk Cinema lobbied and won for the right to booze in a cinema, the city has welcomed lots of new ways to get a load on while watching a film. Governor Cuomo even wants to make it the norm for first run movie theaters across the state. And the Upper West Side might have lost that Alamo Drafthouse, but now they've got a much smaller approximation of the real deal with a new film screening and paired cocktail series at the NYLO Hotel on Broadway.
Every Wednesday, the hotel's library transforms into a pop-up arts space, Arthouse @ NYLO, specifically capturing a movie theater setup with their Silent Cinema Series. Couches and cozy chairs are arranged in front of a large screen and attendees are outfitted with fancy headphones to hear the sound from the film. Servers dart in and out handing out boxes of popcorn and fetching themed cocktails to drink during the show.
NYLO invited Gothamist for the evening to watch a screening of Factory Girl, about socialite and muse to Andy Warhol Edie Sedgwick, played by Sienna Miller. (Jimmy Fallon is also randomly in this film.) They're serving two specialty cocktails ($15) inspired by Sedgwick herself and by Warhol's art. One, "Muse," combines gin, orange and grapefruit juices, elderflower liqueur and cinnamon syrup in a "Campbell's" soup can, like Warhol's iconic piece of art. The second, "It Girl," comes as a Coke bottle filled with rum, lime juice, a house-made Averna Cola Cordial and cherry bitters.
The drinks are large and enough to last through the relatively short film (you can order more if you want). The popcorn's nothing to write home about but films start at 8 p.m. so there's time to grab a bite at the hotel's restaurant—which was packed Wednesday evening—or somewhere else nearby. To the point about the packed lobby bar/restaurant: find seats that line up with the brick walls (as opposed to the curtains) if you want to block out the most sound, though after a little while the racket is easy enough to ignore.
screens for only one more Wednesday (3/29) before being replaced by Girl With The Pearl Earring, a 2003 film based on Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer's (Colin Firth) painting of the same name. Subsequent screenings include Frida, 8 1/2, The Monuments Men, and Exit Through The Gift Shop. As you can probably pick up, the films' theme bolsters the hotel's goal to be an "art space and producer of art programming, allowing the public at large to encounter art in an environment that will be inviting to novices and enthusiasts."
Reservations are recommended, and there is a $10 fee for the headphones.
NYLO New York City is located at 2178 Broadway