Nitehawk’s new Prospect Park location (188 Prospect Park West) officially opened to the public yesterday, but I was lucky enough to take an early tour of the venue on Tuesday night. I wasn’t too sure what to expect considering the last time I visited was pre-renovation, and it was a REAL STATE. Some of you may remember the building’s former occupant, aka the infamous Pavilion Theater, which had a reputation for being one of the worst movie houses around; apparently it took DAYS for all the leftover junk to be hauled away, and I can only imagine what an undertaking it must have been to tackle such a massive fixer-upper.
Of course, you’d never know the spot had been the site of such disarray what with how beautifully the renovated facility turned out! It’s massive – there are seven screens total for moviegoers, plus there are two bars (ft. Negronis and Old Fashioneds on tap!) upstairs and downstairs that cater to everybody, including non-ticket holders. So whether or not you want to catch a screening, I’d highly recommend swinging by for a drink.
The food menu, meanwhile, will be similar to what we know and love at the OG Nitehawk (some of the same dishes, and rotating film-themed specials), though management is intentionally keeping things more or less simple while they navigate these early days. (They’ll also be training around 150 staff members to handle food prep and service, which is MIND-BOGGLING.) Film schedules will be strategically staggered, too, so that the kitchen never gets too slammed to deliver top-notch dishes. AND, a cool thing you can do now is Dine ‘N Dash, which is where you can plug in a custom tip when you actually purchase your movie tickets so that there’s no bill drop to distract you during the film!
Of course, if you know me, then you’ll be well aware that I made sure to ask THE most hard-hitting question of all while on the tour with Nitehawk founder Matthew Viragh – “IS IT HAUNTED, THOUGH?!” While Viragh didn’t get into specifics, he did confirm that weird things happen a lot when he’s working late at night, especially in one of the back stairwells. (“I KNEW IT!” I said, because my spookdar is never wrong.)
In terms of the films you’ll be able to catch this weekend, we’ve got The World Before Your Feet, Mary Poppins Returns, The Favourite, Green Book, Aquaman, Shoplifters and Free Solo! Book tickets here! (And if you come across any ghosts, tell ’em I sent ya!)
Photos by Sakeenah Saleem