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Nitehawk Cinema
Photograph: Jolie RubenNitehawk Cinema

A super-luxurious movie theater is coming to Manhattan next year

Written by
David Goldberg

Eating a hamburger while watching Star Wars is a fundamental right that should be enjoyed by all New Yorkers, not just residents of Williamsburg, right? That's what dine-in theater franchise iPic is betting on with their first NY franchise, slated to open in June 2016 within the totally renovated Fulton Market Building. With theaters in Los Angeles, Austin, Miami and other cities around the nation, iPic has been gaining a reputation for classy, if not totally creative menus that include options like pizza, truffle fries and cheesecake brûlée.

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The Seaport's iPic will host eight theaters with 43–143 seats each, where moviegoers can order their meal and take it into the show, or opt in for the "premium" experience, which includes plush chairs and wait-service. Cinephiles looking to make a night of it can hit up the Tuck Room, the theater's separate planned on-site restaurant for a sit down dinner before or after their movie. Did we mention there was a bar? 

iPic has plans to expand further into Brooklyn, Queens and upper Manhattan, but they're likely to face off against other full-service theater chains in a competition that can only end well for anyone who enjoys eating or movies (a.k.a. everyone). Austin's Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, arguably the finest "artisinal" theater in the nation, has been thriving in its Yonkers location since 2013 and looks to mark its turf in Downtown Brooklyn's new City Point Center, set to open in 2016. 

This beautiful future of free-drinking at the movies was made possible with the opening of one of NYC's best theaters, Nitehawk Cinema, in 2011. The beloved cult movie house known for its yummy themed meals (their Bridge of Spies menu includes "the Spielburger") joined lobbyists in 2011 to push governor Cuomo into legalizing alcohol in NY movie theaters. Since then, the beer has been flowing, and Nitehawk is looking to expand their custom experience into Manhattan. 

With box office revenue dropping nationwide and more cinemas jacking up the prices of concessions to keep up profits, these delicious new theater models look to be the ideal solution to the "netflix and chill" phenomenon. NYC movie fans should welcome their new hunger-satisfying movie options, but avoid any Hannibal Lecter retrospectives.

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