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  #31  
Old 10-15-2014, 06:45 PM
DubaiSis DubaiSis is offline
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Cool. I'll be interested to learn more. When you ARE ready to move forward, of course let us know so we can support it. And you never know when I have clients needing an activity somewhere.
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  #32  
Old 10-16-2014, 01:40 AM
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AZTheta AZTheta is offline
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My only question is probably an obvious one: is there a market or demand for this (dinner theatre/restaurant) in your area? These are not popular here in AZ and don't do well. I imagine you're investigating this thoroughly! Big venture.
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  #33  
Old 10-16-2014, 04:55 AM
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LAblondeGPhi LAblondeGPhi is offline
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I just read this thread, and I wanted to say that I'm a big fan of this general type of idea - though the type of act and price point would really sway my actual willingness to attend. I lament all the time that there aren't more "dinner and a something" places, though I think my favorite is dinner and second-run movie.

I like comedy clubs, but the comedy can be hit-or-miss, and they typically have a certain drink minimum without 'real' dinner options. I've been to a murder mystery dinner that we paid a decent amount for (beyond a normal dinner out), and the murder mystery was pretty lame with pretty standard hotel food. I walked away not wanting to recommend it to anyone.

There's a great place in the DC metro area called the Arlington Cinema and Drafthouse that has converted an old movie theater into a comedy-slash-second run theater space. They've taken out maybe every other row of theater seats, and spread out the seats to make room for small cocktail tables at each seat. They serve alcohol and bar-type food. To my mind, their only downfall is that they aren't near a metro station and aren't terribly convenient to cab to from DC proper, but they have $2 second-run movies, (used to have) great wine nights, and good headliner comedians.
http://arlingtondrafthouse.com/drafthouse/

I do have a suggestion: is there any way to do a Minimal Viable Product (MVP) test-run? Can you test the concept and ability to make money with the very minimum investment? I'm thinking renting out a restaurant for a short-term run, or setting up a pop-up location. Even a hotel ballroom could be a good location to test the act, and you'd be able to serve food and alcohol through the hotel's licenses.

Other suggestions: I bet you'd need many different kinds of activities throughout the week - comedy, magic, movies, live music, etc. If you stick to one kind of act, I'm concerned that you'd really quickly run through your target audience before they'd want to come back.

Also, the food needs to be at least above average, but preferably pretty good. I would imagine you'd need a small menu (maybe of tapas or gastro-pub items) of items that could be cooked quickly and in large batches if you plan to get food out to everyone at about the same time.

Good luck! I can't wait to hear more.

Oops - had more suggestions! Maximizing the events throughout the week: a Saturday and Sunday morning ladies movie and champagne brunch; weekday mommy-and-me movies, etc.
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Last edited by LAblondeGPhi; 10-16-2014 at 05:00 AM.
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  #34  
Old 10-16-2014, 10:43 AM
AlphaFrog AlphaFrog is offline
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The model I'm working on is a vaudeville style, where we might have a band one night, comedy another night, a magician another night, and then maybe a full scale theatre production that runs for two weeks. Each performance would be individually contracted. They would set their own entrance price and get a percentage (80-90%, depending - less if we provide technical crew). Entrance charge would begin an hour and a half before show time. From lunch until then, we'd serve a fairly typical meal with the twist that we would require all of our waitstaff to be entertainers of some kind. They would open service with a small sleight of hand trick (my magician has volunteered to teach them) and it would be their job to not only serve, but entertain through the meal. Because of this, we plan to pay 50-100% more than standard servers wages. My goal would to have all of the servers performer's hearts feel fulfilled (since so many performers end up waiting tables). I want jobs at my restaurant to be coveted and held instead of the typical transient waitstaff.

Our menu would focus two places: appetizer heavy FRESH MADE bar food that can be put out quickly, and unique healthy focused entrees that you don't generally find: Ratatouille (cheese optional), Veggie "pasta" with several sauce options, Stuffed Squash, and several salads.

Don't know if this will show up, but this is the general feel we want: https://fbcdn-sphotos-c-a.akamaihd.n...51836863_o.jpg
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