News about the official closing of iconic comedy club Carolines on Broadway really saddened New Yorkers but we’re pretty excited about recent developments regarding the space. According to the New York Post, the destination will now be the home of Spin NYC Times Square, the ping-pong social club that was co-founded by actress Susan Sarandon and already operates a 14,000-square-foot outpost in the Flatiron.
To be clear, the outlet says that the deal isn’t quite official yet, but it’s safe to assume that the pretty successful franchise, which boasts locations across seven other cities, will take over the location.
As long-time New Yorkers may remember, Caroline Hirsch opened Carolines in Soho as a cabaret destination back in 1981. In 1987, she moved the business to the South Street Seaport—an area that did not enjoy as much traffic and attention as it does today.
A few years later, in 1992, Hirsch relocated to Times Square, a decision that she discussed in the venue’s Instagram post, where she announced the shuttering of the space. “Many New Yorkers and businesses had written off Times Square and NYC overall due to record-high crime and a lack of proactive government solutions,” she wrote. “People thought we were crazy to invest in Times Square, only later to say that we were ahead of the curve when global brands like Disney, Nasdaq and national retailers and businesses came to the neighborhood.”
Clearly, Hirsch knew what she was doing. In addition to rapidly becoming a go-to comedy club among locals and tourists alike, the space became the home of the annual New York Comedy Festival (NYCF), founded by the owner in 2004 and still featuring over 200 comedians performing at over 100 shows across all five boroughs during a full week each year.
Although clearly a different sort of business, we predict Spin will find a welcoming audience in the area. As history has it, Sarandon decided to invest in the project after attending a table tennis party by actor Franck Raharinosy at the Flatiron location of the club in 2009—so it’s clearly a fun place to spend an afternoon or night in.
Ex-Brit turned Manhattan resident since 2008.