“We’re taking the most beautiful staircase in the world up to the mezzanine,” our Marquee Club guide tells a group of 10 or so of us media folks who’ve gathered for a sneak preview of the Fox Theatre‘s snazzy new premium lounge. “Most beautiful in the world” might be a hotly contested title, but the sleek blue tile and marble staircase tucked in the very back of the main lobby is certainly photo-worthy. Climb it all the way to the top and you’ll end up at the club’s rooftop lounge, an indoor/outdoor space that even gives you the opportunity to snag a photo of the Fox’s iconic lit sign. (It requires some careful footing and holding your phone out over the railing above Peachtree Street, however, so best to snap that photo before you hit the bar.) It’s also the first time in 65 years the roof has been open to guests; the space, outfitted with coral and white-striped patio sofas and a yellow and pink-tiled bar, used to house HVAC equipment.
Open to Fox Theatre members 90 minutes before and during shows (and after certain shows), the 10,000-square-foot Marquee Club holds 400 people and boasts five bars, complimentary passed and stationed hors d’oeurves and non-alcoholic drinks, private restrooms, and a private entry. Want a comfy space to sip a cocktail during intermission? You’ll be able to order your drink in advance and have it ready when you arrive. (Corporate and premium partnership manager Laura Zimbrick says this system is currently in the “beta phase.”) During certain performances, TV’s in the lounge will live-stream what’s on stage.
Zimbrick says the ground level space has always been used for retail—it was a dress shop and a florist in past lives. Most recently, the retail space housed the Churchill Grounds jazz cafe, which closed in 2016.
Beyond all the perks, the biggest asset of the space is its decor. From the hand-blown glass chandelier to the colorful tiles lining the bar to the black marble tabletops, the Marquee Club is an Instagrammer’s dream. Atlanta design firm Lord Aeck Sargent is responsible for the look, meant to match the Fox’s overall aesthetic. Another local influence: Tucker-based Corn Upholstery Company, which created much of seating.
“We had so many different [inspirations] inside the theater: Moorish, Mediterranean, Moroccan, Turkish, art deco. There were so many different styles that it was actually a little bit difficult for [Lord Aeck Sargent] to hone in on the best pieces of the Fox to highlight,” Zimbrick says. “[Overall], a Moorish-Mediterranean feel is where they landed, but the leather wall on the main level has a very Turkish influence as well.”
Much of the food served during the media preview fit the Mediterranean theme—red pepper hummus and naan, baba ghanoush, Moroccan pickled and marinated grilled vegetables, baklava. A carving station offered braised beef, basmati rice, and roasted zucchini. On the cocktail list for the preview: a Spicy Mule with Absolut Elyx vodka, lime juice, 18.21 ginger beer, and jalapeno, and cilantro; an Atlanta Old Fashioned with ASW Fiddler Bourbon and 18.21 Barrel-Aged Old Fashioned Mix, and a Spring Blossom with Aviation gin, elderflower liqueur, prosecco, and lemon juice.
The Marquee Club will make its public debut on May 17 for a Live From Here with Chris Thile show (formerly known as A Prairie Home Companion). If you’re not a Fox member but still want to explore the club for yourself, per-show passes will be available as an upgrade on a first-come, first-serve basis for certain shows. (A pass for Live From Here costs $115 per person.)