Best known for its spooky, old-timey vibes and a rotating slate of immersive plays and performances, The McKittrick Hotel was forced to close its doors back in March of 2020, much to the dismay of drama junkies and staff alike.
Sixteen months later, in July 2021, it was announced they would resume ticket sales for Sleep No More performances in October 2021. For a variety of reasons (the Delta variant and a lack of show-goers chief among them), that never happened, and the show’s reopening was pushed back to February 2022.
But now, alas, the day has finally come, and after welcoming the critically acclaimed Sleep No More home last week, the 1930s-themed mecca of inventive dinner theater has triumphantly returned to its pre-pandemic grandeur — and then some.
While attendees can enjoy an expansion of tableside magic show Speakeasy Magick, the recently transformed rooftop at Gallow Green, a new seasonal menu from the hotel’s Executive Chef, Pascal Le Seac’H, and the reintroduction of Sleep No More, those are hardly the only reasons to pencil in a visit.
We recently took a trip to Chelsea to visit The McKittrick to take stock of the offerings and left with many sentiments. Regret was not one of them.
Go to dinner
Touted as being New York’s “best hidden secret,” The McKittrick’s rooftop venue Gallow Green has undergone its annual transformation from a verdant garden to a cozy, yurt-appointed refuge where patrons can enjoy libations and fare while draped in skeepskins and Tartan blankets.
Reimagined for the winter season by designer Jessie Flynn, The Hideout at Gallow Green features tables reserved exclusively for dining on one side, and on the other, private yurts for up to six and a number of quiet corners into which guests can tuck for a hot beverage and light snacks. And while we are admitted proponents of The McKittrick’s cocktails (try the Sleep No More), we’d be remiss not to recommend staying for dinner proper for the full Gallow Green experience.
Le Seac’H’s latest menu includes items such as oysters, winter stew and assorted cheeses to start, followed by entrees including fish and chips, duck shepherd’s pie, beef ale and pie, grilled organic salmon and steak au poivre. On Fridays and Saturdays, the menu expands to include a variety of pizzas, too. Sorbet and sticky toffee pudding highlight the dessert menu, and we do recommend saving room for dessert. It’s exactly the sort of hearty, wholesome menu that the ambience deserves.
Stay for a show
If you’re headed to The McKittrick, it’s more than likely you’re planning to see a show. As previously mentioned, the big news is that after a nearly two-year hiatus, Sleep No More — “the dark and dreamlike show that reshaped the landscape of participatory theater” as theTimes’ Alexis Soloski once described the Macbeth-inspired production — finally returned on Valentine’s Day, with performances now offered on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7 p.m., Fridays at 7:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 3 and 8 p.m.
That said, Sleep No More isn’t the only entertainment experience worth the price of admission. Alongside the immersive murder mystery in a pub The Woman in Black, there’s Speakeasy Magick, which took up residency at The McKittrick nearly three years ago and has been met with a near constant slew of rave reviews ever since.
Not a magic person, you say? Think again. Speakeasy Magick is edgy, gripping, intimate and just straight up good fun. The show features parlor magic and up-close-and-personal prestidigitation by the city’s top magical talents, and feels not dissimilar to speed-dating in nature.
Initially set to end this month, tickets to the show — which is hosted by veteran entertainer Todd Robbins (Off-Broadway’s Play Dead) and also includes performers Alex Boyce (How to Transcend a Happy Marriage), Jason Suran (The Other Side), Mark Calabrese (Penn & Teller: Fool Us), Matthew Holtzclaw (Penn & Teller: Fool Us), Prakash Puru (celebrity favorite) and Rachel Wax (A Taste of Magic) — are now available for performances through April 2.
Of course, if this is to be your first foray into the whimsical world of The McKittrick and you have not yet experienced the spectacle that is Sleep No More, you should most certainly start there. If you do, it’s highly unlikely to be your last, anyway.
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