Marcus Samuelsson restaurant coming to the Perelman PAC

The chef Marcus Samuelsson, of Red Rooster fame in Harlem, will run the restaurant at the Perelman PAC — and I hope it’s like his super fun and lively spot Marcus B&P out by NJPAC in Newark — and it will be open to the public seven days a week. (The images below are not great – they are from the presentation at CB1 — and I will see if I can secure better ones.)

The not-for-profit entity that will operate the PAC is on the liquor license along with Samuelson’s restaurant group; they presented to CB1 this month. (The applicant on the application is World Trade Center Performing Arts Center, not Perelman, so I will check on that.)

I toured a ways back with the architect, Tribecan Joshua Ramus, and while I couldn’t use those pictures, the tour did give me a sense of the space and how it will work. The stairs on the south side of the cube, facing the memorial, lead visitors up into the building — you enter the cube from its underside, so it is a dramatic (no pun intended) entrance, since the cube is suspended above you.

The theater center’s lobby is on that second floor at the top of the stairs, as is the restaurant and its outdoor terrace, which is on the north side of the building. That will all be open to the public. The restaurant is 5600 square feet with 40 tables and 160 seats with 10 tables and 40 seats at the bar. (There are three theaters and they are designed to be reconfigured and combined. The smallest has a capacity of 80, the largest is 350, and the most common configuration is about 400. Maximum seating would be 800 or 850. See the cool video illustration below.)

There will be live music and DJs at the restaurant — of course! it’s a *performing* arts center — and I am not sure how anything there could disturb anyone since no one lives at the WTC (100 Barclay is the closest building and it is 260 feet away), but CB1 still had some concerns about that. The terrace will close at 11p. (Members were also worried that people would “get loaded and then leave” after a show. Not sure what that is about.)

I am curious about the traffic patterns: the operators said black cars (and taxis) will be able to pull up in front of the PAC and at One WTC.

The performance spaces are on the fourth floor, and there will be a couple bars up there as well. The license covers all of these.

The PAC is scheduled to open in September this year, if they stay on track.

PS: The lawyer Max Bookman, who represents dozens of applicants in the neighborhood, had some stats about the State Liquor License, shedding some light on how many new spots have had to operate with no drinks. He said that five years ago, it took the SLA about two months to approve an attorney-certified license application; it is now taking closer to eight months. Processing times are also getting worse. He said the SLA has a 10-point plan to speed things up, but that has not shown a difference yet.



  1. I’m very excited about this performing arts center and restaurant. Love Marcus’ food since Aquavit days. Thank you for reporting on it.

  2. So that will be the only one cuisine choice along with blaring DJ music. Great