Film Journal International: Korea’s CJ CGV Chain Plans its First Movie Theatre in New York City
Leading real estate development companies F&T Group and SCG America announced that South Korea-based CJ CGV, the fifth-largest global cinema chain, has signed a lease for a 34,000-square-foot multiplex at Tangram in Flushing, Queens.
CGV Tangram Flushing will become the third CGV Cinemas location in the United States, and the first in New York City. This new location continues CJ CGV’s expansion efforts in the U.S. after becoming one of the largest cinema operators in Asia, including 89 theatres in China and growing. The theatre will be located within the 1.2-million-square-foot Tangram mixed-use development.
“Flushing is one of the most exciting neighborhoods in all of New York City—a cultural hub undergoing a vast transformation from a small Queens neighborhood to one of the most sought-after real estate markets in the city,” stated F&T Group executive VP Helen Lee. “The standard of living has certainly elevated, and sophisticated residents and visitors alike want more. Through the culmination of years of F&T Group’s vision, hard work and planning, Tangram is the answer to this shift, as evidenced by attracting a renowned global brand like CJ CGV.”
At the core of the retail component will be CJ CGV’s unique moviegoing experience known as “Cultureplex”—a concept emphasizing the entire movie theatre as a complete and immersive cultural experience. CJ CGV will also tap its expertise in programming top Hollywood and Asian films. CGV Tangram Flushing will be the first theatre to open in Flushing in 30 years.
The complex will include two immersive cinema experiences—the first 4DX location in Queens and the first ScreenX auditorium in New York City. 4DX allows the audience to connect with movies through motion vibration and environmental effects such as wind and rain. ScreenX provides a 270-degree panoramic theatre experience, extending the screen visuals to the left and right. The new theatre is set to have seven auditoriums in total.
Tangram is inspired by the traditional Chinese dissection puzzle “tangram,” which consists of seven flat pieces called tans put together to form shapes. All the pieces of Tangram will come together to offer a year-round lifestyle destination that will also include 317 residences, 48 office condos, a lifestyle hotel, a chef-driven food court and high-fashion shopping.
As of July 2017, CJ CGV operated 3,120 screens at 412 cinemas. “As we continue to expand worldwide, our presence in the United States is essential. When we discovered the opportunity to be an integral part of Tangram, we knew being in this economically vibrant and evolving neighborhood was where our first East Coast movie theatre had to be,” said Paul Richardson, chief operating officer of CJ CGV. “Tangram offers all the essentials of first-class entertainment that will now include CJ CGV’s next generation of storytelling. We’re excited to be a part of this forward-thinking, robust destination.”
“There’s an energy in Flushing that cannot be ignored, and Tangram is at the epicenter,” stated SCG America executive VP Thunder Zhou. “CJ CGV has over 1,000 movie screens in Korea alone, and now they’re a part of Tangram. It’s an amazing testament to the quality of our product and to the evolution of the neighborhood.”
Geoff Bailey of SCG Retail, the exclusive retail broker of Tangram, represented the project as well as CJ CGV in the deal.
Construction is underway at the full-block site, with frontage on 37th Avenue, Prince Street, 39thAvenue and College Point Boulevard. Retail will be delivered first, with an expected 3Q 2018 opening. Additional offerings will include international and domestic fashion brands, high-end restaurants, a culinary food hall and a variety of entertainment options. Designed by Manhattan-based design studio BHDM, the retail space will embrace an indoor-outdoor aesthetic. It will be enclosed by a glass skylight with a central atrium within a two-level, 225,000-square-foot retail podium, reminiscent of a sprawling piazza.
“Simply put, Tangram is a game-changer for Flushing,” Lee declared. “It’s truly unlike anything ever seen or done in the neighborhood.”
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