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As a part of Ian and Eric Hilton’s next phase of expansion, the brothers plan to open a basement pool hall beneath the Shake Shack going into 1400 14th St. NW. There will be billiards, but also around 40 different machines. “Like basketball games and claw machines where you can pull out K-Y Jelly and shit,” Ian Hilton says. “It’s going to be goofy.” Other games include Asteroids, Ms. Pac-Man, and Galaga.
The name is still being finalized, but it’s inspired by commercials from the 1970s and 1980s starring Telly Savalas. “When I was a kid, there was a commercial about a credit card you could get, it was called the Player’s Club Card,” Ian Hilton says. “It was the cheesiest thing.” Potential names therefore include The Player and The Player’s Club.
“The design of it is really fricken cool. It’s going to feel a little elevated,” Ian Hilton says describing the space which is being designed by Michael Francis. Francis also designed Maketto and Denson Liquor Bar through his company Queue design which is merging with Design Republica to form SAINT (Studio for Architecture and Interiors).
“Essentially Player’s Club is going to be this raw basement space activated by games with a super playful retro vibe,” Francis says. ” There will probably be some cheesy wood paneling on the walls, some vintage hangings and light fixtures.”
Sustenance comes in the form of cheap food and cheap beer. “There will be food served but it’ll come from an old school pick-up window where someone dings a bell,” Francis explains. “It’ll be a fun place for people to kick back and reminisce.”
The pool hall is not the only project from the Hilton brothers going into the building. Washingtonian reports that on the second floor (above Shake Shack) there will be a bar called French 75 specializing in champagne and French cocktails. Both are scheduled to open in Summer 2017.
Earlier this week, it was announced that the Hiltons are re-opening the Chez Billy location as Ten Tigers Parlor with the help of Chef Tim Ma in the kitchen. Then there’s The Brighton, a waterfront pub, coming to The Wharf. Finally, the Hiltons will open several concepts, including Crimson Diner, in Chinatown’s Pod D.C. Hotel.
The duo’s D.C. nightlife dynasty already includes The Gibson, Marvin, American Ice Company, The Brixton, El Rey, and more.