Monday night’s council meeting paved the way for the redevelopment of the historic Top Hat site. While one of downtown’s legendary landmarks will meet the wrecking ball, Mr. Sam Drakich was kind enough to give me a tour of the building, and to capture a few last photographs of the venerable landmark.
There isn’t too much left inside following the auction that occurred shortly after closing, but there is a lot of entertainment history in that building.
A look at the foyer doors.
A view down the hallway towards the dining room.
The opposite side of the corridor wall in the main dining room.
The Old Country Room – Today
The Old Country Room – Then
The colored glass bottles inset in the wall. These bottles were inserted as part of the renovation in the late 1960’s.
The Bar in what was originally the “Jungle Room”. Later this space was known as the “Living Room Lounge”, before finishing it’s days as “Tails”.
A vintage cash register remains on the bar.
A view of the glass block panels along University Ave. from the inside.
A pile of old promotional photographs remains. Everyone from Martha Reeves and the Vandellas (l) to the Korean Kittens (r).
The dressing room door with the star on it. A relic that didn’t sell at the auction.
The legendary stage of the Top Hat.
Many famous (and not so famous) performers graced this stage. From Buddy Rich to Rich Little, with almost everyone in between. One of the least expected names to have graced the Top Hat stage, has to be actor Christopher Walken, who appeared as a dancer (long before he became a movie star) for sex symbol & actress Mamie Van Doren
A look backstage reveals that the funky mid century wall paper seen in yesterday’s post, behind the stage, is still there.
This is the view from the stage.
Farewell to the top hat, and best of luck to the Drakich family in their next ventures.