The "World's First Television Lounge," 1949

In 1949, ordinary Americans were buying televisions to an extent that some bar owners worried that the sets installed in their establishments would no longer draw the crowds they once did. That's why the savvy owner of New York's Hotel Beverly opened a special lounge featuring a "'life-size' television receiver" that projected the image on a four- by six-foot screen. Click through for more info about what Liquor Store and Dispenser (does it make you as happy as it does me to know that there once was a magazine with that name?) called the "world's first television cocktail lounge."

The TV lounge at the Hotel Beverly seated forty patrons "just like a small movie house," except with "the added convenience of seats with a large arm rest to hold sandwiches and beverages." That's right, there was food service in addition to the cocktails.

As a further service . . . [the hotel's general manager] has initiated a "coming events" mailing list. Patrons will receive a weekly schedule of video highlights "as a personal reminder, and a convenience in arranging parties at the Beverly."


Food, booze, and TV—it had to be a huge success.

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