Almost exactly a year ago, the Fox Theatre announced plans for a 10,000-ft. expansion featuring a rooftop terrace and generous event space. Word then was that the space — named the Marquee Club — would open this fall.

The terrace overlooking the Fox marquee. Photo: Fox Theatre

This week, that grand opening was pushed back to early 2018. The reason: Surprises encountered when design and construction crews began digging into an 88-year-old building.

“We anticipated challenges once we began construction,” Fox president and CEO Allan C. Vella said in a news release. Fox officials hope to be able to set a firm 2018 opening date soon.

The theater will reach out to anyone who has purchased a Marquee membership (annual, corporate or individual) and offer exclusive previews in the months before it opens, the statement said. Memberships are still available at 404.881.2127. Prices, which were set for 2017 and may change, are:

  • Corporate annual: $12,000.
  • Noncorporate annual: $3,000.
  • Broadway in Atlanta subscriber annual: $500 for six shows. The rate may go up or down depending on the number of shows booked.

The Marquee also plans to offer limited per-event access based on availability.

The main level of the Marquis Club (clockwise, from left); another view of the outdoor terrace; and the mezzanine level of the club. Photos: Fox Theatre

The members-only club will include a 4,000-sq. ft. rooftop terrace under the night sky and overlooking Peachtree Street, plus some 6,000 square feet of indoor event space. All of this, the most significant expansion in the theater’s history, will continue the venue’s Moroccan-style decor.

The rooftop terrace will feature a combination of indoor, solarium and outdoor spaces for climate-controlled, cooled or fully outdoor spaces. Each will have its own bar. Members will be able to use the lounge/terrace before and after events and during intermission. Other perks include:

  • The ability to buy tickets before the general public.
  • A dedicated ticketing concierge.
  • Self-parking in a dedicated lot.
  • Private entry 90 minutes before show time.
  • Complimentary nonalcoholic beverages and hors d’oeuvres.
  • Access to five bars.
  • Private restrooms.
  • The ability to pre-order drinks, desserts and coffee for intermission.

Lord Aeck Sargent, an award-winning Atlanta architectural firm that specializes in conserving and preserving historic venues, is leading the renovation. Its previous projects include Language Hall at Oxford College of Emory University in Oxford, the Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center in Buford, the mixed-use Berkshire Terminus in Buckhead and Parkmobile Corporate Headquarters in Midtown.

The 4,665-seat Fox, which hosts some 250 performances a year, is home to the Broadway in Atlanta series of touring theater productions, Atlanta Ballet’s Nutcracker and the Coca-Cola Summer Film Festival. It’s a regular stop for dance companies, children’s shows, comedians — Louis CK, Mike Epps, George Lopez — and such musicians as Ringo Starr, John Prine and Widespread Panic. These events attract more than 500,000 patrons a each year.

The Fox also is a popular site for wedding receptions, trade shows, corporate meetings and association functions.