Music, Movie-Themed Bar Opens in 3CDC’s Perseverance Project

Posted on August 10, 2022 by sujvary

Local Entrepreneur Rico Grant Celebrates Opening of Newest Concept

CINCINNATI (August 11, 2022) – Local entrepreneur Rico Grant celebrated the opening of his newest endeavor in Over-the-Rhine this past weekend. Cinema is a new entertainment venue dedicated to ’90s R&B, hip-hop and classic Black films that opened at 1517 Vine Street in Cincinnati Center City Development Corp. (3CDC)’s Perseverance project.

Cinema features DJ sets focused on classic ’90s/early 2000s hip-hop and R&B, surrounded by Grant’s favorite Black films and accompanied by a great cocktail program. It’s meant to be an enjoyable place where visitors can dance and feel uplifted at the end of a long week.

Grant is a Cincinnati entrepreneur on a mission to strengthen and celebrate Black culture, which is evident in his previous businesses as well as his newest offering, Cinema. In 2019, he founded Paloozanoire, an organization that enriches the Black community with celebratory events and art exhibits and recently rolled out his grant effort, Fundnoire, a $1.5 million fund that will provide grant money to multiple Black-owned small businesses.

“Rico has done so much for the community. His energy is infectious, and we’re thrilled to be a part of his newest endeavor,” said Katie Westbrook, Development Director with 3CDC. “As we work to increase the number of Black-owned businesses in Over-the-Rhine, his partnership has been invaluable. We look forward to our continued partnership and we’re especially excited to see this concept come to fruition at Perseverance.”

In 2021, Grant opened Gallery at Gumbo on Main Street in another 3CDC space. Gumbo is part traditional barbershop, part art gallery where topics of discussion include politics, community and pop culture. While Cinema will be his first venture into the bar scene, it’s in keeping with the clientele he’s trying to reach across all of his businesses.

“Cinema is very on brand with the market I serve – the young professional who is looking to stay in Cincinnati and grow and build here,” Grant said.

For Grant, Cinema was less about opening a bar and more about opening something that spoke to his soul. The cocktail program will feature specialty drinks named after movie characters from Grant’s favorite film genre.

“I don’t consume anything new. If it’s not old, in my book, it’s not good,” Grant jokes. “This spot is a place designed for fashion lovers, those who want to dance or ‘cut a rug’ as my grandmother would say.”

Cinema OTR is open Tuesday and Wednesday 4-11 p.m.; Thursday 4 p.m. to midnight; Friday-Saturday 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.; and Sunday noon to midnight.

Cinema, which encompasses 1,600 square feet, is the third business to sign a lease in 3CDC’s Perseverance project, joining Qlicious and Boutique Bellini. The $13.9 million Perseverance project, which was a collaboration between 3CDC and Over-the-Rhine Community Housing (OTRCH), consisted of the renovation of three historic buildings that created 32 affordable residential units to those making 50-60% of the Area Median Income, along with 6,700 square feet of street-level commercial space.

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