Central Perk, the coffeehouse that served as one of the main settings of the iconic sitcom Friends, is getting an actual physical location.
Is Central Perk a real place?
Friends’ Central Perk is a fictional coffeehouse known as the ultimate hang-out space for Rachel (Jennifer Aniston), Monica (Courteney Cox), Phoebe (Lisa Kudrow), Joey (Matt LeBlanc), Chandler (Matthew Perry), and Ross (David Schwimmer) in the hit NBC series. But because of the show’s massive popularity, the fictional setting has inspired a number of real-life coffee shops around the world.
Central Perk Coffeehouse
The fictional cafe is the inspiration for the soon-to-rise, real-life Central Perk Coffeehouse from Warner Bros. Themed Entertainment and CenPer Holdings, LLC. Announced in August 2022, the establishment is a modern-day coffee shop imbued with the same heart and soul as the iconic setting from the sitcom. The first location of the coffeehouse will open in 2023.
“Central Perk is more than just a coffeehouse, it was a home away from home for our six favorite FRIENDS,” said Peter van Roden, SVP, Warner Bros. Themed Entertainment. “Working closely with the CenPer Holdings LLC team in creating this fresh, yet familiar environment, we’re looking forward to giving fans a Central Perk of their own — coffeehouses that capture the heart of the show while delivering a first-class coffee experience.”
Central Perk Coffee
While the first location and the exact opening date of the real-life coffee shop have yet to be announced, Friends fans are now able to get their coffee fix with the new Central Perk Coffee, a line of artisanal quality coffees made with the highest quality premium Arabica bean. Sustainably sourced, produced, and packaged using responsible environmental practices, the new coffee brand is available in three varieties: “How You Doin’?” (medium roast coffee), “Pivot Blend” (medium/dark roast coffee), and “We Were on a Coffee Break” (dark roast blend).
“Our goal with this partnership and the Central Perk brand, like all of my food and beverage enterprises, is to secure the best ingredients and then deliver superior products and services for a great customer experience,” Tom Colicchio, chef and CenPer Holdings partner, said of the venture. “With Central Perk, we can’t wait to offer friends old and new a really enjoyable premium cup of coffee and hope they settle in with us for the next chapter of this beloved story.”
Lovingly roasted and shipped directly to Friends fans through a customizable coffee subscription service or a curated multi-blend variety pack (starting at $16.99), each blend of the coffee is available in whole bean and ground formats, as well as BPI Certified compostable single-serve coffee pods compatible with Keurig K-Cup brewers.
Going solo on a coffee break? Single-pack coffee products are also available.
Launched last August 24th, Central Perk Coffee can be ordered by visiting www.centralperk.com. The first 6,000 new subscribers will receive a complimentary, individually numbered limited-edition collectible can of “How You Doin’?” coffee.
Where is Central Perk located?
In the TV series, the Central Perk coffee shop is located in Greenwich Village in New York City, in the same apartment block as Monica’s apartment. There are 97 steps away from Chandler and Joey’s apartment as Joey counts in season 1, episode 4, The One with George Stephanopoulos.
In 2006, Iranian businessman Mojtaba Asadian started a Central Perk coffee shop franchise in real life, registering the name in 32 countries, including Dubai. James Michael Tyler, who portrayed the Central Perk manager in the series, Gunther, attended the grand opening of the Dubai cafe, where he worked as a waiter.
From September 24th to October 7th, 2009, a Central Perk replica at Broadwick Street, Soho in London sold real coffee to customers and featured a display of Friends memorabilia and props. There were also three Central Perks in Liverpool, United Kingdom but all shut down in 2016.
Business owner Du Xin also opened a great coffee shop based on the sitcom’s fictional setting in March 2010 in Beijing, China.
Can you visit Central Perk in New York?
While the first real-life Central Perk cafe is yet to open later in 2023, Friends fans can visit a replica of Central Perk at The Friends Experience: The One In New York City.
Located at 130 E 23rd St, New York City, NY on the corner of Lexington Ave. and 23rd St., the immersive experience lets you step into the world of Friends. You can dance in front of the fountain featured in the title sequence of the sitcom; hang out in Monica and Rachel’s apartment; kick your feet up at Joey and Chandler’s; explore dozens of props and costumes, including Phoebe’s wedding dress, and order coffee from Central Perk.
How much does The Friends Experience in New York cost?
There are different types of tickets for the immersive experience:
- Standard Ticket costs $49.50 and includes entry into The Friends Experience and 1 free digital download of the Central Perk commemorative photo.
- Premium Ticket costs $64.50 and it includes general access to the immersive experience plus: 1 exclusive The Friends Experience merchandise item, 1 free coat or bag check token, and 1 free digital download of the Central Perk commemorative photo.
- Group Ticket is basically a discounted standard ticket. It only costs $41.25 each but is only available in sets of six.
There’s also a Flexible Entry Ticket, which includes full access to the experience at any time on your selected date, and a Guided Group Tour ticket for groups of up to 6, 8, or 10 guests, which includes entry into the experience first thing in the morning before it opens to the general public, and allows you to choose the group you attend with to have a personalized experience through the space.
Is the Friends Experience in NYC permanent?
It’s not clear whether The Friends Experience in NYC is permanent, but FeverUp.com allows you to book tickets to the experience until April 2023.
If you’re far from New York, the experience also has locations in Seattle, Philadelphia, and Paris France.