The grandeur of the Egyptian Ballroom, designed after a temple for Ramses II at Karnak, is emphasized by its colossal columns. The nearly 25-foot towering pillars are situated around the perimeter of the 90’ x 76’ special event space. Seeing them, you immediately know you’ve arrived someplace extraordinary!
There are three distinct variations of columns immediately visible.
The flat columns are topped with a red sun disc and uraeuses—stylized upright Egyptian cobras; the head of a pharaoh; and closer to where mere mortals walk—on a carpet graphically depicting the Nile River—are elongated sconces that still stretch above guests’ heads.
The cylindrical columns, their design inspired by columns at the temple of Luxor, appear in pairs and are topped with colorful capitals of a closed lotus design.
Near the top of those columns is a band of hieroglyphics. While the hieroglyphs in the Fox Theatre are authentic, they are not arranged in a readable order. That’s one of the tidbits you’ll learn when you take a Fox Theatre Tour!
At the base of these columns are papyrus and lotus-inspired decorations.
Today, created specifically for parties, there are built-in uplights at the base of the cylindrical columns that can be set to a range of hues to match a client’s color scheme for their special event.
Many have read about the restoration efforts of the Fox Theatre, but perhaps you’re not aware that they have the only full-time Restoration Department at a theatre…anywhere in the country.
I’ll share more about them another time, but when you’re in the Egyptian Ballroom, look for a column to the right of the stage that has a “scraped” patch near its base. That patch reveals the original paint on the columns, the colors that the restoration team uses to keep the Egyptian Ballroom as vibrant today as it was in 1929.
And finally, there also are two pairs of golden columns that flank the Egyptian Ballroom stage, one of the few built-in stages in an Atlanta special events ballroom. These are obviously not as tall as the other columns, but they’re magnificent nonetheless. Don’t be fooled by their precious metal finish. Most of the gold you see in the Fox Theatre is paint that looks gold. The only true gold leaf is on Mighty Mo.
Many know that the Fox Theatre opened in December 1929, but it wasn’t until 1939 that the room became available for public events, at which time this space was renamed the “Egyptian Ballroom”, for obvious reasons.
When you visit the Egyptian Ballroom, either on a tour or as a guest at a special event, we invite you to examine and revel in the splendor of its décor and architectural details…the colossal columns are only the beginning.