June 1, By Michael Dorgan
A large indoor soccer complex that opened in Astoria at the start of the year is expanding in size.
The facility, located at 36-39 35th St., will increase from two small soccer pitches to four by the end of June, according to the manager of the establishment.
The complex is operated by Socceroof, a Brooklyn-based company that currently runs two other indoor soccer facilities — one in Sunset Park and the other in Crown Heights, Brooklyn.
The company took over a 10,000 square foot space at the 35th Street building last year — a single-story former industrial space.
Socceroof then converted its space into two small artificial turf soccer pitches, each measuring 80 feet by 50 feet. The complex, which opened on Jan. 1, also has a bar and lounge area.
The company has now signed a lease on the remaining 10,000 square foot space at the building. The extra space is currently being renovated and two new small pitches – also measuring 80 feet by 50 feet — are being put down. The remodeling will also include expanding its lounge area.
Thibaud Malange, the manager of the facility, said business has been terrific since opening and the operators are looking to capitalize on that success by increasing the number of playing pitches at the complex.
“Word has been getting out that we are here and lots of groups have been coming to check us out,” Malange said.
“We are very happy about expanding.”
The facility, Malange said, has proven to be a big hit with residents since indoor soccer space in Queens is limited. Malange also said that soccer in Queens is thriving, as evidenced by the launch of the Queensboro FC soccer franchise, and this has been another factor in the facility’s appeal.
Malange said pitches at the facility are typically leased out to groups to play games. Slots start at a minimum of one hour.
Each small pitch can host 5 a-side games. Furthermore, two small pitches can also be converted into one larger pitch for 7 a-side games, he said.
The pitches are open to people of all ages and all skill levels, Malange said. The company also hosts soccer leagues.
“We want to create a community space where everyone can play together,” Malange said.
“It’s also a fantastic way for kids to discover soccer and learn the skills of the game.”
The pitches can also be rented for other sports such as Lacrosse and ultimate Frisbee, he said.
Players often hang out at the bar and lounge areas after their sessions, Malange said. The bar and lounge can also be rented for private events and parties, he said. Some groups rent a pitch for special occasions such as birthday parties and then celebrate in the lounge afterward, he said.
The facility offers food such as pizza, hot dogs and snacks while sodas, juices and Gatorade can also be purchased.
The complex also has a full liquor license and serves draft beers such as Modelo, Heineken and Blue Moon as well as Angry Orchard cider. Canned alcoholic beverages include Corona, White Claw, Guinness and IPAs. There is also wine on the menu, Malange said.
He said residents don’t have to use the pitches to frequent the bar or lounge and the facility has been attracting soccer fans to just watch games on TV such as the Champions League final.
There are three televisions in the bar and one in the lounge, he said.