Citilites at Schuster Performing Arts Center

4.2
631 reviews
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$30 and under
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American
Citilites Restaurant & Bar is a casual dining restaurant located in the Kettering Wintergarden of the Benjamin & Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center in Dayton, serving lunch Monday through Friday and lunch or dinner prior to performances in the Mead Theatre and some performances at the Victoria Theatre.
Dining Style
Casual Dining
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Cuisines
American
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Hours of operation
Lunch: Monday - Friday: 11:00am - 2:00pm

Dinner: 2.5 hours before most Schuster performances
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Phone number
(937) 222-0623
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Matt DeAngelo
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
Main Street
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Parking details
Free 2 hour parking for lunch, Monday - Friday 11AM - 2PM Excluding matinees and special events
What 631 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.1
food
4.2
service
4.1
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
85% of people would recommend it to a friend
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JE
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

I always eat here be going to shows at the Schuster. It makes it so easy for us. There is sometime entertainment.

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KO
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

We went for a lunch before the Dayton Opera's Sunday matinee. We were seated in the atrium, with huge windows, palm trees and great, live music. The atmosphere was lovely. Our winter salad was fresh, with a delicious dressing. The crab cakes were a little bit too dense for our liking...but the House Bourbini was perfect! Definitely recommending this restaurant for a pre-theater dining!

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JT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 5

The fish sandwich was good but seemed to be from frozen fillets. The crinkled garlic fries may have also come from a bag of frozen fries and i did not notice any garlic flavor.

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D
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 4food 5service 3ambience 3

The food was interesting and flavorful, a creative dining experience. The restaurant was very crowded, however, and they seemed not to have enough servers. Since most of the patrons had tickets for an 8:00 performance, we all felt rushed and anxious for our food. We finally got our entrees at 7:15, and our checks at 7:45, and had to rush to our seats. Our reservstion was for 6:30. The next time I would move that to 6:00 to avoid having to gulp our dinners!

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O
Cleveland
1 review
Dined on November 9, 2018
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 5

My group of 7 opera-goers was looking forward to the ambiance of Citilites, but it took 20 minutes to get a drink, 40 minutes to receive our dinners, and the food was cold when it arrived. The computer was not able to correctly calculate our bills and that took another 30 minutes. On the bright side, the music was wonderful.

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CN
1 review
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 2food 4service 2ambience 2

We were expecting an upscale dining experience. The restaurant was very busy. The waiter seemed more interested in the tables of women then serving us. It took about 45 minutes to receive our main dish. I was hoping we might try dessert but totally ran out of time. I felt the service was slow and could have been more attentive. I did enjoy my main dish - the pork with chestnuts. For the price, I will pass on this restaurant in the future.

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OT
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 3ambience 4

Dinner before show. Not a huge selection but food was good. Husband wished his Alfredo noodles had more sauce. My tomato bisque was very good. Took a long time to get our drinks. Other than that the wait time was OK. We have experienced very long wait times with service there in the past, actually worrying that we would miss the beginning of the show. The table next to us experienced that. But this time we had no problems except for our drinks that we ordered.

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TL
Pittsburgh
4 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 4

We have been here many times for pre-theater dinner and had a nice dinner; however, this time was a bit disappointing. The waitress appeared to be over-whelmed. We had to ask her for bread, water was not refilled, my order was not correct and had to be sent back, my husband asked for condiments and they never made it to the table. When we finished dinner, we were never offered coffee or dessert; the bill just showed up. We felt that we were being rushed out. Very disappointed!!!!

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LT
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on October 25, 2018
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Average food. Service was attentive. Kitchen was slow. The convenience factor before seeing a performance at the Schuster Center, however, makes up for the shortcomings.

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c
Cincinnati
9 reviews
Dined on October 23, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 2

The latest in the meals we have eaten at Citilites. We were promptly seated, and service was quick and attentive throughout the meal (a little unusual for Citilites). As usual, the starters/salad portions of the meal (tomato bisque and Wintergreen salads) were excellent, and this time the entrees met the standards set by the other courses (again, a little unusual for Citilites). I had the Chef's Double Smashed Burger, which was very good, but then again not a very challenging dish; spouse had the Brie Pasta, which was proclaimed excellent and the best entree experienced in our visits there. Really only had two complaints this time: (1) We were seated in the "outer" area of the restaurant. We prefer the "inner" area, which (even though it is near the kitchen and bar) is much quieter, less impacted by outdoor weather conditions, and in our minds has a nicer ambiance. (2) The meal is a little pricey for the food quality. We recognize that part of what we are paying for is the convenience (it is nice, especially in inclement weather, to go straight from the meal to your theater seats), and this time it was easier to accept as the entree quality was definitely better than normal. But, when the entree is only okay, it is easy to get tempted to have dinner somewhere else.

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G
1 review
Dined on October 20, 2018
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 2

I will NEVER eat there again! The waiter did not come for 20 minutes, and I had to get the Hostess' attention to the matter (even though we were seated right behind her). But the worse part was Phillip, the manager. He came by and when I told him it had taken the waiter 20 minutes to come, he said he'd look into it. Really? At a supposed upscale restaurant? No offer of what can I do to make this experience better for you? Really appalled.

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E
1 review
Dined on October 19, 2018
Overall 3food 4service 4ambience 1

Reminds me of a school cafeteria. All dressed up for the philharmonic, however the ambience of citilites was abysmal. Needs a total makeover! Some tablecloths would be nice.

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g
Cincinnati
6 reviews
Dined on October 13, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 5ambience 4

Tried the crab cakes again after not liking them last time. They are still not as good as they used to be, so will not order them again. Really disappointing since that has always been my favorite dish. The corn relish now has more "kick" than it used to as well....maybe to make up for the lack of crab. Manager offered a comp drink last time when I was not happy with the cakes, so I did enjoy my comp drink with dinner, thanks to Eric. They really do try to please, and the Citilites food usually makes me very happy. Bar staff does a great job.

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MG
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on October 7, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 5

Always love eating at Citilites before a theater show -- food is always original and delicious! Excellent service from our waiter Bryan, food just seemed to take a little longer this particular time.

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FE
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 5ambience 3

Our reservation was at 6:45 because of the show being at 8 p.m. and it was very slow service and we were not able to finish our dinner. Filet was overcooked, no flavor, the beef jerky was horrible. Salad was great, no time for dessert. Potatoes were horrible.

Carol Enscoe

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CG
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 3ambience 5

You still have superb service but this time it just wasn’t up to par

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MS
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Good place to go before events and if you work downtown

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CK
1 review
Dined on October 6, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

Great place to dine before the Broadway series matinee. The food is very good and well presented the portions generous. I do wish they would offer the half sandwich and salad or soup option again.
The service is very good.

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E
Little Rock
3 reviews
Dined on October 4, 2018
Overall 4food 2service 3ambience 4

Nice venue to eat before a show, open and airy. Interesting menu, but some of us were disappointed in our food. Osso bucco was very dry, burger was good, but house-made(?) or specialty chips did not taste well.

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OT
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on October 4, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 5ambience 4

Dinner & a show

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OT
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Our waiter was phenomenal. The food was exceptionally good.

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OT
Washington DC
1 review
Dined on October 3, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Always a great choice for us before our show starts. The food is delicious! Service is impeccable.

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h
Cincinnati
3 reviews
Dined on October 3, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 3

please bring back the butternut squash lasagna with sage cream sauce.

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V
Cincinnati
5 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

We enjoy eating here before our Broadway series shows. It is very convenient.

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BD
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on October 2, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great food, good service as usual. We always eat here before attending shows at the Schuster Center. Very convenient as well.

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JM
Cincinnati
14 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

Saturday night before the Symphony and nothing can beat the convenience of Citilites. But I'm happy to report that their menu is updated and offers some very nice options. Nothing too heavy because who wants to fall asleep in the show, but interesting and varied options.

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DS
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 3food 5service 1ambience 4

The kitchen was SLOW. VERY SLOWl The food was great as was the waiter but you get a big fat "O" for VERY slow service

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BK
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 4

The best feature about this restsurant is its proximity to the adjoining performing arts center. Ultimate convenience!
And good quality too!
They don’t rush you either.

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g
Cincinnati
7 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

I rated the food lower than usual because the crab cakes, which I have enjoyed on multiple occasions, were just not up to par. Hardly any crab, and almost all bread, and the corn garnish (which adds so much to the dish) was missing. The corn was brought out immediately when I mentioned that is was absent. It was much needed to counteract the dryness of the crab cakes.

We are frequent diners, and the manager acknowledged our issue in an appropriate manner which we appreciated. I think this was a one-time fluke, and we will certainly be back for crab cakes in the future.

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D
Cincinnati
4 reviews
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 3

We've dined at Citilites many times. This time was really disappointing. The service was fine, but the food was not -- dry chicken, unexceptional pasta and tasteless chicken on top. All in all a miss and certainly not a great value.

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EK
Columbus
1 review
Dined on September 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious food, surprising flavors, and wonderful staff. Will definitely come again!

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MN
1 review
Dined on September 28, 2018
Overall 2food 1service 3ambience 3

We have eaten here before and enjoyed it - however, this was our most disappointing visit. The food took a long time and when it came 10 min before showtime, ( we arrived at 6:20 for an 8 p.m. performance) it was overcooked and there was no time to refire. Our bill was $130 - way too much for what we received for two people.

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P
Cincinnati
16 reviews
Dined on September 28, 2018
Overall 4food 3service 3ambience 4

Usually I rate Citilites 5 star. I hope last night was an exception. We sat opposite the bar where we normally sit. Usually, the bartender is not also a wait staffer. Last night she was both, contributing to slow service. We felt sorry for her. One of our guests dinner was missed and it was too late to reorder (we had a concert). Service seemed haphazard and food was tepid not hot. We wondered if they have had turnover and some staff didn’t show up. We agreed restaurant business is tough.
As always, wait staff were friendly and we tipped full amount but we think we’ll skip Citilites before next concert. They need to sort things out.

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RW
Cincinnati
2 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 1food 2service 3ambience 1

Arrive on time at 6:30PM for dinner prior to the 8:00pm show. Seated at a table in the back corner adjacent to the kitchen. It was a noisy area. Service was slow. Wanted the beef special but they were out of it. The vegetable my date ordered was not well cooked. It would have been a better experience had we gone to McDonalds.

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P
Cincinnati
16 reviews
Dined on September 15, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We so enjoy the ambiance. Welcoming wait staff, good food and service. Urbane and sophisticated atmosphere before the show.

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JB
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on August 29, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great choice for a Downtown Dayton lunch! Our server was friendly and attentive.

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OT
Columbus
1 review
Dined on June 28, 2018
Overall 5food 3service 5ambience 4

Trivia and tots was fun!

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OT
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on June 25, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 4

The dessert tray was AMAZING!

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S
Cincinnati
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2018
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent service. Delicious salad. Delicious appetizers. (We didn't't order an entre.)

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AL
1 review
Dined on June 7, 2018
Overall 3food 2service 4ambience 4

I would suggest an extension to the appetizer menu. Other than that it was a good introduction to their Happy Hour.

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