Charlie Cheese's is a chain of family entertainment centers in Australia operated by Kabushiki Gaisha ABS.
Charlie Cheese's Pizza Playhouse (1980s-90s) Edit
In the early 80's, Pizza Time Theatre, Inc. decided to open its first family entertainment center in Australia. Initially intending to use the same "Chuck E. Cheese's Pizza Time Theatre" branding as its locations in the US, the name was changed to "Charlie Cheese's Pizza Playhouse" for within Australian borders - "chuck" is an Australian slang word used to describe vomiting.
Their only location opened within Grundy's, an amusement complex in Surfer's Paradise, Queensland. It was later moved to another part of the city, but the location shut down before the mid 90's for unknown reasons, assumed to be a general lack of business.
Charlie Cheese's (2016-present) Edit
In June 2016, Kabushiki Gaisha ABS took control of CEC Entertainment, Inc. from previous owners Apollo Global Management. ABS noted, in its announcement, that Chuck E.'s was going to expand into major international markets previously ignored by the company.
Later that month, CEC-ABS Entertainment announced that it was going to re-enter the Australian market, including an eventual launch in New Zealand. The new name was declared simply as "Charlie Cheese's", reprising part of the historic name for its brand new Australian subsidiary.
Charlie Cheese's opened their Melbourne (Victoria Gardens Shopping Centre), Southport and Sydney (Broadway Shopping Centre) locations on the 30th of September, 2016. Their first Queensland location was originally set to be opened on the site of the original Charlie Cheese's Pizza Playhouse, but this was rejected, citing that the lot would almost certainly have already been occupied by other developments. An attempt to open the location elsewhere in Surfers Paradise also fell through, forcing them to relocate the new location to Southport.
In May 2017, Charlie Cheese's had been criticised for not having enough locations in the three major cities it had opened in. One person, a resident of Frankston, Victoria, who was invited to a birthday party at Charlie Cheese's in Melbourne, reported that he had to drive over 50 kilometres in order to attend the party. On May 14, CEC-ABS later admitted that it had "severely underestimated" the size of Australian cities and their surrounding suburbs. The following day, it announced that it was going to open more locations in the initial three markets, as well as new locations in Canberra, Perth, Brisbane and Adelaide. The Canberra and Brisbane locations opened at 9:00am AEST on May 24, 2017, which also coincided with the opening of Chuck E. Cheese's in New Zealand.