Alex Elowitz began working as a change boy in a Coney Island arcade when he was 12 years old. He went to the army and upon returning opened the Playland Arcade in Coney Island with his brother, Stan Fox in 1949. The first Playland Arcade was on 20th Street and the Boardwalk in the Washington Baths building. Playlands at 15th Street and the Boardwalk and 12th Street and the Boardwalk (where Nathan’s is now) followed. They opened 4 and the last was demolished in 2012 after being abandoned for about 30 years.
Alex and Stan bought the business from the surviving Katz brother for $50,000 and leased the building from Klein and Moran, who also owned the Thunderbolt. Rent for the entire 1957 season was $15,000. They operated the arcade until 1977, when they sold the business to the Getlan brothers. In 1981 the arcade machines were auctioned and the business closed, leaving Playland vacant for the past thirty years.
On Feb 14, 2013, the building was demolished, but the Coney Island Historic Society was able to save some letters and items left from the last building.