Monday, October 12, 2015

Your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man

Spider-Man fighting overdevelopment on Avenue A and East 11th Street?

Photo today Grant Shaffer

3 new retail tenants for 51 Astor Place: Bluestone Lane Coffee, Chop’t and Flywheel Sports

[EVG file photo]

Here's the news via the EVG inbox...

SRS Real Estate Partners announces the signing of three retail transactions at Edward J. Minskoff’s 51 Astor Place. Leases were recently executed with “best in class” operators Bluestone Lane Coffee, Chop’t Creative Salad Company and Flywheel Sports.

These three tenants join CVS at the building, further transforming the Astor Place streetscape and enhancing the amenities for the office tenants and surrounding neighborhood. Only one retail space remains in the 400,000 SF Fumihiko Maki-designed tower.

Here's more about Bluestone Lane Coffee, which has five Manhattan locations:

Bluestone Lane offers a refined product proposition dedicated to producing the highest quality coffee and complimentary foods, delivered in an engaging way. We are focused on creating environments where customers are immersed in the experience and leave feeling like a local.

Bluestone Lane Coffee is influenced from the renowned coffee culture hub of Melbourne, Australia, where premium coffee is a way of life.

Buy a condo on East 4th Street, get a photo of graffiti art

As we've been reporting, there's a gut rehab (new building really) happening at 324 E. Fourth St. between Avenue C and Avenue D… The condoplex is called Altes House.

The above photos show how the address — with three new floors — is looking these days… before eventually looking like…

[Image via Mortar Architecture + Development]

In December 2013 and January 2014, the then-empty building served as a makeshift gallery for a group of 40-plus artists, as was widely reported.

We'll get back to that in a moment. Yesterday, The New York Times had an update on what's going on at the Altes House.

First, the pricing for the units, which will sport lacquered cabinets and Carrara marble counters in the kitchens, with walnut vanities and heated towel racks in the bathrooms.

Altes House’s apartments, which are expected to open this winter, range from one-bedrooms with about 600 square feet to a three-bedroom penthouse with about 1,600 square feet. Prices average about $1,300 a square foot, or starting at $749,000 for a one-bedroom. The Miller Samuel appraisal company estimates that apartments typically sell for about $1,100 a foot in the neighborhood. Sales are to start this month through the Harkov Lewis Team of Halstead Property Development Marketing.

And then there's the memento that Altes House buyers will receive upon signing up...

Provocative artwork, some depicting Cubist nudes, children’s toys and explosives, that was splashed across walls in the empty building ... and discovered by Mortar Architecture and Development, the developer, has been professionally photographed for posterity. And buyers in the 11-unit, seven-story project ... will receive these framed photos as gifts, to preserve the building’s legacy.

“There were things that were broken, there was this graffiti everywhere, but once you started to get into it, and look at it, you started to become amazed by each piece,” said Anthony Morena, the principal of Mortar, about that morning in January 2014 when he entered the abandoned building and discovered the striking street art. To others, the scene inside might have appeared to be major vandalism. Cupboards were smashed, a stove was painted black and Budweiser bottles styled like Molotov cocktails were stenciled onto a cupboard.

Previously on EV Grieve:
2 new floors, gut renovation in store for empty tenement that last housed a Hanksy art show

At Hanksy's 'Surplus Candy' art show in an abandoned East Village tenement

Gut renovations underway at 324 E. 4th St., most recently the makeshift gallery for Hanksy and Co.

The unique façade of 324 E. 4th St. is gone

324 E. 4th St. getting the 2 building look (but just 1 rooftop terrace)

Teaser site arrives for the Altes House, 11 boutique condos for East 4th Street

[EVG photo from February 2014]

Arepa Factory has opened on Avenue A

The quick-serve Venezuelan restaurant opened Saturday at 147 Avenue A near East Ninth Street …

It wasn't open yet for the day when we walked by… but the space looks nice on the inside…

Has anyone tried it yet??? (They have a Twitter account here.)

The storefront used to be part of Café Pick Me Up, which decamped to join the Gnocco space on East 10th Street back in June.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Arepa Factory coming soon to Avenue A

After nearly 4 years empty, 37 St. Mark's Place may be getting new retail tenants

Workers have removed the for lease signs and put up paper on the windows at 37 St. Mark's Place … where several storefronts here in the corner building at Second Avenue have sat empty since late 2011.

Timi's Gelateria Classica™ closed at the end of 2011 in one of the spaces… while Michael "Bao" Huynh's Baoguette Cafe shut down at summer's end in 2012.

Still no takers for the former 7-Eleven space next door, though…

Previously on EV Grieve:
[Updated] Reader report: The 7-Eleven on St. Mark's Place has closed (48 comments)

A few more details about renting the former 7-Eleven space on St. Mark's Place

Timi's Gelateria Classica™ facing eviction on St. Mark's Place

[Updated] Baoguette Cafe still looks rather closed

Avenue A's high-wire act

Several readers have asked in recent weeks what the story is with the wire/line that, in the right light, is very visible above Avenue A between East Seventh Street and East Sixth Street (and maybe elsewhere?)… it has been up there for months now… running from the light pole on the northwest corner of Sixth Street to the southeast corner of Seventh Street… and then across to the northwest corner of Seventh Street…

Another view…

… and because of contractual obligations…

… and it also stretches from the northwest corner of Sixth Street to the southeast corner… (and it looks like some wire up at Fifth and A too...)

[Photo by Derek Berg]

Perhaps a clue on Avenue A and East Fourth Street…

Facts and theories welcome…

Updated 9:08 a.m.

That was fast! Many people had the answer... see the comments for the explanation...

Sunday, October 11, 2015

So long Sounds

Tonight is the last night for Sounds at 20 St. Mark's Place... after 36 years in business here between Second Avenue and Third Avenue...

Thank you @helenango for the photo...

Previously on EV Grieve:
The last record store on St. Mark's Place is closing

Week in Grieview

[Photo on 2nd Avenue yesterday by Derek Berg]

The Union Square Food Emporium will become a Key Food (Tuesday)

Out and About with Elsie Flores of the Andrew Glover Youth Program (Wednesday)

Owners of the Wayland opening the Drift on Avenue C (Monday)

The Red & Gold Boil has closed on St. Mark's Place (Tuesday)

Ben Shaoul replacing luxury rentals with condos at Bloom 62 (Friday)

A family continues to feel the loss on Second Avenue (Thursday)

Bench in Tompkins Square Park dedicated to food writer Josh Ozersky (Tuesday)

Former home of the East 12th Party Crew now for sale (Monday)

The Korean Teachers’ Credit Union now owns 49% of 51 Astor Place, which people still think is in Midtown South (Wednesday)

Indian-speciality movie rental shop closes on East Sixth Street (Friday)

As the traffic islands disappear and appear on Third Avenue (Tuesday)

Brewing Soon signage arrives for Caffe Bene on Avenue A (Monday)

Purple Ginger out, Kin Asian Bistro is in on East Sixth Street (Thursday)

A rental with everything but the kitchen sink (no, really) (Thursday)

MoRUS extends Adam Purple memorial show through Oct. 25 (Wednesday)

Long-dormant First Avenue development site changes hands (Tuesday)

Squirrel jumping (Tuesday)

Old Flat Top's new friend (Monday)

Black Seed bagels opens Monday (tomorrow) on First Avenue (Thursday)

When it's time to remove the Mickey Mouse statue with an erection from the Standard East Village (Tuesday)

4-bedroom rentals arrive at 329 E. 10th St. (Friday)

A barber shop is coming soon to East Second Street (Thursday)

… and the vintage boutique Dusty Buttons opened yesterday in its new home at 324 E. Ninth St. between First Avenue and Second Avenue… (back story here)

[Image via Facebook]

Finally, you can get a burger served on a chocolate doughnut on the Bowery

[EVG photo from last week]

PYT — "Home of America's Craaaziest Burgers" — debuted on the Bowery last evening. This is the first NYC outpost of the Philadelphia burger place known for some pretty wacky creations.

See for yourself on their sidewalk sign here at 334 Bowery between Great Jones and Bond… for local flavor, PYT is offering the Basquiat Premium Beef Burger…

For now, PYT's hours are 7 p.m. to midnight… and cash only.

In the meantime, you can check out PYT preview pieces at Gothamist … and Eater

Since last November, Forcella, Espoleta and Gia Trattoria have come and gone fairly quickly at this address.

Previously on EV Grieve:
PYT bringing its offbeat burger creations to the Bowery


H/T @HopeBeach

Heart around the Park

[Photo by Lola Sáenz]

The Hearts of the World project made a stop yesterday afternoon in Tompkins Square Park…

First, here's more about the Project:

Hearts of the World allows children, many from devastated areas, to explore their inner worlds, their passion, their fears and their unique potential. Since 2010, Hearts of the World has fostered self-expression through painting workshops in ten countries. Started at the Lower East Side Girls Club, by its founder, NYC-based artist Nicolina, the HOTW team has partnered with schools, social service agencies and arts organizations to create life-altering workshops.

And a few scenes from the afternoon, where people were invited to paint what was in their hearts…

[Photo by LS]

[Photo by Chris Flash]

[The Human JukeBox Brass Band via CF]

[Project founder Nicolina Johnson via CF]

Previously on EV Grieve:
Hearts of the World returns to Tompkins Square Park tomorrow (Saturday!)

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Raul's Candy Store is red (again)

Just noting the new paint job from this past week over at Raul Candy Store, which has been at 205 Avenue B between East 12th Street and East 13th Street since 1981. (It opened on Avenue D in 1976.)

Here's a photo from late August…

… and from 2009…

Today in Eroto-Boutiques on East 7th Street

A longtime East Village resident is having her annual stoop sale today… via the EVG inbox…

I'm doing another old-fashioned, non-commercial mega stoop sale Saturday … real prices…

This one is a total clean out … there will also be music, women's clothing sizes 6-12, household items and more

MEGA STOOP SALE & Eroto-Boutique
Saturday Oct. 10, 9 – 5 PM
70 E. 7th St. between 1st Avenue and 2nd Avenue

Friday, October 9, 2015

Hearts of the World returns to Tompkins Square Park tomorrow (Saturday!)

Via the EVG inbox…

Join us this Saturday afternoon (tomorrow!) in Tompkins Square Park, have a seat at our 100-foot-long table and paint what's in your "heart" as part of the Hearts of the World project.

Bring your painting home with you or donate it to our worldwide exhibition tour. *All materials provided*

Great for kids, adults and everyone in between.
The Human JukeBox Brass Band is playing music all afternoon. The Lower Eastside Girl's Club will be making FREE silkscreen prints. (Bring a t-shirt, tote bag, etc...)

Tompkins Square Park, Center Circle
Saturday, Oct. 10, 1-5 pm, *FREE*
(Rain date Sunday, Oct. 11)

Find more info on the Facebook events page here.

'Thigh' masters

There are like 5000000000000000 bands playing the annual CMJ Music Marathon next week.

Here is one of the groups — Heaters with "Levitate Thigh." The Michigan-based trio will be at Elvis Guesthouse on Avenue A Tuesday evening.

The 6&B Harvest Fest is tomorrow (Saturday)

Rescheduled from last Saturday's rainout ... now 2-7 p.m. tomorrow.

The garden entrance on Avenue B between East Sixth Street and East Fifth Street.

Check out the lengthy list of local merchants who donated the raffle prizes here.

EV Grieve Etc.: An Other Music appreciation; an update on Metrograph Cinema

[Photo on 2nd Avenue Wednesday by Derek Berg]

Update on the Metrograph Cinema, coming in early 2016 to Ludlow Street (BoweryBoogie)

City to spend $1 million on ads promoting rent freeze on stabilized units (The New York Times)

City renovating two former East Village squats (The Villager)

Praise for Bruno Pizza on East 13th Street (Gothamist)

More on building a mesh network in the neighborhood (New York Business Journal)

An appreciation for Other Music on East Fourth Street (Flaming Pablum)

Now on display at the Dorian Grey Gallery on East Ninth Street: Paul Benney-Louis Renzoni with Ecliptic (Dorian Grey Gallery)

More about The Garret Bar, which recently opened on Avenue A (WWD)

Live music at the Hester Fair tomorrow (The Lo-Down)

NYU students say university hasn't been paying student employees (The Village Voice)

Coming Oct. 17: A John Zorn benefit concert as part of a Harry Smith celebration (Anthology Film Archives)

RIP Chantal Akerman, director of the great NYC film "News From Home" (Dangerous Minds)

McNally Jackson Books is opening a location with cafe at the South Street Seaport (DNAinfo)

Pizza Rat battle (Eater)

...and Ichimi Cosme, specializing in Japanese/Korean skincare products, has opened at 318 E. Ninth St. between First Avenue and Second Avenue...

[Photo by Steven]

... and a lunchtime photo from Tompkins Square Park yesterday by Bobby Williams...

49 years ago today, the Hare Krishna movement started in Tompkins Square Park

Here's a little history courtesy of Off the Grid (via The New York Times):

In 1965, after a difficult month on a steamship, a spiritual leader named Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada arrived in New York convinced that if Americans would embrace his conception of Krishna consciousness, the other countries in the world would follow. In 1966 he founded the International Society of Krishna Consciousness at 26 Second Avenue, near 2nd Street.

On October 9, 1966, Swami Prabhupada led a group of followers to the nearby Tompkins Square Park. Under the leafy canopy of an American elm tree they began to chant a distinctive 16-word mantra: ”Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.” It was Swami Prabhupada’s first outdoor chanting ceremony outside of India and it was the birth of the Hare Krishna religion.

Read more of the tree's history here.

EVG correspondent Steven took the above photo this morning of Vani, who was here to mark the anniversary.

Report: Ben Shaoul replacing luxury rentals with condos at Bloom 62

Word is that Stately Shaoul Manor — aka the rental Bloom 62 — is about to go condo.

The Real Deal has the scoop on developer Ben Shaoul's plans for the building on Avenue B at East Fifth Street:

Shaoul, president of Magnum Real Estate Group, filed plans for an 81-unit condominium that will have a total sellout of $95.2 million, according to a summary of the offering plan filed with the state Attorney General’s office ...

Back in March, we reported that Shaoul put Bloom 62 on the market … with an $80 million asking price for the former Cabrini Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation. However, after curtailing the building's rooftop ragers, Shaoul pulled Bloom off the market.

Units at Bloom currently range from a one-bedroom apartment for $3,300 all the way up to a four-bedroomer for $7,395, per Streeteasy. The listed building amenities mention the roof deck with outdoor shower (drat!), a fully equipped gym, yoga room and storage units.

Before becoming a luxury rental, the building was home to Cabrini, which closed for good on June 30, 2012. The 240-bed center — sponsored by the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus — provided health care for low-income elderly residents in the East Village. Cabrini opened in 1993 and served 240 patients and employed nearly 300 people. Shaoul reportedly paid $25 million for the property and closed down Cabrini.

Bloom 62 will join Shaoul's other East Village condos — the A Building on East 13th Street and the incoming 98-100 Avenue A.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Claim: Ben Shaoul is the new owner of Cabrini nursing home, will convert to condos

Report: Local politicians reach out to Ben Shaoul as re-sale of the Cabrini Nursing Center seems likely

More details on Cabrini's closing announcement

A look at the 'Hip young crowd planting roots at Bloom 62'

Ben Shaoul looks to make a whole lot of money converting nursing home into high-end housing

Ben Shaoul is selling Bloom 62 for $73 million — all cash!

Indian-speciality movie rental shop closes on East 6th Street

[EVG file photo]

The rental shop that specialized in Indian music and Bollywood cinema has closed at 245 E. Sixth St. between First Avenue and Second Avenue.

EVG reader Michael Hirsch hears that the 12-year-old shop was unable to remain open after a rent increase. (Neighbor Gandhi also closed due to a reported rent hike.)

This is also the last retail space that rented films in the East Village.

[Updated] 4 bedroom rentals arrive at 329 E. 10th St.

The renovations are apparently winding down at 329 E. 10th St. between Avenue A and Avenue B. The first units from the Icon Realty-owned building recently arrived on Streeteasy.

For now there are two, four-bedroom units for rent ($8,500 a month), according to Streeteasy.

Here is the listing for the units: "All apartments are newly renovated featuring: bleached-plank hardwood floors, recessed lighting, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, cherry wood cabinets, crown and baseboard moldings, with marble bathrooms."

There is also a large private patio, per the listings.

However, there isn't any mention of a roof deck (a popular amenity in Icon-owned buildings)… which was in view from the street ...

[Photo from July via JL]

And here's how the new deck was looking from the rear…

[Photos from July via Gojira]

The building, which sits in the East Village/Lower East Side Historic District, needs approval from the Landmarks Preservation Commission for the rooftop addition. It does not appear that any approval was ever received for the roof deck.

DOB records show that someone filed a complaint about the rooftop on June 30. An inspector made an attempt to access the building without success then on Set. 5 and Sept. 12. With no response to the buzzer, the DOB issued an LS-4 — a letter to the landlord asking to schedule an inspection.

Icon picked up the building for $5.2 million in August 2013.

Updated 9:54 a.m.

A neighbor sent along a few better shots showing the roof deck...

...which kind of looks like a cattle stockade from this angle...

Updated 10:39 a.m.

Per another reader...

Actually the deck is no longer visible from street level. They took down the southern fence, receded it by about 5 feet, and put in a shorter fence. Not sure if that brought them into compliance but that is what they did. The marble floor still extends nearly to the roottop edge.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

A family continues to feel the loss on 2nd Avenue

The following is from photographers James and Karla Murray today...

Nicholas Figueroa's father tends to his son's memorial at 121 Second Ave., the site of the March 26 gas explosion and fire that killed his son.

His mother talked to us about the loss of their 23-year-old son and how hard it has been coping with it.

Today, his father placed a statue of Mary and keepsake box at the memorial and also tended to the memorial for the other victim, Moises Ismael Locón Yac.

Mrs. Figueroa gave her OK to post the above photo because she doesn't want anyone to forget the tragedy. Per the Murrays: "Their feelings of anger and loss are still understandably very raw and intense."

[Updated] Report: Black Seed bagels opens Monday on 1st Avenue

[Photo yesterday by Steven]

Zagat is reporting that Black Seed bagels will be opening on Monday at 176 First Ave. between East 10th Street and East 11th Street...

Workers have been renovating the former DeRobertis space these past seven months. Zagat also has the first photos of the renovated interior...

Per Zagat: "[R]estored original details include the tin ceiling, penny tiled floor, neon sign and tile walls, accented with the same turquoise high-top chairs used at [Black Seed's] Elizabeth Street location."

Aside from a variety of bagel sandwiches, Black Seed will reportedly be selling sides like chilled borscht soup and wood-roasted potato salad. They will also be serving pastries such as rugalach and rainbow cookies.

No word yet on hours. The Elizabeth Street location is open daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Updated 10-9

Eater has a preview here with lots more photos. They say that BS will be open in the middle of next week. And Grub Street has a preview here. (GS says they will be open on Monday.)

And here is the menu (PDF!) via GS…

[Click to go big]

Previously on EV Grieve:
Black Seed bringing bagels to the former DeRobertis space on 1st Avenue (43 comments)

Black Seed owners reiterate commitment to preserving the former DeRobertis space