Staff has been telling patrons that Cafe Pick Me Up will close for good at the end of this month.
The 20-year-old cafe on Avenue A at East Ninth Street has been rumored to be closing now for months. However, in March, DNAinfo reported that the owners would vacate the corner space and move into its smaller storefront they use for a dining room next door. However, as we're told, that's no longer happening.
Cafe manager Rossella Palazzo told DNAinfo in March that a rent hike from landlord Icon Realty is the reason for the closure.
“I don’t know who can afford that much rent,” she said, declining to say how much the landlord charged. “I know it’s a nice location on the corner but it’s way too much for what they’re asking.”
Icon is currently listing the storefront… asking $15,000 a month for the space, which includes 600 square feet on the ground floor and 724 square feet in the basement.
One tipster told us that the staff wanted to buy the space from the cafe's owners, though that never materialized.
Icon Realty bought the building at 145 Avenue A for $10.1 million in April 2014, according to public records.
Updated 9:23 p.m.
Earlier today, Gothamist heard from a Cafe Pick Me Up assistant manager that:
… the cafe will live on in some form down the street at Gnocco, an Italian eatery [on East 10th Street near Avenue B] owned by the same people. "We're moving June 3rd," Kristen told us. "We're still going to have our breakfast and some of our staff moved. They're usually just doing dinner, but now we're going to be serving breakfast, lunch, brunch and dinner, cocktails. We're going to expand a little as well."
Previously on EV Grieve:
Rent hike forcing Cafe Pick Me Up into its smaller space next door on Avenue A (59 comments)