Monday, February 29, 2016

The 100-foot journey

East Village resident Helen Mirren had a short commute to work today... traveling to Second Avenue to film a scene (no fake snow today!) for "Collateral Beauty" (here with Michael Peña) ...

The dramatic comedy via Warner Bros., due in theaters on Dec. 16, also stars Will Smith, Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley, Naomie Harris and Edward Norton.

Photos today by EVG Helen Mirren correspondent Derek Berg.

BluDog10003 leaving his mark on 2nd Avenue and East Houston

NYC-based artist BluDog10003 has been creating a new work on the mural wall outside the Second Avenue F stop at East Houston... EVG regular Lola Sáenz shared the above photo showing the progress.

You can keep tabs via @bludog10003

Report: Developers buy former LES nursing facility for luxury housing

Developers have purchased 45 Rivington St., the former Rivington Center for Nursing & Rehabilitation, for $116 million. Their plan? Luxury housing, as The Wall Street Journal first reported.

Here's more from The Lo-Down, who has been following the saga:
[T]he sale was anticipated after the Allure Group, a private nursing home operator, closed the building in December. The company, which purchased the property last year for $28 million, has stated that the failure to obtain state Medicaid reimbursements forced the closure. The Allure Group also paid the city $16 million for the deed, which had previously restricted the building’s use to a “Not-for-Profit Residential Health Care Facility.”

Community Board 3 and City Council member Margaret Chin supported efforts to lift the deed restriction because they thought it meant the 200-plus-bed nursing facility could continue to operate as a for-profit entity. They were furious with the de Blasio Administration for allowing the building to slip into the hands of luxury housing developers.

A rep for the developers told the Journal that they plan to house upwards of 100 luxury units in the building, which overlooks Sara D. Roosevelt Park. (You can read more about the deal at BoweryBoogie.)

Late last year, an EVG reader, who had been a patient at the facility, heard the news from staffers about the impending closure of the building between Eldridge and Forsyth ...

Said the reader:

"The building is incredible with 12-foot ceilings and a penthouse floor that has a view from the UN to all of Midtown and Downtown. I knew it was doomed to have developers all over it from the first day I got there."

See you on East 7th Street

[Photo from September by Fenton Lawless]

As you probably know, Trash and Vaudeville closed yesterday after 41 years at 4 St. Mark's Place ... to start packing up to move to a new space at 96 E. Seventh St. between Avenue A and First Avenue.

[EVG photo of 96 E. 7th St. from yesterday]

And this photo on East Seventh Street from last July by @chardog1 provided a sneak preview of what's to come...

An article published Friday on the Vogue website had a few details on the new store:

As on St. Marks, both Trash and Vaudeville will continue to exist on two levels. At the Seventh Street digs, they’ll be connected via an internal staircase, and those in the market for towering T.U.K. platform creepers can take comfort in the fact that the storied shoe department will still be housed on the lower level.

And here's an excerpt from our conversation with store owner Ray Goodman from July:

"I love St. Mark's Place. There's no doubt it. There's something magical about it. This just isn't any block," Goodman told us on the phone. "The decision wasn't something that I took lightly. From a business perspective, we saw a shift in the clientele. The block is not as conducive for fashion shopping as it once was. Now it seems as if it's all food — fast food — and bongs. Even stores that aren't bong stores sell bongs."

He said that the changing business environment on the block between Second Avenue and Third Avenue was just one of many factors that played into the decision to relocate.

"The retail world is so different today," he said. "So much of it is done online."

And increasing rents are always a culprit.

"The rent is creeping up," said Goodman, who is a minority partner in the ownership of the historic Hamilton-Holly House at 4 St. Mark's Place. "Rent was a factor, but it wasn't the sole reason."

In a piece on the closing today, The New York Times noted that the rent had risen to $45,000. (That will require a lot of sales of water pipes, ramen or bubble tea...items that a likely new tenant might sell.)

Last November, 4 St. Mark's Place, the landmarked building whose first owner in 1833 was Alexander Hamilton’s son, arrived on the market. Asking price: $11.9 million.

In the past few days, several people on social media said that they'd miss the site of longtime store manager Jimmy Webb on a smoking break outside the shop...

[Photo by James Maher from 2013]

[Photo by James Maher from 2014]

In closing, a passage from that Vogue piece by Kristin Anderson:

While passersby may not ever again know the pleasure of seeing the store’s most famous employee, Jimmy Webb, lounging on those steps ... he’ll continue his reign when Goodman and co. open their doors in the new space ...

The new location is expected to be open some time in March.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Exclusive: After 40 years, punk rock mainstay Trash and Vaudeville is leaving St. Mark's Place

The former Russian Souvenirs will become a coffee shop on East 14th Store

The plywood arrived last week outside the former Russian Souvenirs shop on East 14th Street between Second Avenue and Third Avenue.

The work permits say that a coffee shop is in the works...

Unfortunately, there isn't any other information at the moment about who the tenant will be.

Curious what will become of the former signage. I always liked this one. (Maybe it will become the Russian Souvenirs Coffee Shop? Ha.)

The shop specializing in (Russian, duh) tchotchkes closed last July. The proprietor said that his rent had increased.

Previously on EV Grieve:
[Updated] Russian Souvenirs is no more on East 14th Street

Tacos in the works for East 2nd Street

A sign for Guaco Taco — in two varieties of green — arrived the other day outside 91 E. Second St. between First Avenue and Avenue A. Don't know a thing about the place at the moment. We'll check back in on the place with some details...

On the topic of tacos on East Second Street between First Avenue and Avenue A, the Taco Morelos cart has been back in action in its usual location ...

The cart had been replaced by a Taco Morelos truck during some recent cold weather... and then neither were there for several days, prompting a few concerned questions from readers...

You will soon be able to get sugared and bronzed on 4th Avenue

Heesoo Beauty closed last summer at 114 Fourth Ave. at East 12th Street... and EVG reader JBA provides photographic evidence of the new tenant: a branch of the Southern California-based Sugared+Bronzed salon.

Several readers have already asked about the sugaring pricing ... (Sugaring being the Egyptian art where a water-soluble sugar paste is used to extract unwanted hairs, as you likely already knew) ... so via the S+B website...

[Click to go bigger]

The portion only goes up to ladle. So if you want the shovel, then you are on your own.

Anyway, this location marks the first in NYC for Sugared+Bronzed.

How about a new smoke shop for East Houston

Coming soon signage is up at 279 E. Houston between Clinton and Suffolk...

This smoke shop will sell a little something for everyone vaporizers, E-juices, tobacco, grinders, cigars, soda and beer, per the sign...

The storefront was previously home to the boutique A Little Wicked. As BoweryBoogie noted in May 2014, the proprietors behind the now-shuttered Scarab Lounge on First Avenue wanted to open something called Zu Zu Lounge Hookah Bar in the space. That never happened.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

That kind of day

[1st Avenue]

People singing and dancing in the streets or on the sidewalks...

[2nd Avenue]

[The Bowery]

Photos today by Derek Berg

Week in Grieview

[Photo in Tompkins Square Park by Derek Berg]

Podunk, the tearoom on East Fifth Street, is moving after Mother's Day (Thursday)

54 Second Ave. sells for $7 million (Friday)

Former Sock Man space for rent on St. Mark's Place; presented as a "vanilla box" (Tuesday)

Four-building portfolio on St. Mark's Place in closing for $44 million (Wednesday)

Icon Realty files permits to demolish the former Chase branch on Second Avenue and St. Mark's Place (Thursday)

More about the underage drinking bust at Dahlia's; plus, reaction from NYU students (Wednesday)

Incoming Bagel Belly now with Bagel Belly signage (Monday)

Out and About (part 2) with Rafael Hines (Wednesday)

Construction watch: 64 E. First St., paying homage to the Williamsburg and Manhattan Bridges (Tuesday)

The Shape of Lies goes on hiatus on East Seventh Street (Monday)

Report: Crime is down so far in the East Village in 2016 (Friday)

Superiority Burger is now open for lunch (except on Tuesdays, when they are not open at all) (Wednesday)

Christo and Dora have been busy [blanking] in Tompkins Square Park (Monday)

Selling off Nino's (Monday)

When it fake snowed on East Fourth Street (Friday)

Chopt opens at 51 Astor Place (Monday) ... and a Flywheel Sports reveal (Tuesday)

Nine-story office building for sliver of space on Lafayette and Great Jones (Monday)

About "Gay Arms," a new photo exhibition by Grant Shaffer (Thursday)

The fallout from a fight involving Nate "Skate" Maloley and Derek Luh, fans and security at Webster Hall (Sunday)

Gutting some Third Avenue storefronts (Tuesday)

Minca Ramen back in action (Thursday)

Daniel Delaney has new restaurant in the works for First Avenue (Friday)

Chest of Pleasure has closed on St. Mark's Place (Tuesday)

So, what you are trying to tell me, is that one can't use cash? (Tuesday)

100 Avenue A announces its incoming sales office with familiar naked, graffitied person motif (Friday)

... and it's nice out... grab your Hula Hoop and head outdoors...

[Photo on 1st Avenue by Derek Berg]


Today is the last day for three longtime businesses... two are permanent closures and one is a closure ahead of a relocation...

[EVG photo from last week]

Patricia Field is retiring from the boutique business after 50 years. She started in the West Village in 1966, and has been at 306 Bowery the last few years. This store closes today. Field has said that she is now going to concentrate on her film and TV work.

The 306 storefront is for lease.


Today is also the last day for St. Mark's Bookshop at 136 E. Third St. between Avenue A and First Avenue. Any remaining books and magazines are going for $2. This is the shop's fourth location since opening on St. Mark's Place in 1977.

Ada Calhoun's piece published at The New Yorker on Feb. 12 titled "What went wrong at St. Mark's Bookshop" gives you the background about what happened here.


And as we first reported last summer, Trash and Vaudeville is leaving its home of 41 years at 4 St. Mark's Place ... for a new space at 96 E. Seventh St. between Avenue A and First Avenue.

Strong start for sinkhole season; more pylons on the way

This one is developing quickly on Avenue A at East Third Street... Also: pylon down. Repeat, pylon down.

Anyway, not to play favorites, but I think I prefer the sinkhole that's on First Avenue and Seventh Street a little more. For starters, that one has better effects, like smoke/steam/CHUD.

H/T ‏@thee_thomtobias

Holiday/xmas tree reminders on this Feb. 28th

[EVG photo from this morning]

For some strange reason, people continue to bring their holiday/Christmas trees to be trecycled in the middle of Tompkins Square Park. (Why is this strange? Because it's only Feb. 28. You have a few more months to enjoy the trees.)

Anyway, something to keep in mind if you are going to dispose of your tree today. You won't need to quietly chuck it on First Avenue at East Fifth Street ...

[Photo this morning by EVG reader Steph]

Or leave it by the former Mobil station lot on Avenue C and East Houston/Second Street...

[EVG photo from this morning]

Though you have to admit the addition of the tree brings out the lot's natural beauty.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

So long giant underwater photo of a jellyfish and model

EVG reader Ronnie noted the arrival yesterday of a new banner/billboard/whateveryoucallthis at the long-empty corner space on Fourth Avenue and East 10th Street...

Anyone know what this is promoting?

It replaces the one with model-photographer Amber Arbucci and the jellyfish that had been up here since May 2014...

[EVG photo from May 2014]

Soon, this corner will no longer be able to house giant photos of jellyfish and models and whatever else with the 10-story condoplex in the works.

Updated 1:30 p.m.

Thanks to commenter James S. ... this is a painting by Nick Walker titled "The Brooklyn Morning After."

Previously on EV Grieve:
Report: Demo permits filed to raze southeast corner of 4th Avenue and 10th Street

Today in temporary store closures

On Second Avenue at St. Mark's the Verizon shop...

Appreciate the transparency.

I have no idea when the Verizon shop closed... or why these barrels have been out here for the past few weeks...

Friday, February 26, 2016

Days of Whine and the Stone Roses

Britpop vets The Stone Roses are back together and playing their first NYC show in 21 years this June 30 at Madison Square Garden. Tickets went on sale today.

Here's the band lip-synching live on Top of the Pops in 1990 with "Fools Gold."

Let It Fake Snow! Let It Fake Snow! Let It Fake Snow!

Fake Snow Warning in effect for East Fourth Street between Second Avenue and the Bowery today... while crews are filming the movie "Collateral Beauty," starring Will Smith, Kate Winslet, Keira Knightley and Edward Norton.

Photo by Derek Berg

EV Grieve Etc.: Best coffee listicle; CineKink NYC schedule

[Randomly, East 10th Street the other morning]

City Council introduces nine bills to tighten gas safety rules after deadly explosions (Daily News)

The 13th annual edition of CineKink NYC starts next week at the Anthology Film Archives (Official site)

Factoids about St. Mark's Bookshop, which is closing for good on Sunday (The Observer)

Man kills himself at the Third Avenue L stop (DNAinfo)

Kossar's: Still got it (Tablet)

East Village well-represented in list of best NYC coffee shops (Grub Street)

Left Banks Books is closing in Greenwich Village (Jeremiah's Vanishing New York)

Love making and nest building in Tompkins Square Park (Laura Goggin Photography — nesting and blanking)

The ever-changing Clinton Street (The Lo-Down)

You have a few more days to check out Marcia Resnick's photo exhibition "Poets, Punks and Provocateurs: New York City Bad Boys 1977-1982" on East First Street (Howl! Happening)

Shocker! Cronyism detected in race for Sheldon Silver's seat (WNYC)

Black Crescent reopening 1 year after fire on Clinton Street (BoweryBoogie)

69 Bayard Restaurant closes for good in Chinatown tomorrow (DNAinfo)

When Debbie Harry wanted to remake Godard's "Alphaville" (Dangerous Minds)

An illustrative 315 Bowery now and then (Harper's ... H/T Alex!)

At the screening for "Candy Apple" at Cinema Village (Slum Goddess)

Using public Wi-Fi is like posting on a Times Square billboard (USA Today)

Remembering NYC band Motherhead Bug (Flaming Pablum)

54 2nd Ave. has been sold

The four-story building on the northeast corner of Second Avenue and Third Street has been sold.

According to Kevin Darouvar, sales and acquisitions at the Living Real Estate Group, Dalan Management bought the building for $7 million from the family who has owned it since 1976.

In its current configuration, there are two living spaces: one on the second floor with a 2,600-square-foot duplex on the third and fourth levels. Darouvar said that Dalan planned to offer the units as rentals.

The Bean, the building's retail tenant, has a lease on the space through 2026. The coffee shop opened here in December 2011.

Some readers may recall several years ago when the retail space was vacant... and the Crazy Landlord just had to rent this space...

[Photo from March 2011 by Salim]

Previously on EV Grieve:
RIP Crazy Landlord sign

'Crazy Landlord' back to being crazy!

100 Avenue A announces its incoming sales office with familiar naked, graffitied person motif

[Photo from November]

Back in November, we told you that the vacant storefront at 115 Avenue A near East Seventh Street will serve as a sales office for Ben Shaoul's 100 Avenue A.

On Wednesday, the familiar marketing motif of the graffitied naked people arrived on the door...

Yesterday morning, the banner attracted the attention of two men who had been camped by the chess tables across the street in Tompkins Square Park...

As previously noted, the residences between East Sixth Street and East Seventh Street at the new 6-story 8-story building will start at $1.3 million.

The last tenant at No. 115, the gift shop Alphabets, closed here in in February 2014, merging with their newly opened location at 64 Avenue A between East Fifth Street and East Fourth Street.

Previously on EV Grieve:
The retail space at Ben Shaoul's 100 Avenue A is available for $24.5 million; plus, naked model marketing clarification!

Trying to figure out what is going on at 98-100 Avenue A

Part of the former Alphabets storefront will serve as sales office for Ben Shaoul's 100 Avenue A

Someone threw black paint bombs at the naked women condo ad along 100 Avenue A

Take a look at the inside of Ben Shaoul's condos at 100 Avenue A

[Updated] Daniel Delaney planning new restaurant for 1st Avenue

[EVG photo from July 2015]

Looks as if the East Village will have another fried chicken option.

According to CB3's agenda for March, an entity going by Delaney Chicken Union Square LLC will appear before the SLA committee for a liquor license at 167 First Ave. between East 10th Street and East 11th Street.

The name of restaurateur Daniel Delaney (who also operates BrisketTown out in Williamsburg) is on the public notice form (PDF) posted on the CB3 website.

Last September, he opened Delaney Chicken in the UrbanSpace Vanderbilt market in Midtown. He told Eater last summer "that his fried chicken is 'very different' from the other popular versions around town as it is batter dipped, rather than being dredged in seasoned flour. He promises a unique texture in the coating which comes spiked with the requisite secret seasonings."

There isn't any other information posted to the CB3 website at the moment about the First Avenue Delaney Chicken, such as its operating hours. CB3's SLA committee meeting is March 14 at 6:30 p.m. in the CB3 office, 59 E. Fourth St. between Second Avenue and the Bowery.

Seems to be a pretty crowded market already around the neighborhood for fried chicken. For starters, this location is one storefront away from Fuku, David Chang's popular fried chicken sandwich place. And there are places like Bobwhite on Avenue C, Root & Bone on East Third Street, Blue Ribbon on East First Street and Second Avenue, The Redhead on East 13th Street, just a name a few, that have a fried chicken following.

The previous tenant here at 167 First Ave., Ashiya Sushi, relocated to West 36th Street last summer.

Updated 1:30

Delaney tells Eater that the space is not guaranteed to be an outpost of his UrbanSpace Vanderbilt stall Delaney Chicken. "We are exploring a number of options, including getting a liquor license in that space, but we have not signed a lease," he says. (And we changed our original headline to reflect this.)

Report: Crime is down so far in the East Village in 2016

[Photo from Feb. 3 by Derek Berg]

The Villager attended the most recent Ninth Precinct Community Council meeting ... and here's the takeaway, per the paper:

The precinct’s crime rate is down 27 percent over all for the month. Specifically, robberies are down 57 percent, felony assaults are down 46 percent, burglaries are down 25 percent, and grand larceny is down 24 percent. The only spike, said Venice, was stolen vehicles — five this month, compared with only one during the previous month. The precinct’s crime rate is down 5 percent over all for the year.

Most of the crimes in the precinct have been grand larceny — the result of people leaving their property (often credit cards) somewhere and it being stolen.

Meanwhile, the NYPD announced earlier this week the launch of CompStat 2.0, "a newly public, online version of the data tool that the department has used since 1990 to map crime statistics by precinct," per Gothamist.

Play with the map yourself here.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Minca Ramen back in action

The popular ramen shop on East Fifth Street just west of Avenue B had been closed for more than two months due to some unspecified gas-related issue.

But they were back open earlier today. The sign that arrived on the door last week noted they'd return Wednesday, Feb. 25, which caused a little confusion. Wednesday the 24th or Thursday the 25th? Turned out to be the 25th.

Per an EVG reader via email: "What could be better on a cold, blustery day than spicy basic ramen. A perfect day for Minca to come back to life. Was like a reunion with folks coming by for a bowl and good cheer."

About 'Gay Arms,' a new photo exhibition by Grant Shaffer

East Village resident Grant Shaffer, a frequent contributor to EVG, is having a photo exhibition starting tomorrow evening.

Here are some details:

For the exhibition, "Gay Arms," Grant Shaffer presents a body of nearly 100 new photographic works. The series is documentary in style, with its subjects pulled from the artist's life.

Shaffer describes his artistic process as a means of understanding: "When I'm taking pictures, I think of myself as an alien who's here for a while, trying to understand the experience of my sliver of life on this planet. It's hard to say what my photos and this show are about. It's just intuitive. It's me trying to take in the world and asking people to notice or consider something."

La MaMa Galleria
47 Great Jones St.
(between Lafayette and the Bowery)

The show runs from Feb. 26 through March 13. The opening is tomorrow (Friday!) night from 6-9.

And here's one of my favorite photos of Shaffer's that I posted at EVG... from Tompkins Square Park in January 2014...

Thursday flashback (#tbt): To 7:30 a.m. today when the sun was out

Since then, a tipster told us that it got a little more cloudy.

Photo today by Bobby Williams