[Nomad photo from June by Stacie Joy]
ICYMI: The Times had a sobering piece Wednesday titled "9 of Every 10 Restaurants and Bars in NYC Can't Pay Full Rent."
Mehenni Zebentout, the owner of Nomad at 78 Second Ave. between Fourth Street and Fifth Street is predominately featured.
Nomad, a North African and Mediterranean restaurant in the East Village, shut down in March after the pandemic engulfed New York City, leaving its owner unable to pay the full $11,500 rent for months.After opening for outdoor dining in June, the owner, Mehenni Zebentout, has struggled to pay 70 to 80 percent of the rent. But he had to cut his staff from nine full-time employees to four part-time workers. And his landlord still wants Mr. Zebentout to pay what he owes from the spring.
"We're just hoping for some miracle," he said. "I believe, according to my experience, two out of three restaurants will close by December, and I'll be one of them if there's no help from the city or the government."
Let’s just face up to it, we serve the landlords. And they don’t care what happens to any tenant, their only objective is to keep the rents high for a potential flip of the property. Providing a service isn’t important.
What do we do ? What should we champion? Should we support an aggressive reopening plan for those who feel comfortable? Do we demand more rent relief for our businesses? Will this finally trigger a rent reform to fill our neighborhood with restaurants and retailers? (Hands in the air yelling at cloud)
It kills me to walk the streets and see the inevitable. Some places with outdoor seating may actually survive, but it's really like watching the final hurrah. As soon as the cold weather sets in, we'll see the majority of businesses close. It's shameful there is no relief for businesses from the state or feds. We (regular people) are expected to bear the burden of keeping the city afloat, but it's just not possible. Too many people are unemployed, evictions are just on hold for a while, and those with jobs likely don't have security that there won't be layoffs. Something has to give.
don't think---bailing out restaurant owners (and by default GREEDY landlords is the answer)---a comprehensive LONG TERM (vaccine/official end of pandemic) that targets the 20,000,000 unemployed may be a better plan :)
On the positive side, I rode by Nomad this evening and his tables were jam packed, even with extra tables going down the sidewalk. I hope this helps to jump start some good fortune.
Unfortunately, a major correction is warranted. The city must offer the businesses relief. And the landlords, well we know where they can go!
No, money is to be shared. It is that simple. Share the wealth with those in need.
It looks like Nomad is now closed. Is this true? This was a really great little restaurant - wonderful food, great staff, music and just an overall good vibe. We've lost one of the good ones.
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