Showing posts with label smoke shop. Show all posts
Showing posts with label smoke shop. Show all posts

Friday, August 25, 2023


Photo by Steven

Well then!
Signage went up yesterday at 32 St. Mark's Place for a new business called Qik N E Z Convenience here between Second Avenue and Third Avenue. 

Given the Weed Greens Color Scheme palette — North Texas Green (#059033), Dollar Bill (#93CB56), Palm Leaf (#7BAA47) and Mughal Green (#355A20) — we're going with a cannabis-related business for the storefront. 

Or maybe one that just sells smoking accessories and exotic snacks. 

Smoke shops pop up faster than they get busted or go out of business. (There are two other new smoke shops that we haven't even mentioned yet.) 

A new city law recently went into effect that holds commercial landlords responsible for renting storefronts to unlicensed cannabis shops. Introduction 1001-B, known as Local Law 107 of 2023, prohibits owners of commercial spaces from knowingly leasing to unlicensed sellers of marijuana or tobacco products, imposing fines of up to $10,000 on landlords for violations. 

This small storefront was most recently Suki Japanese Kitchen, which closed earlier in the summer.

Friday, August 4, 2023

Like a breath of fresh Urban Air on 1st Avenue

Photo by Steven

The former Beer & Smoke Shop at 149 First Ave. at Ninth Street has been undergoing a transformation in the last week... and the new signage arrived yesterday for Urban Air Convenience (or maybe UrbanAir Convenience).

Given the sign's smoke motif... and the smoke emanating from the disembodied lips, this is likely a smoke shop ... and not, say, a convenience store selling Air Jordans or fresh urban air for those wildfire days.

The storefront was previously the Hague Convenience Store for several years... (and before, something useful like a tailor's shop). 

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

Say high to the latest retail tenant at this 2nd Avenue storefront

Signage is up now for the new tenant at 97 Second Ave. — Hi Society, a cannabis shop. (And why not High Society? There is already an online weed delivery service by that name in NYC.) 
The arrival comes as New York State started taking new measures to crack down on unlicensed cannabis shops last month ... with the Office of Cannabis Management able to fine the establishments $10,000 per day; $20,000 if sales persist. 

There are at least four regulated, licensed dispensaries in the immediate area. 

The address here between Fifth Street and Sixth Street was the laundromat Launderette for years until 2014. Recent ventures include several hot pot restaurants... and a pick-up spot for the grocery delivery company Getir.

Top photo by Steven; second shot by Derek Berg

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Is this the skinniest smoke shop in NYC?

This sliver of a smoke shop opened last week on Third Avenue between 12th Street and 13th Street... with about a foot-wide doorway wedged between Cutlets and Makari Japanese Antiques and Fine Art ...
As far as we can recall, this was a doorway into the building at 97 Third Ave. (There's another larger entrance a few steps to the south.) Anyway, here's an evening view (thanks, Jodi!) ...
This is the latest unlicensed shop to arrive in the neighborhood... Village Happy House Convenience opened last week at 127 Second Ave. between Seventh Street and St. Mark's Place (thanks, Steven!) ...
... and in a smoke-shop switcheroo, the signage for the coming-soon Deli Convenience now reads Dispensary (with marijuana leaves) on the west side of First Avenue between 13th Street and 14th Street where Tony's Famous Pizza used to be (and RIP Vinny Vincenz) (Thanks, Pinch!) ...

Monday, February 27, 2023

Noted (again)

Top photo by Concerned Citizen; 2nd pic by Stacie Joy 

Over the weekend, a smoke shop debuted at 199 E. Third St. just west of Avenue B... (not sure of the name, maybe Grand Opening? JK!

So this block now has a place for the usual variety of edibles, exotic snacks, etc. Not to mention festive balloonage for the debut...
This space was New Swan Cleaners until March 2022 ... the lease was up, and the owner decided to retire.

Thursday, February 23, 2023


It looks like the latest unlicensed weed shop is going by Green Dispensary here on the SE corner of First Avenue and 10th Street. (Thanks to Steven for the photo!)

More retail spaces are arriving even as Mayor Adams and DA Bragg are cracking down on illegal storefront operations by targeting the landlords. 

The previous tenant on this corner, the E. 10th St. Finest Deli, closed in December 2020

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

The vacant storefront on this corner of 10th and 1st will be...

Photo by Dan Scheffey

In recent weeks, workers have been gut-renovating the vacant storefront on the SE corner of First Avenue and 10th Street.

And now, as if anyone will be surprised, it turns out that the new business will be a cannabis/CBD shop, another in the many that have popped up in the past year... and that is not legal.

Last week, Mayor Adams and DA Bragg started cracking down on illegal storefront operations by targeting the landlords. 

The city's third legal cannabis shop — aka Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary — opened on Monday at 62 E. 13th St. just west of Broadway. 

The previous tenant on this corner, the E. 10th St. Finest Deli, closed in December 2020

H/T Steven and Steven Walker, who also shared photos from this corner

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Report: Incoming legal cannabis dispensary drawing opposition on 3rd Street

Photo by Steven

One of the city's next legal cannabis dispensaries is opening in April at 3 E. Third St., just east of the Bowery.

According to published reports, the dispensary coming to the ground-floor retail of this newish condoplex is Gotham, whose license holder is the nonprofit Strive, which "provides job training and other services to the formerly incarcerated." The organization was founded in East Harlem in 1984. (Strive is one of eight nonprofits in the state to receive marijuana licenses this past November.) 

The location has reportedly drawn opposition from management at Project Renewal, which operates a men's shelter and an in-patient substance abuse treatment on the block. 

Per NY1:
"Our clients come and go from this program on a daily basis," said Gabriel Woodhouse, program director with Project Renewal. "It's literally within sight line. I mean, it's right across the street from the front door of our program."
Technically, the restaurant Gemma and the Bowery Hotel is directly across the street from 3 E. Third St.

In addition, Community Board 3 passed a resolution stating that it would only approve the license at a different location. (This CB3 decision is only advisory.)

In any event, Gotham's management team wasn't having any of this. Joanne Wilson, manager of the project, told NY1 that they are moving forward with plans to open this spring.

As NY1 points out, the dispensary is subject to strict state regulations with limited signage (unlike the garish illegal operations), and cannabis products won't be visible outside the store.
"There will not be smoke that's being pumped out on the street. There won't be music that's being pumped out in the street," Wilson said. "Yes, there will be people, and there will be people shopping. But it's not anything but just a store."
The Housing Works Cannabis Co. store — New York's first legal recreational marijuana market — opened to great fanfare and long lines on Dec. 29 on Broadway at Eighth Street in a former Gap retail space. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

The future of the unlicensed weed vendors

The Housing Works Cannabis Co. store — New York's first legal recreational marijuana market — opened to great fanfare and long lines this past Thursday on Broadway at Eighth Street in a former Gap retail space. 

So what might happen in the months ahead to the numerous unlicensed sellers who have popped up all over the East Village and every other city neighborhood? 

Curbed had a piece on this topic the other day titled: "The Weed Bodega Was Beautiful While It Lasted." 
[P]er New York's Office of Cannabis Management, the era of the weed bodega — the tacky, snack-filled corner-store purveyor, like the regular bodega's stoner cousin — is about to be over. Instead, the state's legal weed retailers will be subject to an extremely long list of regulations that includes rules on everything from location to security to aesthetics. 

The compliance requirements will undoubtedly be onerous and expensive for many of the operators vying for licenses, but the décor rules in particular seem designed to kill the gray-market upstarts that flooded the city in the beautiful, wild period between decriminalization and the rollout of official licenses. 

It's as if regulators walked into a humble weed bodega — Cloudy Vibez, Weed 4 U, Kannabis Korner — and banned everything they saw: "cartoons," "bubble-type or other cartoon-like font," "bright colors," "neon," the terms "candy" or "candies," "kandy" or "kandeez," and "symbols, images, characters, public figures, phrases, toys, or games" commonly marketed to people under 21. 

Also barred are signs or business names "depicting cannabis, cannabis products, or the imagery or action of smoking or vaping." As the city begins to enforce these rules in earnest, the welcoming visage of a rasta Alvin the Chipmunk will begin to disappear from our streetscape. 
Meanwhile, the city is cracking down on the illegal shops ... not to mention the sidewalk vendors, as seen on St. Mark's Place between Second Avenue and Third Avenue. 

This past Dec. 7, we received multiple EVG reader tips about busts underway at East Village shops (photo below by Derek Berg) ...
As Gothamist reported, the Sheriff's Interagency Enforcement Task Force has been cracking down on the shops citywide. 

Per the site: 
The task force is led by the sheriff's office — the enforcement arm of the city's Department of Finance — and also includes the police department, the Department of Consumer and Worker Protection, and the state Office of Cannabis Management.

Mayor Eric Adams announced the creation of the task force in mid-December. In a two-week span, officials said at the time, the task force had inspected 53 storefronts across the city and seized more than 100,000 illegal products worth about $4 million. Officials also issued 500 civil violations and 66 criminal summonses over that time, Sheriff Anthony Miranda said. All told, the city has conducted 248 store inspections, including 23 in December, through Dec. 29.
Another factor in the potential demise of the unlicensed shops: a survey (results here) conducted by the New York Medical Cannabis Industry Association found the presence of potentially deadly E. coli, salmonella and pesticides in many products from 20 unlicensed stores that publicly advertise selling marijuana, as Bloomberg reported

As the Post noted, the study also found that there are "likely tens of thousands of illicit cannabis businesses currently out of bodegas, smoke shops, or other retail locations" that are licensed to sell other products. 
So as the enforcement becomes stricter and the fines pile up, what will the owners of the unlicensed businesses do moving forward — especially if their shops, many looking like a set-piece from "Bullet Train," don't meet the state's requirements? What kind of empty storefront surplus might be upon us in the months ahead if smoke shops don't open in every vacant space?

Top photo from Dec. 29 by Steven

Monday, December 5, 2022

1st Avenue old-timer Royal Bangladesh Indian Restaurant is being replaced by — obviously — a smoke shop

There's a new era for 93 First Ave. just south of Sixth Street. 

A smoke shop is taking the storefront on the lower level, space that Royal Bangladesh Indian Restaurant had from 1978 to late this past spring. (We first reported on the closing here.) 

Smokers Basement (please leave your thoughts on apostrophes in the comments) is the latest entrant in an already-crowded smoke-related market. (Exotic snacks too, maybe?) It appears Smokers will only be leasing the spot on the left.

For decades, hosts from the three restaurants at the address — Royal Bangladesh, Milon and Panna II — theatrically tried to get passersby to eat in their establishment, insisting that their food is superior. 

Milon closed at the end of 2020. While the sign remains, Panna II serves from both upper-level dining rooms (adding more to the urban legend that the three restaurants shared a kitchen!). 

Given how quickly the tacky-looking smoke shops are opening, it wouldn't be inconceivable to have three weed-related businesses here shortly... with bud hosts out front saying that they have the best CBD flower.

Thanks to the EVG reader for this tip!

Friday, December 2, 2022

Holy smokes! 2 more unlicensed weed shops pop up in the East Village

Photos by Steven

Another day, another few smoke shops setting up for business in the East Village. 

Up top, we have Giggles Convenience (so many smoke shops, so few names left!), coming sooner than you think on First Avenue, just below Fourth Street. Signage includes a skeleton in a hat smoking from a bong.

And on Ninth Street between First Avenue and Second Avenue, Pride Smokes is offering "foreign snacks" and various items you can find in the other few dozen shops that have debuted of late...
Late last month, 28 individuals and businesses and eight nonprofits were designated Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary (CAURD) licenses by the state Office of Cannabis Management ... for a total of 36 licenses statewide, per published reports

The Times had a piece last week titled: "How New York City Became a Free-for-All of Unlicensed Weed."

The sleek dispensaries and tacky bodegas are part of an explosion of unlicensed cannabis shops that have opened in New York over the past year as part of a rush to cash in on the state's legalization of cannabis. Now on the eve of the launch of the state's legal market, the authorities face growing pressure to address the shops, which have created confusion among everyone from tourists to police officers. 
The Police Department explained in an email to The New York Times that, in its view, the legalization law does not give officers the authority to make seizures or arrests when they see cannabis displayed or to shut down unlicensed shops. "The law only provides an enforcement mechanism if an actual sale is observed," its public-information office said.

Meanwhile, a survey (results here) conducted by the New York Medical Cannabis Industry Association found the presence of potentially deadly E. coli, salmonella and pesticides in many products from 20 unlicensed stores that publicly advertise selling marijuana, as Bloomberg reported

As the Post noted, the study also found that there are "likely tens of thousands of illicit cannabis businesses currently out of bodegas, smoke shops, or other retail locations" that are licensed to sell other products. 

Monday, November 21, 2022

Where you'll be able to find the Goodies on the Bowery

Another day, another cannabis-related shop opening in the neighborhood. 

The Goodies Shop is the latest entry ... coming soon to 324 Bowery near Bleecker... signage arrived last week...
This piece from Fortune on Friday has more about the city's unlicensed shops popping up all over the place.

The Goodies Shop takes over the space from Snack Bowery, which closed late last year.

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

Noted, good-God-not-another-one edition

Coming soon, midblock to the north side of 10th Street between First Avenue and Second Avenue — Galactic Smokers. 

Thanks to Steven for the photo

Monday, November 14, 2022

Hey, what might be opening in this empty 1st Avenue storefront?

Coming soon signage is up for a SMOKE SHOP at 213 First Ave. between 12th Street and 13th Street. (Thanks to Pinch for the pic!) 

OK, what else is there to say? 

The smoke shop is taking over the storefront from Coddiwomple, the sandwich shop that opened and closed after a few weeks in business earlier this year.

Monday, September 19, 2022

1 guess on what is coming to this empty storefront on Avenue A and 13th Street

Activity, including the installation of glass cigar cases, continues inside the storefront on the SE corner of Avenue A and 13th Street... a worker on the scene said it will be a — SMOKE SHOP. 

The business is expected to be open in the next few weeks. Until then, you can try one of the other two dozen smoke shops in the neighborhood.

Back in May, the owners of Keybar on 13th Street between Avenue A and First Avenue were looking to relocate here, but the application didn't make it past Community Board 3.

Caffè Bene closed here in December after nearly six years in business... until 2014, the space was Kim's Laundromat & Cleaners for some 30 years. 

Thank you to EVG reader Erika for the photo and tip!

Thursday, September 1, 2022

East Village Exotics announces itself on Avenue B

Photos by Stacie Joy 

Signage went up yesterday for East Village Exotics on the SE corner of Avenue B and Fourth Street. 

The owners also run East Village Finest Deli right across B... (and they plan to keep both businesses). 

Aside from the usual smoke-shoppy stuff, there will be some corner-market offerings when EVE opens in the next 1-2 weeks...
The previous tenant here, Your Desire For Food, quietly closed in early 2021 after six months in operation ... in the storefront in one of the most colorful buildings around...

Monday, August 15, 2022

A smoke shop for this block of 4th Street

The Green Apple Smoke Shop is now open on Fourth Street just west of Avenue B... in a long vacant storefront (previous tenants, some years back, included a hair salon and psychic).

The local smoke shop openings seem to be averaging about 2-3 a month of late...

H/T Stacie Joy!

Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Puff & Puff Convenience debuts on Avenue C

The neighborhood's latest smoke shop is at 153 Avenue C... where Puff & Puff Convenience is now up and smoking running here between Ninth Street and 10th Street.

P&P takes the space over from F&M Slice Pizza, which shuttered in March 2021 after 10 years of budget slices.

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Wood you believe another smoke shop is opening

A business called Wood Vibez (!!!) is coming soon to 516 E. Sixth Street between Avenue A and Avenue B.

Given the water pipe on the signage, this is presumably another smoke shop... and not, say, a furniture store or woodworking shop or something related to the slang usage of wood. 😬

As you know, smoke shops have been popping up all over the neighborhood in recent weeks, though not on this block. 

Monday, June 6, 2022

New smoke shop called Smoke Shop debuts on 3rd Avenue

If there's an empty storefront, then there's a smoke shop just waiting to open... And over on Third Avenue between Ninth Street and 10th Street, a smoke shop apparently just called Smoke Shop is now open...
... with a velvet rope for a more upscale bong-shopping experience...
There was a storefront shuffle here, with the UPS store moving over a space... Smoke Shop then took the former UPS.