To the residents of Nolita, Elizabeth Street Garden is an urban oasis. The garden, a schoolyard in a previous life, is a lush patchwork of contemplative nooks crisscrossed with gravel paths and speckled with large stone sculptures. It’s nestled among its brick and concrete neighbors between Prince and Spring streets. The garden is beloved by those who spend their lunch hours on its benches and stroll its paths on their days off.
The subterranean lounge opening at 19 Kenmare tomorrow has a “secret chef,” according to its menu. The folks at The Lø aren’t saying who it is, but Camille Becerra would be a safe bet. The onetime Top Chef contestant will soon open a restaurant, De Maria, in the space above The Lø, and the 50-seat lounge is operated by Becerra’s partner in the restaurant, musician/DJ/entrepreneur Grace Lee.
MVMT: a solo exhibition by Brandon Perdomo
Opening Monday December 5 at The Living Gallery, 7 pm to 10:30 pm. One night only.
Multidisciplinary artist Brandon Perdomo presents a one-night-only exhibition, which includes photography and performance work. Though this is a solo exhibition, he has enlisted the help of two performances to fill the night: at 8 pm, Another Lopez, who is the subject of a photo series by Perdomo, will perform a live dance installation piece and at 8:30 pm the silly, catchy, trash-loving band Pinc Louds will be leaving their home base of the NYC subway underground to play a colorful set. There is an $8 suggested donation, vegan dumplings may make an appearance, and BYOB is welcome.
Walking down Soho’s Elizabeth Street can feel like a neverending vortex of high-class retail, where the designer clothing racks outnumber the people. That is, until you arrive at the lush, green Elizabeth Street Garden, between Prince and Spring Streets. The green “oasis” (as many have dubbed it) and community hub is once again being actively considered for a site for affordable senior housing, a decision that has long been opposed by Community Board 2 but supported by the area’s City Council member Margaret Chin.
The 20,000-square-foot garden is city-owned, but privately leased by gallerist Allan Reiver, who initially planned to use it to store his sculptures but opened it up as a unique respite from the city’s concrete surroundings, full of colorful flowers, green grass, seating areas, and many eye-catching sculptures. Volunteer-run, the garden has been used for community events, education, performances, film screenings, and an annual Harvest Festival. Some of these events draw hundreds of people, located in a neighborhood the NYC Parks Department has previously identified as “underserved by open space.”
Last week, news surfaced that the NYC Housing and Preservation Development (HPD) had officially issued a Request for Proposals to develop the land the garden stands on. Wednesday afternoon, dozens gathered in the garden for a press conference, bearing signs and passionately asserting their garden’s right to remain where it is.
Somehow Amy Sedaris always seems to be around when paintings have to come down off the walls. Remember the Mondrian that Jacqueline was forced to part with in the new season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt? And how Sedaris’s character, spazzy socialite Mimi Kanasis, was taken aback when Kimmy approached her in Jacqueline’s empty apartment: “I thought you were a Jeff Koons sculpture of Ronald McDonald!”
Daffodils are already peeking their heads up at the Elizabeth Street Garden, welcoming early spring-time wanderers to park their shopping bags on a bench amid the antique sculptures, or spread out on the grass. The park, once inaccessible, has been having a renaissance of sorts– often as a perfect Instagrammable respite for model-types weary of traipsing through Soho.
Cafe Grumpy, the Greenpoint coffee roaster that shot to fame as Ray and Hannah’s place of employment in Girls, is opening a seventh shop in Nolita. The roaster just signed a lease at the Brewster Carriage House, the luxury condo building on the corner of Mott and Broome where John Legend lives.
News of the 15-year lease comes via broker Eastern Consolidated. The 19th-century building was once home to a factory that built carriages used by the Astors, Vanderbilts, J.P. Morgan, and Abraham Lincoln, the press release notes.
While Bushwig brought some flair to Ridgewood this past weekend, Bushwick performance artist Matthew Silver and his “loopers,” last spotted in unicorn garb at Bushwick Open Studios, did their best to keep Manhattan weird on Saturday.
Well, this is a bummer. One of our favorite Spanish spots, La Churreria, has called it a day. Just a month after we got all excited about a menu makeover that brought churro cups into the mix, the three-year-old sister restaurant of neighboring Socarrat has “closed for renovations,” per a Facebook message. But don’t get it twisted, heart-shaped churro fans: the Nolita cafe isn’t coming back. An inquiry reveals the ownership will be “launching a new concept,” with details coming soon.
Hot on the heels of the new Dimes, here’s yet another eatery with a breezy, white-walled California vibe.
The man who robbed an East Village boutique last month may have also held up several other stylish stores in the area.
Last month, the police put out word that, on the afternoon of Jan. 23, a knife-wielding man entered Goldwater (aka AuH20), a used clothing store on East 7th Street, and demanded cash. He snagged $240 while an accomplice waited outside.
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Where Valentine’s grub is concerned, I never thought my heart would stray from Doughnut Plant’s rose-petal doughnuts, but these heart-shaped churros really take the cake. And speaking of cake, La Churreria is also offering a churro cake for the V-Day season. Take a look.
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