By Sabina Mollot
Back in January, Town & Village reported that three neighboring restaurants, Ess-a-Bagel, Grill 21 and Rose restaurant, had lost their leases. Then a couple of weeks ago, a sign went up over the former Ess-a-Bagel space (soon to be home to Tal Bagels) saying the spaces around the corner were also now on the market. Grill 21 is still there as is the shoe repair shop next door as is a small storefront that’s vacant and had been used for storage by Ess-a-Bagel.
The real estate firm listing the spaces is Walker Malloy and according to the exclusive broker for those listings, Eric Fisher, the owner of the building is looking for anything “neighborhood service related” to fill the space.
Additionally, while all three storefronts are being listed, Fisher said that “ideally,” the shoe repair shop can remain.
“We have allegiance to the cobbler,” he said, although the owner would be willing to relocate the shop somehow. The listing notes that parcels of the property can be combined, and the now vacant storage space could be used as traditional retail. The storefronts have actually been getting marketed “very softly” for the past few months, said Fisher, but that changed earlier this month with the sign going up. The only type of retail Fisher could think of that the landlord, an LLC owned by L&M Development CEO Ron Moelis and others, doesn’t want, is a liquor store. The listing described the space, on East 21st Street west of First Avenue, as “ideal for a wine bar or a commissary kitchen.”
Prices also have been made available with the vacant space at 380 square feet going for $4,750. The 415-square-foot shoe repair shop is listed as $5,190 a month and the 715-square-foot Grill 21 is listed as being $8,940.
When Town & Village reached out to the owners of Ess-a-Bagel last week at the restaurant’s Third Avenue location, word is that the hunt for a new space close to the original spot on First Avenue was still in the works.
An employee of the now-shuttered Rose restaurant had said back in January that the business may reopen in the Bronx but not Manhattan. Reached last week, the owner of Grill 21, Henry Beck, said he wasn’t sure if the Filipino restaurant would reopen elsewhere. He also commented that “The neighborhood is still upset about losing Ess-a-bagel, which was for many a landmark.” Also reached this week was the owner of the shoe repair shop, who did not want to be interviewed.
According to the owners of Tal Bagel, their new bagel shop will be moving next month into a combined space that was last used by Ess-a-Bagel and Rose, which will also be shared with a Bank of America.