“Things ain’t what they used to be.”
— Duke Ellington
Trying to get a handle on the conditions in SoHo is not easy. People lie. Some tell the truth. But, conditions are somewhat obvious.
Business is clearly suffering. There are numerous empty storefronts. There are fewer restaurants. And, those that remain, have shortened hours. The hotels have reopened and while the old James Hotel on Avenue of the Americas and Grand Street has a new name and new management they’ve raised prices, The SoHo Grand and its cousin The Roxy in Tribeca are still under the Stern ownership. I understand from the doorman that a night can be had for as low as $150 during the week. If you shop on Hotels.com you’ll find that ModernHauz, the old James, runs $270 a night ad The Dominick, the old Trump SoHo is about $250. If you judge how they’re doing by whether the lights are on, it makes you wonder.
Felix’s owner Alain says that they are now open from Wednesday thru the weekend. Most of the other restaurants were closed even on a Thursday, except for the Broome Street Bar, a stalwart in SoHo. You can always get a great burger, salad, or exotic sandwich along with a bowl of chili and sit inside or outside.
The new place, Bice, on Watts has been closed for the last couple of days but don’t read anything into that. It’s an excellent restaurant and the owner and staff are first class.
I highly recommend calling in advance if you plan to visit. Don’t expect to find a parking spot, though, since no one moves their cars any more.
Lincoln Anderson of The Village Sun, formerly editor of The Villager, has essentially been filling the void in local SoHo and Greenwich Village politics — since Gothamist focuses mainly on Manhattan as a whole. However, there are some tired and opportunistic pols still laying around, like Deborah Glick and Brian Kavanaugh and we need new blood. I know I do. The only old-timers worth their salt is Chuck Schumer and Jerry Nadler. My only questions to Nadler’s committee is: Why can we now not get the full Mueller report, AND, What would these characters who planned 1/6 be facing if they’d done this in Venezuela, Russia, or North Korea? Exactly.
Speaking of which — I know Cuomo was handsy. And, he was never a favorite of mine. But, how many Republicans with similar problems have resigned? And, you know, Hochul let the moratorium on evictions and foreclosures expire in the middle of a pandemic surge! Are those upstate roots showing? Have her pollsters told her she doesn’t need Manhattan or New York City to win?
Take a look at the restaurants on West Broadway below and see what you think.