After being abandoned for years, the sprawling Art Deco beachside bathhouse at Jacob Riis park will finally reopen this July. The fine folks at Riis Park Beach Bazaar, which already hosts live events and pop-up food vendors at another building steps away, is responsible for the reopening and renovation of the grand old structure. A soft opening is scheduled for the July 4th holiday, with official opening events taking place on July 7th and 8th.
Both the indoor portion of the beach pavilion, née bathhouse, and the outdoor courtyard space will be open to the public, featuring a video arcade, beach umbrella and chair rentals, and a "beach sundries" shop, in addition to plenty of live music and local food vendors, of course. New vendors at the beach pavilion will include La Cevicheria and Musser's Famous Crab Cakes, as well as fan-favorites like Ample Hills from the bazaar's other beach outpost.
There will also be beach volleyball and table tennis courts, an outdoor beer garden, and onsite camping— or glamping, rather, since each tent features memory foam mattresses and charging stations— from Camp Rockaway. The tents will be set up inside the bathhouse courtyard; weekend tent rentals will cost you about $250 per night.
The bathhouse, which opened in 1932, served as a welcome respite from sun and sand for beachgoers before it gradually fell into disrepair; asbestos removal and weather-inflicted damage (from Tropical Storm Irene and Hurricane Sandy) led the structure to be virtually abandoned until now.
The bathhouse's reopening comes on the heels of an announcement earlier this week from the NYC Parks Department, revealing that a small part of a popular stretch of Rockaway Beach, previously closed due to erosion concerns, would reopen on June 30th.
Riis Park Beach Bazaar plans to start major renovations on the structure and surrounding courtyard once the summer fun is over, according to a press release. Both outposts of the Riis Park Beach Bazaar will remain open through Labor Day, and are accessible via train or ferry. Here's help on how to get there, and a guide to what to eat there at the existing concessions.