The icy grip of NYC real estate death has come for Brooklyn Bazaar once again, just three years after the popular venue relocated to a gutted Art Deco banquet hall on Greenpoint Avenue. Co-owners Belvy Klein & Aaron Broudo confirmed the sad news in a statement, blaming a "ridiculously unreasonable" landlord who refused to negotiate a lease extension.
Their indie music venue/flea market/funhouse has inhabited all three floors of the Polonaise Terrace, a sprawling former Polish catering hall, since 2016. The owners were previously forced to vacate their Williamsburg warehouse location after the landlord jacked up rent and then leased the place to a BMW.
“I guess this is what you get when you keep convincing yourself that signing short term leases are a good idea," Klein said. "We were naive enough to actually (foolishly) think that this time would be different, this time the landlords would be reasonable, this time they’d work with us... but nope, surprise! I know I’ve said this before but this city (particularly the private real estate sector) really, really makes it tough for independent venues and businesses to survive, let alone succeed."
Rumors of the likely shuttering had spread in recent weeks, as the venue stopped announcing new shows through December. The landlord, Cayuga Realty, has also started looking for buyers through Meridian Investment Sales, at an asking price of $11.75 million. A recent listing promises "a retail and commercial property ripe for development... [that] can be delivered vacant."
Brooklyn Bazaar's current lease will expire on November 30th. The owners will continue operating outdoor shows at the Riis Park bathhouse, and are slated to break ground on a new restaurant and bar at the McCarren Parkhouse in summer 2021 ("More chill park/beer garden vibe," Klein tells Gothamist, plus new bathrooms).
Beyond that, "there are multiple other potential projects and opportunities on the Brooklyn Bazaar radar as well," according to the statement.
"I mean this is literally like fucking Groundhog Day for us," Klein added. "But it is what it is.”
Inquiries to Cayuga Realty were not immediately returned.