Equinox’s intense new ad campaign is gracing a long-vacant Upper West Side storefront, and a specialty food market is opening underground. Read about recent UWS openings and closings below.

A new Equinox gym appears to be opening in the former home of Bang & Olufsen on 76th street and Columbus Avenue. An Equinox rep did not respond to an inquiry. The site does appear to have been leased, according to the original listing. Thanks to Beatrice for the tip and Corrie for the photo.

bra smyth

Bra Smyth is closing its location at 77th street and Broadway, on the ground floor of the Hotel Belleclaire, says Bonnie, who sent in the photo above. The landlord has been trying to rent that space for more than a year, and the Belleclaire previously said it wanted to redesign the entire half-block, with a new standardized metal and glass facade. The convenience store next to Bra Smyth isn’t leaving, Bonnie tells us. We’ll update everyone when we hear where Bra Smyth is moving.

Gastronomie 491, the market on Columbus and 83rd street, will be opening its second location inside the underground mall at Columbus Circle known as Turnstyle, the Post reported. “Gastronomie 491 will occupy 758 square feet, with six seats by the window. Its neighbors will include the West Village restaurant Ellary’s Greens, Doughnuttery, MeltKraft, Bosie Tea Parlor and Casa Toscana.” Turnstyle is set to open this spring. We last wrote about it here.

breads bakery
A Breads Bakery rendering.

Breads Bakery at 1890 Broadway (62nd-63rd) is holding a press preview next week, although they haven’t announced the opening date yet.

The Sunflower Deli & Grocery on 67th and Amsterdam was seized by the city marshal on Feb. 1, according to a notice on the door. Thanks to John for the tip.

Pizzeria Sirenetta on Amsterdam between 87th and 88th has opened and is already getting some positive Yelp reviews. “We live in the neighborhood and have been looking for a go to brick oven pizza place for a while. Based on how often we already go to the Mermaid Inn and our experience here last night, I think it is safe to say that we have found our spot.”

Laila Rowe on Columbus between 83rd and 84th Streets has closed. The store had taken the sign down weeks ago, but had remained open until recently. Thanks to Marsha for the tip.


Kirsh, the new bakery and restaurant on Columbus Amsterdam between 86th and 87th, is no longer surrounded by a wooden construction shed; last we checked they were hoping to open later this month. Thanks to Caroline for the photo.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 29 comments | permalink
    1. Mary Jones says:

      That space where Bang & Olufsen was looks way too small to be a gym. There is the original Equinox a block away. Years ago Equinox did have a store at 81st st and Columbus, maybe they are trying that again.

      • Filatura says:

        Agree, unless it becomes a boutique personal training outpost or some such. My guess is that the signage is a technique often used by the retail real estate industry: filling the naked windows of empty properties with advertising material so the space inside looks less derelict. Windows in dying suburban malls are often decorated this way. Think of it as an upscale version of the flowerbox-and-curtain decals that the city used to prettify bombed-out buildings in the South Bronx. If the sign doesn’t say “Coming Soon,” I wouldn’t count on a new Equinox in that location.

      • Me says:

        I have it on good authority it is indeed just advertising… There’s already a big Equinox just down the same street.

    2. Rachel G. says:

      So excited for Kirsh and Sirenetta – that stretch of Amsterdam will be much improved!

    3. Filatura says:

      With the advent of Maison Kayser and the openings of Kirsh, Breads Bakery, the rumored bagel bakery on Columbus near 86th and the long-awaited branch of Orwasher’s on Amsterdam, the Upper West Side is becoming Bakery Central. Bad for my low-carb diet, wonderful for every other reason. (Now if someone could only clone the late lamented Louis Lichtman.)

    4. Scott says:

      A spokesperson said that there just wasn’t enough support from the Upper Breast Side.

    5. Lee says:

      Filatura your reference to Louis Lichtman brought tears to my eyes. Thanks for the memory.

      • ScooterStan says:

        RE: “Thanks for the memory.”

        Or, as the employees at Bra Smyth might’ve said, “Thanks for ….. the mammaries”.


        p.s.: Scott, good one! Wonder how many got it!

    6. Lrahip says:

      Lichtman’s…. I still mourn the loss. What a great baker and bakery.

    7. Rich says:

      I believe it’s on Amsterdam between 86th and 87th, not Columbus as noted above.

    8. MLM says:

      I still miss POPOVER’s. 2 years plus – and still nothing on the site. Did Popover’s ever re-appear?

    9. Claire says:

      They’re covering up a bunch of storefronts with ad’s to keep them from looking “undesirable”. We all know how long most of these stay vacant these days, and it’s a pitiful attempt to sweep it all up under the rug like they used to when they painted windows on abandoned buildings to look lived in. Lower the market rent for storefronts around the neighborhood and stop hoping to cash in on the tacky bakery/lulu lemon trend. Those people are off to the suburbs after 5 years anyway, what about the rest of us?

      • Sean says:

        You’re stuck without a prayer in hell. But seriously, what kind of enterprise do you think would be a perfect fit for these empty storefronts on the UWS? The area is all about yoga pants, Soul Cycle, and babies isn’t it?

    10. lynn says:

      Thanks for all of the updates! Do you happen to know what happened to Beer Culture that was supposed to go in the spot where Mike’s Bistro was located, on 72nd between Broadway and WEA? I thought it’s liquor license was approved last month, but I just noticed that ‘for lease’ signs are now up in the windows.

    11. susanjane says:

      I browsed in Bra Smyth a few times but I always left empty handed. The size ranges they stock are extremely limited and the staff is apathetic in the extreme. They won’t be missed.

      • j says:

        agreed. it has got nothing but bad reviews

      • lynn says:

        I have a friend who has shopped their for years, but everything was always custom fitted and literally made to order. Maybe there are more options available off-the-rack now and there’s no demand for this kind of service any longer?

        • lynn says:

          Shopped ‘there.’ I know there are spelling/grammar police here (myself being one of them), lol.

    12. naro says:

      When New Yorkers are cutting back on carbs and sugar I find it remarkable that new bakeries are opening up. I think it is bad timing and bad location. Good luck.

    13. Glenn says:

      Ollie’s Noodles is setting up shop on 103rd St. & Broadway.

    14. tom says:

      Any rumors about the corner space at 86th & B’way, the old Banana Republic? Prime corner has been empty must be going on 2+ years.

      • Bootes says:

        I’m pretty sure that I read HSBC (bank) was moving in. At least I thought that was the location they were talking about. It was on here, but may have been in the comments, a couple months ago.

    15. Anna says:

      Bra Smyth could not compete with Town Shop!

    16. Lucette says:

      HSBC What happened to all those proneness from Gale Brewer not to let banks take over the neighborhood. She also promised to save the Mom and Pops I guess she thinks we all are old and have no memory of what she says and said.

    17. Maybe I missed it, but I don’t recall seeing a notice that Metro Frame shop at Broadway and 91 Street has closed – several weeks ago.