Openings & Closings: Morton Williams, Design Within Reach, Appleseeds, Petland Discounts, Empellon Taqueria

The Morton Williams at One West End Avenue, between 59th and 60th Streets, is opening next month. The store looks fully built out and there are already goods on the shelves, as shown in the photo above from Allie.

Design Within Reach just opened at 2162 Broadway near 76th Street. “The company will celebrate its grand opening on Saturday, May 4, with an all-day open house featuring refreshments, giveaways and a free floral workshop led by Miya Takama,” a release said. Thanks to Beth for the tip.

Petland Discounts on 72nd street between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenue has been closed for more than a week and they’re not answering the phone. The company had said it would likely close stores after the death of its longtime owner.

Appleseeds, a children’s play space, just closed at 200 West End Avenue (69th-70th).

Empellon Taqueria is opening a new location, according to Eater. “The popular West Village spot from chef Alex Stupak will open this fall in new development Waterline Square, located at 655 West 59th St., between West End Avenue and the West Side Highway…The chef and restaurateur says he’s gotten a lot of customer requests over the years to head to the UWS, and that this was the right opportunity for him.” Here’s the menu at the downtown location.

JE’DERM skin atelier, a “bespoke skincare” business, opened inside 10 W 74th street Suite LLD

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 64 comments | permalink
    1. NYC10023 says:

      A new T-Mobile is getting ready to open at the SE corner of 69th and Broadway

      ….because we don’t have enough cell phone stores already.

      • Sean says:

        It’s not a cell phone store. It’s a carrier’s branch.

        • NYC10023 says:

          Thanks Sean, for the clarification.

          I assume they won’t be selling equipment there? I won’t be able to buy a cell phone there? I’ll have to walk up a block to the AT&T store? Or 2 blocks to the Verizon retailer?

          I shall now call the banks on every other corner “Financial Institution Branches”.

          • Sean says:

            That is what it is. A cell phone store would sell phones locked and unlocked and for different carriers. A branded store has phones for use only on that carrier.

            • NYC10023 says:

              It. Still. Sells. Phones.

              HENCE: Cell phone store.

              I did not define it as a “Sells Any Brand Of *Unlocked* Cell Phone Store For Your Personal Enjoyment Using The Carrier Of Your Choice Store”, I kinda lumped it into one easy to understand term.

              I should have been more specific and will definitely be re-thinking my haphazard use of the word “store” in the future.

              Either way, the whatever you call it should be open by Friday.

            • Various Artist says:

              It’s a cell phone store.

            • Kate says:

              It’s a sleepy Tuesday afternoon, so out of boredom I’ll weigh in on this scintillating debate.

              It’s a cell phone store.

      • Larry says:

        Would you prefer empty stores or cellphone stores & banks? They pay rent and they fill empty space so quit complaining

        • chuck D says:

          I wonder if these franchises are a scam? Get poorish, unsophisticated entrepreneurs to open these store. Load them up with debt and unmovable product. Let ’em crash and burn, then move on to the next one.

          I mean, there’s one on every other block.

        • NYC10023 says:

          they don’t pay my rent, Larry.

          They pay the inflated rents that only corporate chains can afford now. So as much as you may enjoy leisurely weekends browsing through the cell phone stores.. erm.. retail branches and bank offices, I sure do miss unique restaurants and mom/pop stores. But hey that’s just me.

          When this opens, you will have T-Mobile at 69/Broadway, Sprint at 70/Broadway and AT&T at 71/Broadway. Do you see why maybe I’m not too excited about it? (Also note the T-Mobile store at 72nd/Broadway currently)

    2. Steen says:

      I’ve been very worried about the animals that were inside the Petland on 103rd and Broadway. It’s been closed for more than a week, and I have yet to see anyone go in or out. My worry is that everything inside is dead at this point. I am hoping that WSR might have more information though.

    3. Kindly Dr Dave says:

      Another Petland on Bwy at 102 has closed. Rumor is that all store in the chain are closed suddenly

      • Deborah Surdi says:

        Correct. I just read that all stores closed as of April 18th.

      • Sean says:

        This is a chain. It didn’t close suddenly. It was announced by the heirs of the now deceased owner that they did not wish to continue with the business.

    4. Sue L says:

      What we actually need is a Morton Williams between 96th and 79th & Bway. In this part of the UWS, many people still cook, and (pun intended), it would definitely become a “target”!

      • davidt says:

        I beg your pardon. We certainly do cook at this end of the West Side. I love MW, though I think it might be just as precious as Whole Paycheck. The only thing that we have in this neighborhood to speak of is Western Beef which is about the most raggedy supermarket as I have ever seen. It is higgledy-piggledy and none too clean. I’m very glad that we’re going to have it, even if we’re “not the Upper West Side. Never was, never will be.”

      • Jen says:

        I’m just curious what do people who don’t cook eat during the week. Take-outs from decent restaurants on daily basi is expensive for lots of households even in UWS. Fast food is not a choice for many either. So what is it then?

        • Sean says:


        • B.B. says:

          Trader Joes and Whole Foods have a decent array of various take away. Everything from rotisserie chicken to ready made/packaged meals.

          Same for Citarella, Zabars and countless others.

          A whole rotisserie chicken from any of the above will make two or maybe more meals for a single or double household. If there are children then probably one dinner and maybe lunches or snacks the next day.

          Sweetgreens is packed with the after work/dinner crowd picking up meals.

          Pick up a pre-cooked chicken (whole or parts) or whatever main meat. Get home whip up some sides/veggies and you’ve got dinner done in < half hour. Especially if you make good use of our friend Mr. Microwave Oven.

      • BillyNYC says:

        79th St. and Broadway would be the most valuable spot for a super high-end supermarket like Morton Williams. But first you have to buy it from Zabar.

        • Thelonius says:

          From your lips to G*d’s ear. I am at 80 St. and have to walk 8 blocks to Key Food. At least the prices are reasonable. If Key Food goes then I will have to do every day shopping at Fairway, which is stressful and more expensive.

          • RK says:

            God must not be a capitalist because no chain supermarket would open so close to Fairway and Zabars.

            • Mark P says:

              You make an excellent point. I didn’t understand it on first think because I see Zabar’s being for prepared foods, not groceries.

              However, groceries are commodities – prepared foods are not. People who buy prepared foods are relatively price insensitive – the whole point is paying for convenience. So prepared foods are a profit center for grocery stores. It would be hard for a supermarket to open close to Zabars – let’s call close north of Fairway (75), south of Broadway Farm & Key Food (85) – and make money. At best they’d be splitting profits with Zabars, but probably have much higher real estate costs.

              Rats. Once again, sorely missing Westside Market.

      • MoodyFoodie says:

        I happened to stop into the Morton Williams in Kips Bay earlier this evening. I noticed one item for $4.99 that sells at Whole Foods for $2.40, and organic bananas being sold for $1.69/lb (more than 2x what they now are at Whole Foods), and…wait for it…they were just two bananas per pack, on a styrofoam tray, entombed in plastic cling film. If that is indicative of the preciousness of MW, then, eh, I’m not excited.

    5. Nashy says:

      Arrgh, 59 Street west of West End is not the Upper West Side. Never was, never will be.

      • really? says:

        Oh stop already

        • Elbo says:

          Why should the commentator “stop” striving for accuracy? That location is midtown west not upper west side. No one who lives, say, at 86th and Amsterdam would consider that location in their neighborhood or even easily accessible.

      • UWSHebrew says:

        Agreed Nashy!

      • Hangry Westsider says:

        Agree. It’s really on the periphery — the Lower Upper Westside. There’s a food desert up here these days, especially with the loss of the Westside Market at 77th St. As for Fairway, just saw a huge rat in the store yesterday. Eeeek!

      • Weekender says:

        Oh Nashy I thought you libs were “all inclusive” and welcoming. Why the anger with the distinction of the boundaries of neighborhoods. UWS begins at 59th but who cares really and what does it matter?

      • Kat French says:

        Technically, the store IS on the Upper West Side, since it is on West End Avenue between 59th and 60th. If it was in midtown, it would be on 11th Avenue. 59th Street is the southern border of Central Park and therefore the dividing line between midtown and the UWS.

        Maybe people in that neighborhood feel more like mid-towners, but geographically the UWS distinction is correct.

    6. Someday I'll Diet says:

      Re: “Morton Williams at One West End Avenue, between 59th and 60th Streets, is opening next month.”

      EXCELLENT NEWS. As proven by its other “near-by” locations (9th Ave above W.58th and W. 57th btw 6th & 7th) they are well-run, well-stocked stores…and a lot-less-precious than “Whole PayCheck”.

      And “Old Sometime” (the M57) goes right past it…slowly.

      • Pixielu says:

        Wholefoods actually has much better prices in a lot of items than the local supermarkets. This is how Amazon trying to drive out local businesses. Good for the customers now but maybe bad in the long run.

        • WF shopper says:

          This is absolutely correct. People who call it Whole Paycheck have clearly not been in there very much. Are there expensive items? Sure. But if you focus on the store brand (“365”) and on the increasing amounts of sale items since the Amazon takeover, the prices are actually much better than those at a Gristedes, D’Agostino, Morton Williams or West Side Market.

          That said, their produce is never a good deal.

    7. herewego says:

      Can’t wait to see the comments about the prices at the new UWS Empellon and Design Within Reach!

      • Christine E says:

        @herewego, I think you mean hear we go again! Design Within Reach was previously on the UWS, on Columbus near 76th. Prices were high then, though the neighborhood demographics have shifted a bit since; perhaps this incarnation will stick.
        What I like about their stores is the inspiration and design events — you can take those ideas and make your own, affordably in many cases. What I disliked about DWR was that they were strictly a showroom. Meaning, frustratingly, you could not buy and take home anything on site, even a small silly bird decoration the size of your hand. Instead you have to place an order and wait weeks for delivery. That strategy seems incompatible with today’s instant gratification consumerism.

    8. Burtnor says:

      Agree with SueL and Nashy. Where are people between 79 and 96 near Broadway supposed to shop? I’m sick of dragging groceries on the subway and bus from Fairway and Whole Foods.

      We used to have 4 supermarkets within blocks. Now, none. Just nail salons, banks, and flash in the pan overpriced niche boutiques ($4 cupcakes and $15 boxes of tea).

      • Sue says:

        Fairway is always out of stuff. Not sure who does their inventory but when I asked about something I was told – “it always sells out fast”

        So….shouldn’t they order more?

        Yesterday I went for 5 things – and left empty handed.

        There used to be so many supermarkets around. Not much choice.

        • B.B. says:

          Many supermarkets such as Whole Foods, Fairway and others are moving to reduce inventory held in back storage. As such they simply get deliveries of “X” amount of goods and when it sells out that is all until next truck/delivery arrives.

          Holding back inventory is expensive, consumes space, and there is a risk things will either expire/go past their sell by date before ever reaching shelves.

          While dumpster divers and others who go through those garbage bags/dumpsters for things; to a supermarket having to throw away expired/unsold goods represents a loss and waste. Far better to simply scale inventory to what sells (or can be sold), rather than over stocking and perhaps having to throw the unsold things away.

          Even Rite Aid, Duane Reade, Walgreens, CVS and similar stores do same. If something is out of stock you’ll be very lucky if they have extra inventory. Usually you’ll just be offered a rain check and told to return when next truck arrives.

      • Christine E says:

        79-96 on Broadway is in easy reach of Fairway, Citarella, Zabars, Broadway Farm, Key Foods, Whole Foods, and 2x Trader Joes, to name a few. Yes there are less grocers than before, but UWS remains a foodie haven.

      • Sean says:

        Peapod, Fresh Direct comes to mind.

      • Mark B says:

        I live on W 93rd. There’s a Trader Joe’s, Mani Market, and D’Agostino all within a 3 block radius. C’mon people!

        • West Ender says:

          And Westside on 97 and Broadway. But it would be nice to have another option in the mid 80s.

          I don’t know if it’s due to the relatively recent opening of Trader Joe’s, but I’ve noticed a lot of products being phased out a Westside and replaced with more “gourmet” type items. So it’s not even more expensive than before which sends me to TJs more.

        • Josh says:

          Also Columbus Natural Foods on 95. Make it a 4 block radius and add Keyfoods and Whole Foods.

      • Julia says:

        How about the Key Food at 97th and Amsterdam. I get a lot of staple stuff there, their produce is basic and fine, and it’s about the only place that my bill is less than I anticipated.

    9. UpperWestSider4Life says:

      This is pathetic. Who cares if you are from 59th St, 69th St, 79th St, 89th St. It all upper west side. I work in a high end condo on the upper west side and I was born in raised on 83rd St, living there since 1969. More than half of you haven’t been in your area that long. Upper west side is considered West 59th St up to west 110th St. So stop with BS of 59th St will never be upper west because guess what…….you are!!!!!

      • UWSHebrew says:

        maybe try decaf?

      • Billy Amato says:

        I have been here longer than you and we never called at the Upper West Side in the 60s!!! It was called uptown on the west side near Harlem!!!
        I called it the “war-zone”, Because it was… all the brownstones windows were all bricked-up. Only if you were one family home or rooms for rent for $11 a day were Available and buildings were for sale running between $8000 and $12,000 each.

        • Billy Amato says:

          Adding to my Comment: The name the “Upper West Street” didn’t come into fashion until the mid-70s. Upper West Street was from West 66 Street to West 96th Street. Anything after that was named Washington Heights area until you hit West 125 St. and that would be Harlem. Anything below West 66 street would be called Midtown.
          And now most recently 1970’s UWS bounded by Central Park and the Hudson River, and West 59th Street and West 110th Street is now called the Upper West Side or UWS. Back in the very early1900s through late 50s the Upper West Side area from West 66 Street to West 96th Street was called “Susquehanna”.

    10. Evan Bando says:

      Morton Williams on WEA and 59th? Let us know when one opens on the UWS, namely, on Broadway and 68th.

      • Aurelius says:

        Excellent idea — we need to have a new supermarket in the old food emporium space. hope it happens.

    11. Caleb says:

      I live on W. 102nd and the Rapid Park garage closed yesterday, I think, permanently. There is some construction going on on an outside upper deck roof…. not seeing anything on line…. wondering if anyone here knows anything.

    12. Yes! Finally something about smocked dresses.

    13. John Connor says:

      Anyone know what’s taking appleseeds spot? Are they moving to a new location on uws??

    14. nycityny says:

      To all the scolds writing that 59th & West End isn’t the Upper West Side: The name of this e-publication is “West Side Rag.” Can we all just agree that 59th & West End is on the west side and worthy of being reported by the West Side Rag. Also, there are folks north of 66th St who might be interested in shopping there, including me.

    15. CF says:

      All the Petlands closed several weeks ago. I’m concerned about what happened to all the small animals and fish in the back of the store. The store on 72nd Street looks like staff left in a hurry. I fear the animal were left behind. If anyone knows otherwise, please post.

    16. Amy says:

      Petland Discounts actually closed a month ago.

    17. oldtimeUWSer says:

      The new DWR opened up the elaborate ceiling of what I think was a church or theater that was once there, might make an interesting historical feature for the Rag. Worth a look inside just to see that.

    18. […] Seeds children’s play space may have closed its location at 200 West End Avenue (69th-70th). But they will continue offering their Songs for Seeds program on the Upper West Side […]