Openings & Closings (& Movings): Issa Nail, Zen Medica, Heather Mc Clean Cleaners, Oxbow Tavern

Photograph by SK.

The area around West 72nd Street and Columbus Avenue has seen a lot of action lately.

Issa Nail announced it will open at 152 West 72nd Street between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues when the city enters Phase 3 of reopening, around July 6th, a spokesperson told WSR. It is the first brand-new opening we’ve heard of in awhile (thanks to tipster “Upper West Sider”.) Issa has been a presence on the Upper East Side, with locations on Second, Third, and Lexington Avenues. “At Issa Nail, we are pleased to offer you an extensive range of services to help you look and feel your best. From massages and manicures & pedicures to waxing,” their website says. (646) 559-2988.

Third time’s the charm.

Zen Medica Nutrition has moved to 137 West 72nd Street, between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues, the old home of Petland Discounts. This is the third location on 72nd Street in eight years for this store, which specializes in alternative medicines and nutrition. “The best thing we can do during the pandemic, along with social distancing and good hygiene, is to keep our own immune systems up,” said owner Chow Moc. With a B.S. in clinical nutrition and dietetics from NYU, Chow is there to “educate, guide and support” customers. “You can’t rely just on prescription drugs or nutrition,” she explained. She also offers CBD products. Zen Medica is open seven days a week, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and is available for shipping and curbside pickup. (212) 873-5610

Photograph by SK.

Heather Mac Clean Cleaners has moved to the long-vacant threading salon at 265 Columbus Avenue, between 73rd and 72nd. “We’re now open!” Jane, the counter person, told us, “and all our customers have come!” They offer laundry services and dry cleaning of all fabrics, including leather. Jane said the space is “smaller and less expensive.” (212) 877-3243.

Photograph by SK.

Oxbow Tavern, 240 Columbus Avenue (71st), which opened in 2018 to great excitement in place of Cafe Tallulah, has closed its doors. But Oxbow will be back one day. They posted this on Facebook: “The reason we are closing is we think it will be a long time – possibly as long as 1-2 years – before fine dining returns to 2019 levels. In the interim, for us to continue to occupy this space would be too expensive. Better to wipe the slate clean, not accumulate a mountain of debt, and sign a new lease when the dust settles.

David Barreto, who represents the property for Cast Iron Real Estate said the space is likely to be taken over by another restaurant. “Greg Hunt, the owner, just couldn’t or didn’t want to come back,” Barreto said. “He tried to sell it to the chef, Tom Valenti (of Oeust fame), but they couldn’t work it out. I mean, how do you assume ownership of a restaurant in the middle of a pandemic?” Someone may want to answer that question. “People are looking at it, proven restaurateurs,” Barreto revealed. “I can’t discuss it yet, but it’ll get rented. It’s a great location. The question is how to make it last.”

Thanks to Upper West Sider for the tips and SK for the photos. Please keep your eyes and ears open and cameras ready as you begin to explore the neighborhood again. What’s brand new and what is gone for good? Let us know at westsiderag at gmail.

FOOD, OPEN/CLOSED | 17 comments | permalink
    1. UWSHebrew says:

      Oxbow was paying $35,000 / month rent. I don’t understand how they paid the bills before the pandemic. I doubt that space will be rented at that rate, or even substantially lower, due to the social distancing needed in restaurants for the foreseeable future, which means 50% or less customers. The numbers don’t work.

      • CCL says:

        Let’s hope al fresco seating can expand dining capacity for a new bistro to start up in summer/fall and lower rent negotiated.

        Neighborhood needs restaurants.

    2. UWS_lifer says:

      Finally, OLLIE’S on 89th and Broadway is OPEN!!!

      I have been waiting months for this. I think they have been closed for almost 9 months or so due to a gas leak in the building, if I recall correctly.

      Anyway, this is a crucial spot for the neighborhood.

    3. John E. says:

      Terrible news! I loved that place. Very sad…

    4. Glen says:

      Another empty storefront on Broadway. The Aldo shoe store on W84/Broadway is gone. They put up plywood earlier in the month, but now the sign has been removed from the front of the store, the stock is gone, and all the display cases have been dismantled. I hope someone takes down the plywood, it is not a good look for the neighborhood.

      Now I wonder about the Victoria’s Secret. It’s a large storefront, but the company is in financial distress.

      • Kim says:

        I never saw people in that Aldo store so I was wondering how long they would hold on. It’s another gaping hole up here in the 80s on Broadway. The North corners of 86th and Broadway on both the uptown and downtown sides have been empty forever and a day. The Arties is shuttered since forever. It’s a retail ghost town up here. I don’t know how long Victoria Secret can hold on either. There used to be a lot of people in there when there were sales now you never see customers in there even when they have sales.

        • Elana says:

          I miss Arties! The reason it’s still there though is because they film Mrs. Maisel scenes there frequently…

    5. Claudette Dupuis says:

      Issa nails is the best!!

    6. RB says:

      The number of permanently closed restaurants and stores has hit another level. Significant changes will need to be made to bring back it whatever the new normal will be.

      • AB says:

        Dystopian and eery on the UWS to be sure. Don’t know how it’ll turn around to be even half as vibrant as it once was before the scaffolding which only exacerbates the current doom and gloom.

    7. Robert says:

      Great space for something where Dallas BBQ was! It’s only been empty now for years….even wo any pandemic. Feel the same thing with Oxbow. Rent is just “too damn high”!

    8. BJK says:

      Doesn’t seem to matter how great a location is—the old Isabella’s sat empty for ages (and then the new proprietor took forever to open and never did get the outdoor space going again). Don’t hold your breath.

    9. Jay says:

      Yu Kitchen on 101st and Broadway also looks to be back open, which I’m happy to see

    10. Tom D. says:

      Someone else will have to confirm, but it looks to me like 107 West bit the big one and has closed down. Walked by there Wednesday evening and it was really dark. It looked like there were no tables etc. on the floor, and all the menus, health grade, etc. in the window were gone. Sad to see, but I’m not surprised as there never seemed to be many people in there since sometime md last year (about when I understand there was an ownership change).

      Also, Broadway Pizza at 103rd St has a sign in the window saying “Pizzeria for Sale”.

    11. Glen says:

      The Brooks Bros. on W87/Bway is gone also. I looked in the door yesterday. All the stock is gone, the shelving is dismantled and it looked like some interior demolition had taken place.