By Scott Etkin
Margot Patisserie on 74th Street between Broadway and West End Avenue, an UWS staple since 1994, is closing. The shop’s lease is ending this month and the last day is tentatively set for May 22 (it could be sooner because their AC is broken and the refrigerator might overheat this weekend). Margot expressed gratitude for her customers and neighbors – some of whom she hasn’t told yet because she fears she would get too emotional. “They have been very, very nice to me,” she said, tearing up. “During the pandemic, when I was by myself, they would at least pop their head in to make sure I’m ok.” Located in the French Beaux-Arts Ansonia building, Margot’s sweet and savory menu is influenced by the recipes of Southern France. “All this emotional support is overwhelming so for me to leave is very, very difficult,” she said. While Margot doesn’t “know what the future holds” she’s holding out hope to see her customers again. Online ordering will stay open until the shop’s last day. (Thanks to Linda for the tip.)
Rituals, a “Home and Body Cosmetics” shop, which sells bath and shower gels and body care products, is closing their store on Columbus between 80th and 81st on May 18. The store’s lease is ending and the company decided not to renew, according to the area manager, who also said that the Columbus Avenue store had opened eight years ago and was the company’s first location in the United States. Rituals has two other locations in Manhattan, both downtown (on Broome Street and Greenwich Street).
Mega Building Supply, a hardware store located at 201 West 145th Street, will open a second location in July, on the west side of Broadway between 87th and 88th Streets. The space was formerly occupied by The Bar Method, an exercise studio. “We are not your typical cluttered hardware store,” Sol Goldberg, the owner told the Rag. “We are a beautiful space which is ‘shoppable’ and customer friendly.” The new store, like the current location will have a full housewares section, a cleaning supply section, and a hardware section, according to Goldberg. Plumbing supplies, paint, and small kitchen appliances will also be sold. Hours will be Monday through Friday 8am to 7pm, and Sundays from 1pm to 4pm. The store will be closed on Saturdays. (Thanks to Bruce for the tip.)
The Eye Man is moving – but not far – with a soft opening planned for June 1st and a grand opening on June 11th, according to Shafi, the store manager. The optometrist that has helped generations of Upper West Siders will be located across the street at 2261 Broadway on 81st Street, where Teavana, a tea shop, had previously been. The new location is smaller than the original but has a prime spot on the corner.
La Maison, a hair salon by the stylist Elie Tanous, is coming to 226 West 79th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam, replacing Burke & Willis, the Australian bistro. Planning to open later this spring or in the summer, the salon will have a “speakeasy Parisian vibe,” Elie wrote on Instagram. Elie has more than ten years of experience and has trained with some of the top names in hair, like Vidal Sassoon, L’Oreal and Wella. His existing salon is in Hackensack, NJ. (Thanks to Tierney for the tip.)
I moved into an SRO on 71st and West End in 1995,and found Margots shop right away. It was a real bright spot in my life in those days, simple, delicious, and no hype just a lovely place. Moved outta that dump the next year but stayed in the neighborhood and stopped in often. Good luck and thanks for all the great sweets and coffee over many years
“We are not your typical cluttered hardware store…”
That’s the best kind of hardware store!
Very sad about Margot Patisserie. If you ask if they have had problems with the neighborhood, I think you’ll find that our small businesses have suffered due to the environment, aggressive panhandling, items stolen, less street traffic due to avoiding the mentally ill roaming everywhere. I’ve seen more long-term small businesses close this year as they have had enough and it’s not just from tough times during the pandemic. Go ahead and ask your local businesses about the out of control panhandling and thefts. Yes, it causes businesses to lose money on a daily basis so why think they will stay? Does anyone grasp this?
No, it’s not those things.
Probably has to do with how little known the place was (except to those who knew it). I was/am on that corner of Broadway and 74th once a day for 20+ years and never noticed the place until some time in 2021.
And it’s just the kind of place I would have tried in years past.
Lived in this neighborhood 2014-2020 and never heard of it. Feeling the Mandela effect because how could I have missed this for 6 years??
Panhandling, right. Not the pandemic, inflation, deteriorating economy, increased competition (e.g. patisserie Chanson), or the sheer exhaustion of being a sole proprietor for 28 years. Panhandling, of course. That must be the reason.
Yes, Johnny J.
Panhandling and mentally ill roaming and terrorizing not only the UWS but every part of the city could be a factor! Thank Duh Blasio and ignoring the mentally ill for years. Not to mention out of control teenagers with no home training.
That’s not inflation, friend.
The massive amounts of homeless people and mentally ill people really can be traced back to Reaganomics. Reagan gutted funding for public housing and for the mentally ill. You can blame DiBlassio but the homeless issue in this country really can be traced back to Reagan. Even his son agrees.
Good bye Margot! Thank you for all the community, comfort and apricot pastry I enjoyed on my breaks from working alone in my studio in the Apple Bank Building. J’espère te revoir un jour!
So many closures. So many huge empty spaces. Devastating.
No more cocoanut croissants – a little-known treasure at Patisserie Margot. So sad!
Imagine something we really need… like a
grocery store!…. opening in the west
Now that would be a cause for celebration!!
The West 80s needs a *nice* supermarket option. Like the new Morton Williams at West End/60th.
There is still the Gristedes on Columbus and the Key Foods on Amsterdam. But yeah. The closings of Food Emporium and Gristedes was sad. And there used to also be the Red Apple, or whatever it was called, before it became a Duane Reade, on 88th. Sigh.
And there was the associated on 83rd and Columbus!
I still miss it so much …
I guess I will finally be going on my diet,
now that Margot Patisserie’s wonderful
cinnamon twists will be no longer be
available. So sad to see them go!
I am so sad to learn of Margot’s closing. It was a little bit of joy during these long years of Covid sadness. I enjoyed meeting friends there over the past few years and I know how hard they worked to stay afloat. I hope that Margot opens elsewhere sometime. Thanks for some wonderful times and great food!
Thank you, Chris. When I mentioned the lack of grocery stores in the West 80’s several months ago, people on this site disputed me. Key Food is not exactly a large supermarket but they are all we have.
Would that others join us in rallying for a supermarket in one of the many empty large spaces lining Broadway.
I’d rally in a heartbeat. Since the closing of West Side Market on Broadway near 77th I am trapped by having to go to Fairway, which once upon a time was a holy grail for fresh fruit and vegetables and specialty items, but has devolved into a dump. And an overpriced one, at that. I go to Zabars, always fair, and sometimes Citarella despite shocking inflation, but neither of them carry Mr. Clean, laundry detergent, Clorox and other basic necessities. Trader Joes has good prices but only carry its own brand and is limited because of it. Won’t somebody please open a nice, clean, ordinary supermarket for people who are just trying to live their lives?! Key Food is too far away for me. Pioneer on Columbus is expensive but a great back-up.
Kay Food–the only grocery store I go to where my bill is less than I expected.
Wonder if Margot Patisserie can take over the Rituals vacated space at 80th and Columbus. With the coming new entrance to the Natural History museum nearby, it will be a much needed asset to the neighborhood.
Oh no, so very sorry to learn that Margot is closing. Such wonderful baguettes and sandwiches (the perfect Paris ham & cheese), beautiful pastries, and my favorite palmiers. I can only hope they find their way back. We tried to go there as often as possible. Wishing them all the best. Very, very sad. A real loss.
So sad to hear about Margot’s.
Feel really sad that Margot’s is closing. This is a lovely place with very good patisseries and very nice people working there. What do we have to do to keep unique and good small businesses on the UWS? All we have are homogenous big retailers, too many big box stores and banks. This is just not the same UWS anymore. I will miss being so warmly greeted at Margot’s.
“What do we have to do to keep unique and good small businesses on the UWS?”
Thank you for asking…tell your City Council, State Assembly & State Senator the laws need to change to protect us and allow us to run our businesses without being impeded by daily troubles from crime, shoplifting, aggressive panhandling in the store, mentally ill in the store, loitering. Add these things to whatever the current real economic challenges are and you have your reason small businesses leave and only the big boxes stay, though they are leaving too. VOTE for who will create better laws for us and we will stay and THANK YOU!
This is it, this is the personal safety and quality of living issue many would like to deny, as the tax base is packing up and leaving. While I have the remainder of my lease on the UWS until early next year, I bought a house out of state just yesterday. This is in no way the same neighborhood of 2019. I was born in NYC and lived my entire adult life here. The political class in NYC and NY state does not support the average citizen.
So grateful The Eye Man is alive and well! Have been going there for almost 40 years, and it’s where I have bought ALL my glasses. Owner/manager Lloyd Chautin, the “Eye Man” himself, recently retired, as I understand. Wishing him years of good health and happiness. He is a very special person.
We will miss Patisserie Margot so! It was the last bastion of wonderful bakeries in the neighborhood. Not a chain, but a family operated bright spot that prided itself on top quality ingredients and perfect pastries. It’s now joining the ranks of Eclair and Royale. Long-gone UWS institutions that would rival any of the mass-produced bakeries that might look fancy, but can’t match Margot’s quality.
It is interesting that new businesses are moving into already occupied locations rather than empty storefronts. The opening of new businesses does not move the dial on all the empty storefronts.
Still feeling sad today after waking up to news here that Margot Patisserie will close soon. I echo the sentiments of others here who found Margot a real treasure, both the quality of the goods and also the warm hospitality and human connection of an independent, local shop.
Even though I’ve lived in the neighborhood for decades, I only discovered Margot about a year ago. No idea how that could be, particularly as I have a sweet tooth, but it’s true.
I wish Margot the best but will miss her and the shop. Hoping that Margot will reappear on the UWS one day soon.
The whole neighborhood is reeling with the news of Margot’s closure, a real loss. Everyone’s in shock. It was a real neighborhood treasure and a place that so many of us depended on for our great coffee and pastries. I hope someday it resurfaces around here soon.
Oh, no! Margot is not to go!!! Please! What a wonderful place. Absolutely delicious sandwiches, bread a pastries……please don’t leave us. Stay, stay stay.
Merci, Margot. Your croissants have been a constant temptation and delight.