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Posts Tagged ‘Souvenir Shop’

Souvenir Shop coney Island

Maritza Suriano behind the new counter at her souvenir shop in Coney Island. April 18, 2013. Photo © Tricia Vita via flickr

On Thursday in Coney Island, ATZ found longtime souvenir shop owner Maritza Suriano moving into Thor Equities new building at Surf and Stillwell Avenues. The most remarkable thing is that her storefront on Stillwell is pretty much the same spot that she leased for decades in the Henderson Building until she got notice to leave before the building’s demolition by Thor. The space is about three times the size of her former space, she said. The lease is for one season and runs through Labor Day.

As ATZ first reported, the building has two other tenants that we were able to confirm: It’Sugar, a Miami-based candy retailer, has the corner store and is expected to open May 3. Wampum, a lifestyle clothing brand and skateboard shop featuring 90% clothing which has two other locations in Bridgehampton and Nolita is slated to open in Coney on May 24.

According to the Coney Island Rumor Mill, a restaurant and bar with a roof deck are coming too but the name is top secret, though it’s said not to be a Hooters. Previous rumors have focused on Wet Willie’s and Hooters. What’s missing from this mix? The bells and whistles of an arcade or other “Group A” amusement attraction required by the City’s zoning in Coney Island. In the past, Thor Equities had advertisements touting Coney Island as “The Retail Ride of A Lifetime,” but has since replaced them with photos of the Cyclone and Wonder Wheel.

Groceries

Stocking up at Maritza’s Souvenir Shop. April 18, 2013, Photo © Tricia Vita via flickr

The last time ATZ wrote about Maritza was in August 2010, when her business along with Popeye’s Chicken were being evicted from the soon-to-be demolished Henderson Building. At the time, Maritza said, “When [Thor Equities] makes the new building he promised to give me a 10 year lease, but I don’t know. They’re supposed to talk to me about it, but I’m still here waiting.”

After Thor CEO Joe Sitt announced demolition plans in April 2010, a rendering was released of a cheesy looking temporary one-story building occupied by hamburger and taco food joints. At the time we thought it was a ploy to get demo permits from the City and put an end to preservationists’ efforts to get approval for an historic district in Coney Island. The site is zoned for a hotel of up to 30 stories. Thor’s new building on the Henderson site was finished last year but has remained vacant till now.

After losing her space in the Henderson Building, Maritza relocated in 2011 to a cubbyhole of a shop on Stillwell Avenue under Cha Cha’s. In 2012 she had to relocate again and opened her souvenir stand in a trailer at Cha Cha’s Steeplechase Park. “I’ve been in Coney Island for 25, 30 years,” said Maritza, “Before Stillwell, I was on Surf where the grocery store is.” Her spacious new store has room for groceries and beach gear.

Souvenir Shop

Maritza surveys her new space in Thor Equities building at Surf and Stillwell. April 18, 2013. Photo © Tricia Vita via flickr

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Related posts on ATZ…

April 11, 2013: Thor’s Coney Island: Wampum Clothing & Skate Pop-Up to Open in May

February 13, 2013: Thor’s Coney Island: Candy Retailer It’Sugar to Open Surf Ave Store

December 24, 2012: In Thor’s Coney Island, Discount on Retail Ride of a Lifetime

December 19, 2012: Will Coney Island’s Surf Ave Become a Mecca for Franchises?

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ATZ is happy to see Coney Island’s small businesses alive and kicking in the first year of Coney Island’s predicted rebirth. The good news is that all of the familiar mom-and-pop shops, bars and eateries on Coney Island’s Boardwalk are back in business for the 2010 season. The big difference is real estate speculator Joe Sitt is no longer their landlord and unlike previous years, they didn’t suffer a rent hike.

Coney Island Souvenir Shop on the Boardwalk. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Rolling Sign: Souvenir Shop on the Boardwalk in Coney Island. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

When the City of New York bought 6.9 acres of Coney Island property from Thor Equities in November, existing tenants on the Boardwalk were offered a one-year lease at last year’s rate, including one tenant who’d famously gotten the boot from Thor: The Lola Star Boutique. We’re thrilled that Lola aka entrepreneur Dianna Carlin is back in her original location next to Ruby’s after a one-year absence. Carlin, the founder of Save Coney Island, had not been offered a lease in 2009 by Thor because of her outspokenness on Coney Island development issues.

Lola Star Boutique Returns! Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Lola Star Boutique Returns! Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Lola Star’s Dreamland Roller Rink, located in the Childs Building on the Boardwalk and leased from Taconic Investment Partners, will reopen next month. (Update 5/16: The roller rink will NOT return to Coney!) Other returning Boardwalk businesses scheduled to open in the coming weeks: Pio Pio Rico–“The House of the Best Peruvian Rotisserie Chicken”— located in the former Astroland arcade, Beer Island, and Nathan’s Famous Boardwalk location.

Best French Fries Sold Here: Paul's Daughter on Coney Island Boardwalk. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

The Best French Fries Sold Here! Paul's Daughter on Coney Island Boardwalk. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Paul’s Daughter, Gyro Corner, Ruby’s Bar & Grill, Cha Cha’s, Steve’s Grill House, Rosa’s Tacos & Juice Bar and the Coney Island Souvenir Shop next to Ruby’s are already open daily. Weather permitting, of course. The Lola Star Boutique and Shoot the Freak are currently open weekends. Also open daily in Coney Island: Nathan’s Famous original location at Surf and Stillwell, Williams Candy, Coney Island Beach Shop and the WCS New York Aquarium.

JT & Cha Cha Welcome You to Coney Island 2010. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

JT & Cha Cha Welcome You to Coney Island 2010. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

On Wednesday, a painter was touching up the sign at Steve’s Grill House. ATZ observed many people out and about on the Boardwalk. We chatted with several British tourists who’d been stranded in New York by the volcanic ash cloud. It was a sunny, breezy afternoon until rain sent everyone scurrying for cover and the Coney Island Souvenir Shop wheeled in their sign.

Touching Up the Sign at Steve's Grill House on the Boardwalk. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Touching Up the Sign at Steve's Grill House on the Boardwalk. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Coney Island Souvenir Shop owner Tom Suh died in a car accident in March and is much missed by his Coney Island friends and family. On Easter Sunday, we offered our condolences to Mrs. Suh, who is recovering from the accident, and son Rob, who is carrying on the family business.

Mrs. Suh in her family's souvenir shop on the Boardwalk. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Mrs. Suh in her family's souvenir shop on the Boardwalk. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Last Friday, it was decidedly chilly in Coney Island, yet a photo shoot with a bikini-clad model was in progress on the Beach. We ducked into Ruby’s Bar and Grill, where it’s cozy and Beato was manning the grill. Did you know that Coney Island Boardwalk’s oldest bar and grill is among the Travel Channel’s “Top 21 sexiest beach bars”? Ruby’s has a brand-new website at www.rubysconeyisland.com or follow their Facebook fan page for news of upcoming events.

At Ruby's on Friday Afternoon: Beato Minds the Store. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

At Ruby's on Friday Afternoon: Beato Minds the Store. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Ruby’s namesake–Ruby Jacobs–bought the bar in 1975. That’s his portrait with the Parachute Jump amid the vintage photos on the oft-photographed wall. After Ruby’s death in 2000, West 12th Street was named Ruby Jacobs Way in his honor. His daughters and son-in-law continue to run the family-owned business. Cheers to Coney Island’s 2010 season!

Wall of Photos at Ruby's Bar in Coney Island. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

Wall of Photos at Ruby's Bar in Coney Island. Photo © Tricia Vita//me-myself-i via flickr

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Related posts on ATZ…

March 14, 2010: Eldorado Auto Skooter: Coney Island’s Disco Palace of Bumper Cars

March 12, 2010: Photo of the Day: Williams Candy in Coney Island

February 7, 2010: Coney Island Valentine: Get a Sea Lion Kiss at New York Aquarium!

February 3, 2010: New in 2010: Coney Island Fun Phone Addition to CI Fun Guide

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