LES nightlife operator and Hell Square impresario Rob Shamlian is close to unloading Los Feliz, Spitzer’s Corner, and Fat Baby. Citing all three as “establishments that contribute significantly to the shitty quality of life on Ludlow Street,” Bowery Boogie reports that at a Community Board 3 SLA subcommittee meeting last night, Shamlian presented alongside Darin Rubell, Jaime Felber, and Eric Kruvant —owners of nearby hangouts Boulton & Watt and Drexler’s —who, in the end, were approved to take over two of Shamlian’s three spaces.
Bowery Boogie notes that the hours-long hearing, which quickly turned sour with Shamlian “taunting” the board and accusing its chair of unfairness, included two speakers in support of the proposal and local group the LES Dwellers in opposition.
As part of the application, Rubell claims that Los Feliz will become a three-level Mexican restaurant. (Currently Los Feliz is a three-level dance club that serves Mexican food.) In opposition to the application, LES Dwellers founder Diem Boyd referenced a recent study, in which a group of Hunter College students found that Hell Square “boasts the highest density of on-premise liquor licenses.”
In the end, here’s what the panel decided:
- The Los Feliz application was approved with scaled back hours, a 1:00 a.m. closing time during the week and 2:00 a.m. closing on weekends.
- Spitzer’s Corner was similarly approved for a full liquor license.
- But no luck for Fat Baby, which was denied completely.
The battle of Hell Square is a tricky one, and certainly one that won’t be ending soon. Stay tuned for more news on the neighborhood.