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Iconic Central Park Boathouse to Permanently Close in October

According to a Department of Labor filing, 163 employees will be laid off when the restaurant shuts down

A waterfront boathouse with white pillows and a pastel-colored roof is visible through through trees and leaves
Outside the Loeb Boathouse at Central Park.
Ivan Chertok/Shutterstock

The iconic restaurant at the Loeb Boathouse in Central Park, a premier venue for weddings, the rare-in-NYC lake-side dining, and a memorable Sex and the City shoot, is shuttering for good on October 16 due to economic conditions, reports Patch.

In a Department of Labor filing, owner Dean Poll cited rising costs of labor and goods for the closing, which would result in the permanent layoffs of 163 union employees, represented by the New York Hotel and Motel Trades Council. “The volume was there,” Poll tells Patch. “But the expenses just eat away at it.”

The Loeb Boathouse opened in 1954, after investment banker Carl M. Loeb and his wife Adeline donated $305,000 to fund a new construction that would replace a crumbling wooden structure built in 1873 to accommodate the rising popularity of summertime boating at the lake. During the pandemic, the restaurant had temporarily shut down in October 2020, and reopened in late March 2021 with a joyful Instagram post.

The New York City Parks Department is looking for a new operator for the space, according to Patch. They said they were working with Poll to accommodate those who’ve already planned events there.