The verdict is in: The La Marina site will be back in business by summer’s end.
After a months-long bankruptcy battle, a judge has cleared the former owners of the Inwood waterfront hotspot to transfer ownership to new operators, who plan to open a new eatery there in about three weeks, they told THE CITY.
Jimmy Goldman, of the southern chain Brother Jimmy’s, said in court on Monday he wants to get the not-yet-named new restaurant up and running as soon as possible.
“We’re going to start cleaning up tomorrow,” he said of the waterfront space that has been empty for nearly a year. Tackling overgrown weeds is high on the to-do list, he added.
Goldman was the centerpiece in an agreement between La Marina’s owners and the Parks Department to pull the famous uptown venue out of bankruptcy after its closure last year following a drug bust and liquor license suspension.
Bankruptcy Court Judge Sean Lane signed off Monday on a deal greenlit last week by those owed money by the La Marina group — the owners owed more than $600,000 to 20 different parties, records show — as well as by city Parks Department officials.
When Goldman and a new lender take over the license to operate in the La Marina space, the involvement of those who ran the venue over six tumultuous years will officially end. The Dyckman Street space with Hudson River views drew celebrities and locals alike — just as its large, loud parties and concerts became a flashpoint in the neighborhood.
No Booze, No Music
City Law Department attorney Zachary Kass said Monday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York the new manager agreed not to hold “ticketed music events.”
Valet parking will not be allowed in the summer months, and the agreement specifies certain hours for when music can be played at the open-air restaurant, he said.
The new spot also will operate without a liquor license, Goldman said, because a suspension by the State Liquor Authority still stands. Down the road, he said, he may try to get a wine and beer license. But for now, patrons will have to make do with iced tea, mocktails and ice cream shakes.
“It’s going to be kid-friendly,” he said, adding that like at Brother Jimmy’s locations, kids under 8 years old will eat free. Also like Brother Jimmy’s, the new joint will feature “Southern-inspired comfort food,” Goldman added.
A Late Start to Summer
Only one of the former owners of La Marina, Jerald Tenenbaum, came to the Monday hearing that ended the bankruptcy battle and put an end to his involvement in the restaurant.
He declined to comment on the case, but said he’s happy the restaurant will open once again. Tenenbaum added he gets emails every day from people asking to book La Marina or wondering when it would reopen.
To locals, the marina venue had become a staple of summertime uptown.
Goldman is hoping for a long summer so the restaurant can take advantage of every day of good weather until they have to close for the season on Sept. 30 — although they may still have private events in fall, winter and spring.
“Labor Day is usually when people do closing parties,” he said with a laugh. “For us, that will be the start.”
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