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Historic Neir’s Tavern Saved in Last Minute Deal Brokered by Elected Officials

Neir’s Tavern (Photo: Neir’s Tavern Facebook)

Jan. 13, 2020 By Kristen Torres

Neir’s Tavern—which has been serving customers in Woodhaven for nearly 200 years—won’t be closing after all, city officials announced on Friday.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city reached a “handshake agreement” between owner Loycent Gordon, the Queens Chamber of Commerce and property owners Ken and Henry Shi that will keep the historic bar in business.

“New York City’s small businesses are what make this city so special, and as the city’s oldest bar, Neir’s Tavern leads the pack,” de Blasio said in a statement. “I’m proud to have helped keep the doors open so New Yorkers can continue to enjoy a place that has meant so much to so many over the years.”

Council Member Robert Holden and Assembly Member Mike Miller also helped broker the deal.

“We can all sleep well knowing that this beloved 190-year institution will not have to close its doors and can continue serving the community,”  Holden said in a statement Friday.

Gordon has owned the pub for the past decade and said last week that he was being forced to shut Neir’s down after steep rent hikes and a dip in sales left him with no money to continue operating the bar.

“Everyday I pray I would find a way to dedicate more time to overcome these challenges until yesterday I had to face the truth,” Gordon wrote in an email last Thursday. “Neir’s Tavern is losing money and I don’t have the time to help to overcome it.”

The bar first opened in 1829 as the Blue Pump Room before being renamed Neir’s Tavern in 1898. It was featured in a few scenes from popular film “Goodfellas” and in an episode of Anthony Bourdain’s “Parts Unknown.”

(Elected officials and the Queens Chamber of Commerce announce deal that will keep historic bar open Photo: Courtesy of Queens Chamber of Commerce)

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Mr G

It’s about time the city steps in to control these unreasonable rent hikes … most of these small businesses have triple net leases… do most readers know what that means ? The tenant pays his share of the property taxes of the LANDLORDS property … not fair ….I’ve owned a retail store … most readers have no clue what it takes to run a Mom and Pop… so please support your local stores thanks


Wildly curious as to what a “handshake agreement” between politicians and business owners entails.


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