You are reading

Historic Woodhaven Tavern to Close Sunday After Nearly 200-Year Run

Neir’s Tavern at 87-48 78th St. (Facebook)

Jan. 9, 2020 By Kristen Torres

The historic Neir’s Tavern will be shutting its doors this Sunday after nearly 200 years of catering to locals in the Woodhaven community.

Owner Loy Gordon said in a goodbye email that he was forced to shut down the bar, located at 87-48 78th Street, after being unable to negotiate an affordable, long-term lease for the iconic establishment.

“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. “Neir’s Tavern is losing money and I don’t have the time to help to overcome it.”

Gordon has been the owner of Neir’s Tavern for the last 11 years, but unaffordable rent hikes coupled with a decline in sales forced him to close the bar down for good.

Previous efforts to designate the establishment as a historical landmark by community organizers also failed after the Landmark Preservation Commission ruled it did not “rise to the level of significance to warrant landmark status.”

The Woodhaven Cultural and Historical Society released a statement via Twitter on Thursday calling the closing of Neir’s Tavern “a loss to the history of New York City.”

Neir’s Tavern was founded in 1829 as The Blue Pump Room and was renamed The Old Abbey in 1835 before becoming Neir’s Tavern in 1898. It was allegedly the first place Mae West performed, and was the hangout of choice for businessmen such as Fred Trump.

The Tavern also appeared in a few scenes from popular film “Goodfellas” and was featured in an episode of Anthony Bourdain’s “Parts Unknown.”

Neirs Tavern is set to serve its last customers on Jan. 12.

email the author: [email protected]


Click for Comments 

When did the landlord become responsible for making sure that your business stays open?? I’ll take the heat for this comment but if your lease is up and the landlord is willing to leave it empty or find a new tenant how can the Mayor or anyone else force his hand? Do you people not see something wrong with taking away the landlord’s right? No, you don’t because the fight is always for the person we feel is the victim.. The landlord has the right to seek market rates once the lease is up. I’m sorry but who’s in the business of not making the most money possible out of their investment to be “nice”. Business is Business…

Dr. Barry Feinstein

True but it seems the locals only care once the business is leaving or gone. If they cared and patronized these establishments while they’re in business they would not close their doors and remain open.

Chris Pizzolorusso

Landlords want to make as much as they can, but greed is usually what its about. Sorry to hear this news. Its a historical place in a historical neighborhood. 😭

Packard Streeter

Can we find out why the rent is outrageous and unsustainable? Has the landlord been interviewed?


Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Popular places where you can watch the Super Bowl in Queens

Feb. 2, 2023 By Tammy Scileppi

Hey, football fans! Game time is fast approaching, and across the city and here in Queens, you can feel the excitement brewing as the two teams prepare to take the field on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 12. So, kick back and watch the big game, and don’t miss Rihanna’s exciting performance during halftime. 

NYPD’s Hate Crime Task Force investigating vandalism at Forest Hills church that has been targeted in the past

The NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating a case of criminal mischief at a Forest Hills house of worship in which a vandal threw a rock to intentionally damage its glass front door, according to authorities.

Police say that just before 4 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 29, police from the 112th Precinct were called to Grace Lutheran Church, located at 103-15 Union Tpke., after a man threw a rock and damaged the church’s front door.

Borough president hears from community members on budget needs throughout Queens

During a two-day public hearing on the mayor’s 2024 preliminary budget, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. listened to testimonies from 14 community board representatives, community stakeholders and members of the public on where the money should be spent in Queens. 

The public hearings were held both in-person and via Zoom on Monday, Jan. 30, and Tuesday, Jan. 31, at Queens Borough Hall. The testimonials will be used to develop the Queens Borough Board’s FY24 preliminary budget priorities in the coming weeks. 

‘He didn’t deserve to die’: Borough President Richards leads emotional candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards held a candlelight vigil for Tyre Nichols outside Queens Borough Hall Monday, Jan. 30 after Nichols’ death at the hands of police officers in Memphis, Tenn., made national headlines for the brutality in which the officers beat him.

Almost immediately after news broke about Nichols’ death, the Memphis police officers who beat him to death were fired and charged with murder. The police department released the body cam footage of the fatal beating on Jan. 27, but many people, including some at the vigil, have refused to watch it due to its extremely graphic nature.

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.