‘Lucky Bee’ on Broome Street Succumbs to Rent Burden After Less than 2 Years
Turns out the Lucky Bee wasn’t so.
The nearly-two-year-old Thai restaurant succumbed to bonkers rents and closed over the weekend. Apparently, the monthly dole was $21,000 per month for the fifty-seat space.
News of its demise isn’t a complete shock, though. Proprietors Matty Bennett (the chef) and Rupert Noffs had briefly shut the business back in June after reportedly falling behind on the rent and receiving an eviction notice. They did, however, try to forge an accord with co-landlords Samy Mahfar and Michael Forrest (Lower East Side BID Chairman of the Board) to stay afloat.
When asked at the time if business was at all struggling, Noffs told us, “I wouldn’t say business is struggling as we are always busy – but rent and taxes are high – welcome to Manhattan in 2017!”
He wasn’t kidding. Noffs went on to say attempts to negotiate a stay were futile – “We simply could not run our business, create new ideas, recipes and train new staff with these guys on our backs sending eviction notices – without a sealed envelope – once a month. Plus the $21K and the addition of a $60K deposit, which we didn’t know what was for.”
It certainly hasn’t been easy for Bennett and Noffs from the get-go. For instance, upon opening in February 2016, the first eight weeks were spent without gas hookup.
The Lucky Bee replaced the popular, yet rough-around-the-edges Jin Sushi, which faded after a previous rent hike in August 2015.