God knows we don't go in for this whole "reporting" thing, but Curbed's readers apparently are a more intrepid lot. A Curbed operative reports in from the West Village with the full scoop on Paris Commune's eviction and subsequent relocation:
Paris Commune co-owner Hugo Uys calls the forced relocation of venerable West Village restaurant a "blessing in disguse." The new, larger space "will be definitely better for us. I try not to harbor bad feelings." Of course, a sign at Paris Commune's entrance is a little less genial: "Paris Commune is being evicted."
The 22-year-old West Village icon is a victim of the roaring real estate market on Bleeker Street, fueled by the stylish retailers clamoring for space. Uys, a fashion designer who owns half the restaurant, says his landlord was clear that she would prefer to have a quiet boutique on the first floor of her apartment building just down the block from Magnolia Bakery rather than a busy restaurant. Never mind the history or even the space, which Uys (pronounced ACE) says has house some sort of restaurant sin the 1800s.
Leases are zooming from $50 per square foot three years ago to north of $200. The owner of another Bleeker St. business estimates that Paris Communue's rent runs about $7,000 monthly, but the space should go for $9,000-$12,000 on the next round. That's less than the $20,000 monthly Ralph Lauren Men is estimated to be paying for a 1,000-square foot ground floor and basement.
The silver lining is the space Uys and partner Mayo Roe are moving into.
They've leased the site of Nadine's, a larger restaurant three blocks away on Bank St. and Greenwich. That's almost twice as large and might reduce the long lines for Paris Commune's most in-demand menu, brunch. A third partner, Laurence Isaacson. The country French dinner menu is being extensively reworked. "The food's got to be more healthful, lighter," Uys says. That means Paris Communes fabulous garlic mashed potates will still be on the
menu, but expect more low-carb options.