The restaurant at Central Park’s Loeb Boathouse has shut down— albeit not permanently— though you wont be dining inside the iconic space anytime soon. The Loeb Boathouse has shut down and a sign tied to the metal gates leading to the venue now read the “cafe, restaurant and row boats will be closed until further notice.”
The closure did not come as a surprise, in a filing with the state, the current operator of the boathouse’s restaurant blamed shrinking profit margins and the rising costs for the shutdown — which was expected to happen by October 16th— resulting in the layoffs of 163 employees.
The shut down will not be a permanent one, according to NYC Parks, which tells Upper East Site that events already scheduled at the boathouse — including some weddings — will continue to be held in the Boathouse’s event space through the end of the year.
The search for a new operator began last August and according to a request for proposals, the new restaurant and snack bar are expected to be up and running by next spring or summer.
“We seek to identify a new operator as quickly as possible during these next few months,” NYC Parks told Upper East Site on Monday.
The Boathouse’s restaurant had only been back open, serving customers, since late March 2021 — following a year-long closure which began at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, when indoor dining was restricted.
Opened in its current form in 1954 and located on the eastern shore of the Central Park Lake, the Loeb Boathouse has spent decades serving ‘as a unique dining and recreational amenity in one of New York City’s most picturesque locations,’ according to New York City Parks.