This is the last week that Mr. And Mrs. Balabanis will be operating the Tailor shop at the Chelsea Hotel. They’ve been in the Chelsea neighborhood for 31 years – 21 of those years were spent at a tiny store front in the Hotel. At first, he was over on 25th Street and he was Stanley Bard’s tailor. Stanley invited him to move his business to the Hotel. Stanley, whom was always the dapper dresser, obviously would want his tailor near by.
Here is how the ouster of the Bard family has played out for the Balabanis. The first group of managers (Richard Born & Ira Drukier) wouldn’t even come in and talk to him. When they finally did get around to stopping by, all they did was start taking measurements and tell him they were going to break down the wall between his shop and Stanley’s office and open a bar in that space.
Now, he said, there are other people (not the Bards) who want to talk to him and they want him to pay more rent and take a short lease. He said “It’s too late to talk.” He doesn’t want a short lease and his business doesn’t make a lot of money. He’s retiring and going to Greece. Now there will be another empty retail space at the Chelsea. So much for making all of that money by optimizing the retail spaces.
Renowned Blues man Vlad, who plays the guitar on 23rd & 7th, has a suggestion for the tiny space. He’d like to see a pay toilet installed. That’s something that would be useful for him since he’s a street musician. We second Vlad! We think a pay toilet is the ticket to helping Marlene Krauss and David Elder get rich off of the Chelsea. They can’t have a bar anyway because of El Quixote’s non-compete clause, what else are they gonna put in there!
Our friend and fellow blogger across the street, James Wagner, really needs to update his history of the retail establishments on this block of