Gowanus Lounge: Serving Brooklyn

Thor Invites Endless Grief & Bad PR by Evicting Lola Staar

January 8th, 2009 · 3 Comments

Here’s a sad excerpt from Lola Staar’s latest email. We like Lola and appreciate her unbridled–if sometimes over the top–enthusiasm for and boosterism of Coney Island. Once again, her outspokenness has led to a kick in the ass from Thor Equities. This was news on Christmas Eve. But this is the story in Lola’s own words:

It breaks my heart to tell you that, as a result of some pathetic bargaining game with the City, Thor Equities is evicting me from my shop on the boardwalk. Nine years ago, I opened my fabulous Lola Staar Souvenir boutique on the boardwalk in Coney Island. For nine years I have worked with every bit of energy and passion inside me to grow my business and to contribute in a positive way to the community of Coney Island. Owning my shop on the boardwalk has been the most challenging and extraordinary experience of my life. A few days before Christmas, Thor Equities (the developers who have bought most of the property in the amusement area of Coney Island) began evicting longtime tenants by cutting off locks, asking for triple the rent, or refusing to discuss 2009 leases. On Christmas Eve, huge custom-sized “Space For Lease” banners were put up on Ruby’s Bar & Grill, Nathan’s Boardwalk store, Cha Cha’s, and others businesses on Thor’s property in Coney Island. I was evicted from my shop because of my involvement in Save Coney Island and my opposition to Thor’s plan to build condos, high rises and shopping malls in Coney Island’s historic Amusement District.

We know Lola and we know she will not go quietly into the Coney night. Perhaps, Mr. Sitt enjoys the thrill of public battle and diminutive, chatty red headed fashion designers leading protests against him. Screwing with Dianna Carlin is a bad idea, “Joey Coney Island.” All we can say is stock up on Prilosec and, perhaps, Valium, Xanax and Ativan.

Tags: coney island · Uncategorized

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jack // Jan 8, 2009 at 1:03 am

    She has every right to be pissed. I’m pretty much at a loss to understand Thor’s business strategy beyond desperation. I passed by the former home of M. Gordon Novelty in Gramercy today, and nothing there but a scaffolding with “nice” signs promising “great” things.

    Can anyone actually cite one Thor project in NYC that is healthy and has been around for a few years?

  • 2 electricia // Jan 8, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    no, I can’t. The sign company that produces and put up Thor’s Space for Lease banners in Coney and elsewhere must be doing very well though. I see the banners all over Manhattan too, including this illustrated one that went up a few weeks ago in the Meat Packing district. How much do you figure something like this goes for?

  • 3 d // Jan 10, 2009 at 12:43 am

    Lola’s is one of my favorite stores. Shame on Thor.