NYC Jazz Landmark Closing: Say Goodbye To Lenox Lounge, At Least For Now

A great NYC jazz landmark is closing at the end of the year, forcing New Yorkers to say goodbye to the Lenox Lounge in Harlem.

The lounge has served as a home to jazz music in New York City for 70 years, but the establishment’s owner confirmed this week that the will close his doors after December 31, reports The New York Daily News.

The Lenox Lounge is a NYC landmark because the popular night spot has played host to performers like Billie Holiday and Miles Davis. The lounge’s owner, Alvin Reed, has sold the business to Richard Notar, a longtime managing partner at Nobu restaurants.

Alvin Reed has owned the closing NYC landmark since 1988 and confirmed the lounge will close, but declined to give any more information. Reed was known for restoring the club back to its former glory, but he stated his lawyer has advised him against making any additional comments about the club’s closing.

The NYC landmark’s closing will likely not signal its end, however, as Notar has assured he will not change much about it, notes The New York Times. Notar stated:

“I don’t want to change anything. There might be a hole of patch here and there that I will fix. But I am not going to bring sushi up there. I want to continue what was 70, 80 years ago. I understand this is a gem.”

Notar has said that he wants to reopen the NYC landmark and (should he and Reed “work something out”) hopefully keep the name as well. He added that he envisions the Lenox Lounge being re-established as “an old watering hole,” adding that he wants the place to have good food and music, and that it will be a place local musicians consider home, while big-name performers would stop in and play.

Not all of the regulars are excited that the NYC landmark will not be closing completely. Calvin Davis, 62 has been going to the lounge since he was 18. But he does not plan to return after December 31. Davis believes, “It’d going to lose that charm, to make it feel like a neighborhood bar. It will never be the same.”

Are you sad to hear that the NYC jazz landmark will be closing — at least temporarily?