28 June 2009

Stores Die, Websites Live On

Many a landmark New York shop, restaurant, bar or business has succumbed since I began this blog three-and-a-half years ago. Some pass away without a trace, paved over by Gotham's ceaseless, heartless march of progress. Some leave slight architectural hints of their existence. Others live on in the spectral twilight of the Internet.

Most shops that meet their final end quickly bring the curtain down on their website. Take, for instance, the site of Arnold Hatters, which shuttered a month ago. No sooner had it ceased operation than the owners took down all Internet info except for a succinct letter of farewell.

Other stores, however, aren't so thorough in cleaning up their cybershop. Joseph Patelson Music Shop closed its doors a couple weeks ago, but on its website, there's still a sale going on. Manny's Music ended its 83-year-long run on May 31, but www.mannysmusic.com is still open for business and ready to answer your e-mails.

OK, OK, those places only closes a little while ago. So we should give them time, right? Well, what about the Upper West Side's Cafe Mozart, which still a picture gallery, menus, applications for gift certificates and reservation page? It closed in summer 2008. And the vastly missed Vesuvio Bakery's site still boasts a menu from its final incarnation as a cafe. Maybe the owners are just too heartbroken to attend to details such as these. So they stay there, to break our hearts.

Another website floating out there without any material foothold on Earth is the one for Florent, the legendary Meatpacking diner that closed in 2008. But, then, there are rumors Morellet is reopening in a different location. So maybe he has his reasons for keeping the site up.


Sedge said...

Seems to me, when you have poured your heart, soul, all your money, and all the hours in the day into your business, only to lose it when your landlord raised the rent by 300%, that yes, one would indeed be too broken to think of web sites. Maybe, if the store did a real business online, but for a resaurant or bar, who didn't make money that way, it would be far from their wounded mind. I kind of like to see those sites around, as so often the condo or bank that takes over the space leaves no trace of the fomer busniess.

Brooks of Sheffield said...

I'm sure you're right, Sedge. I meant no offense by the post.

Sedge said...

None taken Brooks! Just clinging to any little thing that I can that speaks to the City that existed before I lived in it.