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jpr54_

Babylon in River Edge

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In today's Bergen Record there was article on four businesses which are being forced to closed by Huffman-Koos-

I am sorry to learn that the restaurant is closing-I hope they relocate-

Joanne R. aka jpr54_

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For those of us who are out of town, please explain. Were they in a Huffman Koos mall that closed? Did Huffman Koos not enjoy Babylonian food?

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They were at the other end of a strip mall from the Huffman Koos. Actually, the Huffman Koos closed more than a year ago, it has since been at least two other furniture store incarnations, but Babylon and the pizza place (and a couple other storefronts) next door to it have remained throughout. Is it already closed?...

I called myself, tonight is their last night, and they don't have a new location lined up, such a shame.

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They were at the other end of a strip mall from the Huffman Koos. Actually, the Huffman Koos closed more than a year ago, it has since been at least two other furniture store incarnations, but Babylon and the pizza place (and a couple other storefronts) next door to it have remained throughout. Is it already closed?...

I called myself, tonight is their last night, and they don't have a new location lined up, such a shame.

We spoke with the owners last week during our last lunch there and they told us they were actively seeking another location but hadn't been able to find a suitable one in that area yet. Here's keeping fingers and toes crossed.

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Very disturbing. This has been one of my favorites for several years. I will miss them and realy hope they can relocate soon.

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can someone explain the details? i'm a little confused as to how a furniture store that closed 2 years ago could force a restaurant to close. :unsure:

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Just a guess (I haven't seen the news article), but I suspect that the owner plans to replace the existing building with something else.

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Yes, that's seems to be the gist of it, the landlord didn't renew Babylon's lease because they are planning on tearing down the building.

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I was going to merge this into a previous Babylon topic, but there doesn't seem to be one dedicated to it. Here are some of my previous posts about Babylon within other threads:

River Edge, Oradell, Emerson, Hackensack, Any good restaurants in these areas
Istanbul Restaurant--Ridgewood
Bergen County area: cheap recommendations, please!

I wish them the best of luck in finding a place to reopen.

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Yes, there seems to be some missing details... perhaps it's just a matter of being unable to come to terms on a lease renewal? There is a long-established pharmacy still there, and a recently-renovated and expanded deli, a pizza place, and a year-round HR Block. They all seem to be staying.

Is there a link to this article?

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Excellent article, but I couldn't find it on their Web site either (maybe it'll be posted later today; it was in the Sunday paper -- ask a neighbor for it) ... the businesses' leases are up (including the pizza place, the pharmacy and the tax preparer), and the building's owners decided not to renew. I heard that they were being put out months ago, but still, it has to be very difficult for them.

There is some "grand plan" in the works for Main Street in River Edge. The town and private developers see it as a future downtown (I guess think of Maywood's). I believe Total Wine is safe (and moves on to the next round!). But many buildings on Main Street from River Road to Route 4 are probably in play. ...

In the article, the Babylon people said theyhad spent over $150,000 to convert the hardware store that was there into their restaurant. They also own the deli next door, and spent $$$ renovating that as well. Those long-term investments will not be recouped, obviously.

As for the timeline, it went something like this: Huffman Koos goes bankrupt, sells the building to Levitz, which goes bankrupt a year later. That's how Huffman Koos is involved: the stores occupy one end of the Huffman Koos building, which was built in the 1940's, when Bergen County was apparently nothing but celery farms and a big furniture store.

~ KenP

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