Leases  ·  Retail

RFR Closing F&B at Paramount Hotel


Last week, human resources officials from Paramount Hotel and its management company Highgate announced to the food and beverage workers at the landmark hotel that their services would no longer be needed.

RFR Realty, the property’s owner, will be closing the Paramount Bar & Grill with its American comfort food and drinks as well as room service (all union jobs) and Corso Coffee concession (non-union jobs) at the hotel at 234 West 46th Street, between Broadway and Eighth Avenue.

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The union workers—which total about 40—were notified today that the official closure will be some time during the week of March 16, although operations could cease earlier, according to a hotel employee. Officials offered workers buyout packages at today’s meeting. There was also talk of a grab-and-go food concession at the property in the future, although details were scant.

Food and beverage services have been slow since the closing of the Queen of the Night show in Billy Rose’s Diamond Horseshoe nightclub basement space a couple of years ago, the source said, when theatergoers would pop into Paramount Bar & Grill for a drink or a meal. Since then, the downstairs space has been vacant but for infrequent private events, and business at the Paramount Bar & Grill upstairs has been slow.

Change is afoot at the property, which was once owned by Ian Schrager. Last month, Sony Corporation and Blue Note Media Group announced that they would be taking over the 12,000-square-foot former Diamond Horseshoe space with a new music venue called Sony Hall to open in spring 2018. It has the capacity for 1,000 people standing and 500 seated, and will feature a full-service restaurant and bar.

img 03081 RFR Closing F&B at Paramount Hotel
Paramount Bar & Grill inside the Paramount Hotel.

“It will serve as a staging ground for recording content, testing new and exciting technology, promoting emerging artists, and more,” Midori Tomita, a vice president in charge of UX business development for brand strategy at Sony, said in a press release about the partnership.

Paramount Hotel opened in 1928 with 600 keys and became a landmark in 2009 after being renovated, as per The New York Times.

A spokesman for RFR said the company declined to comment and no one from Highgate responded to an inquiry.

A spokesman for New York Hotel & Motel Trades Council, the union for hotel workers in New York and Northern New Jersey, which was in attendance at the meetings, didn’t immediately respond with a comment.