After Thirty Years Life Café Shuts Its Doors

Life Cafe Jonathan LarsonLife in the East Village will definitely not be the same without the iconic Life Café around to sit a while and watch the people go by. After thirty years on Avenue B and East 10th Street right across the street from Tompkins Square Park.

The reason for the closure was posted on the restaurant’s web site, explaining that repairs which were promised by the landlord a year ago, which were never carried out, is forcing the closure until the crucial repairs are completed. The website posted that: “On this auspicious day of 9/11/11, after 30 years in business, I am closing Life Cafe East Village this evening ‘until further notice.”

It is expected that after the repairs are finished the café will re-open:
“We anticipate a rebirth of Life Cafe sometime in the near future. Thank you for your loyal patronage over the years.”

Jonathan Larson wrote parts of his Broadway hit “RENT” while sitting at a table in the Life Café, and the restaurant itself was also a feature of the action in the show.

“Life Cafe became a space for artists to meet, talk, exchange ideas and perform,” read a passage from the restaurant’s website. “On cold winter days, people came to keep warm because their apartments were freezing cold.”