Playland Sells for $2.3M

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Playland has been sold. After about a year since its closing, the building of the former Playland Motel and Restaurant has sold for a whopping $2.3 million.

The group of buyers include locals Javed Rambaran, Adam Ecker, and an established local business owner choosing to remain anonymous for now and a Manhattan-based developer, Thomas McClcoskey.  It is expected the upstairs rooms will be redesigned and converted into residential units, and the ground floor will be leased to an experienced restaurant operator. CPEX Real Estate made the sale for $2,315,000 total.

CPEX’s Mixed-Use Sales Team, consisting of Managing Director Lawrence Sarn and Associate Chase Reiter, and Associate Catherine Vintonik of the CPEX Development and Conversion Sales Team represented the seller, Cayuga Capital, and procured the buyer, a group of local investors.

“A neighborhood icon after Hurricane Sandy, the former Playland Hotel received a tremendous amount of interest from prospective buyers,” Sarn said. “Ultimately, this was a unique opportunity for local investors to acquire a valuable corner property with a high volume of summertime subway riders and foot traffic. They have already begun to speak with potential food operators and other useful amenities to add to the neighborhood.”

“This transaction demonstrates the buyer’s confidence in the ongoing development of Rockaway Beach,” Reiter added. “The acquisition gives them an opportunity to contribute to the neighborhood’s growth while revitalizing an asset with a rich history and close ties to the Rockaway community.”

Located on the corner of Beach 98th Street and Rockaways Beach Boulevard, the 7,200 square-foot building, formerly the Tap and Grill and Boggiano’s before that, was purchased by Cayuga Capital Management principal, Jamie Wiseman in September 2012 for $1.3 million. The restaurant, bar, hotel and backyard space opened in July 2013, after renovations following Hurricane Sandy. In its time there, Playland was a hotspot for visitors and locals alike and became known as a party place. In May 2015, Dan Cipriani stepped in to overhaul the restaurant and bar portion of the building and turned around its late-night party reputation to more of a family-friendly spot. Despite the changes, complaints by neighbors eventually led to the backyard space being shut down, which Cipriani said killed the business and he decided to leave. At the time, rumors were circulating that the upstairs hotel rooms were also being used to house the homeless, which led to a public outcry by local residents, who felt blindsided by the sudden change. Cayuga Capital said the renting to the homeless population was temporary, and eventually the property was left vacant and put up for sale.

With the two-story, 7,137-square foot property, the new owners plan to convert the 12 second-floor hotel rooms into residential units and lease the three commercial retail spaces on the ground level to restaurateurs and other possible uses.

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