NEW YORK – One of the most iconic Greek restaurants in New York is closing after 25 years of operation. The final service at Molyvos will be on New Year’s Eve at the location in the Wellington Hotel on 7th Avenue where it began in 1997.
It is one of the three restaurants owned by the Livanos family in Manhattan – the family owns a total of five.
The Livanos family posted on the Molyvos Facebook page on December 2: “After nearly 25 years of serving fine Greek food to the Midtown community, we are proudly hanging up our hat on 7th avenue and saying goodbye for now.
“We have so many memories that we cherish serving elevated Greek cuisine and curating the largest and most extensive Greek wine list in the country. Our final service will be this New Year’s Eve.
“While we wish we could continue to share new memories with you here, our time at our current location has been cut short. The building will be undergoing a major renovation/demolition which will require us to close. While this is unfortunate, we are actively looking to secure a new location where we can create new memories together. Stay tuned!
“You can always join the Livanos family at our two other NYC locations: Oceana Restaurant and Hudson West Kitchen + Craft Bar. Or visit us in Westchester at City Limits – White Plains or Moderne Barn.
“In the meantime, please make reservations to come see us one last time on 7th Avenue. We are raiding Kamal Kouiri’s wine cellar to share some rare Greek gems by the glass! We hope to see you before our final service.”
Owner Nick Livanos spoke to The National Herald about Molyvos, noting that it was a collateral loss after the irreparable damage to the Wellington Hotel due to the restrictive measures and the complete lack of tourist traffic during the pandemic lockdown. In particular, the hotel property considered its reopening unprofitable, finally deciding on locking the doors, with the result that, despite the fact that the Molyvos lease had been renewed, it had to fatally follow the same path.
“We have been in this hotel for 25 years. We renewed our lease 10 months ago, but unfortunately the property of the hotel informed us that they will not open again, due to the coronavirus. We have no other choice and we must close, despite the renewal of our lease,” Livanos said.
According to the Greek-American businessman, Molyvos was doing well after the gradual return to normalcy, with capacity at levels reminiscent of the days before the pandemic.
“Work for the last 4 months was going extremely well and everything returned to normal. We have plenty of business and all the staff is back in their positions,” said Livanos.
As mentioned above, the last day of operation for Molyvos will be New Year’s Eve, during which the restaurant will say goodbye to its customers with the festive dinner program from 5:30-11 PM and a price-fixed menu at $80 per person.
With the last day of operation being on New Year’s Eve, the family of the restaurant invites all its customers to attend a New Year’s Eve party with a lot of emotion and memories.
“We will not do anything special because I’m sure the last night will be very moving. I know that many of our good customers, many Greek-Americans, and our good friends will come to say goodbye to this place that we have loved for the last 25 years. I really still wonder how so many years have passed,” concluded Livanos, adding that the gap left by Molyvos in Midtown Manhattan may soon be filled.
“We have to be patient for 6 months. We are in discussions with various locations and I am sure we will find the best building to house our new restaurant. Stay tuned, the best is yet to come,” Livanos told TNH.