Tag Archives: George Makkos

Terrace on the Park lease to be up for bid


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

Terrace on the Park operators want to upgrade the facility and are looking to get a new lease on the popular and historic Flushing Meadows-Corona Park catering hall to do so.

Their contract with the city’s Parks Department expires next March, officials said.

The department has issued a new Request for Proposals (RFP) for the 52-11 111th Street site.

“While the current concessionaire has invested more than $8 million in capital improvements, exceeding the requirements of their license agreement, it is clear that additional infrastructure investments are needed,” a Parks spokesperson said.

George Makkos, co-owner of Terrace on the Park, said they have invested $12 million so far to better the catering hall.

But the 100,000-square-foot building needs “millions” of dollars more in capital improvements which cannot be done under the looming lease expiration date, Makkos said.

“Given the size and complexity of the building, the money that we will need to spend will never be recovered in the time, in the lease that we have left,” he said.

Makkos said he and co-owner Jimmy Kaloidis want to retain and upgrade the catering hall.

“We’re trying to extend the lease for a new term so we can spend what’s needed and a lot more to bring the building to a state which is sufficient so it can compete in the wedding and corporate banquet business as it should,” he said.

The city must launch a procedural public bidding process.

“It’s a huge building. Everything becomes a big deal,” Makkos said. “A simple remodeling could cost a million dollars.”

The proposal process is competitive but open to any entities, including the current concessionaire, the Parks Department said.

Terrace on the Park was built for the 1964 World’s Fair and has been a catering hall for nearly 50 years.

The current contract was scheduled to expire in March 2020 but was amended to expire in March 2014, officials said.

A Parks Department spokesperson said the change is not related to any development proposals at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.

 

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Bayside restaurant Vivaldi celebrates grand opening


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Melissa Chan

Vivaldi, at 201-10 Cross Island Parkway, celebrated its grand opening on July 23.

“I feel excellent for being able to bring it to opening day today,” said operator George Makkos. “I’m happy to be here.”

The restaurant replaces Patrizia’s of Bayside. It was also once Caffe on the Green and Valentino’s on the Green.

 

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New owner looks to end unlucky streak at former Patrizia’s of Bayside site


| mchan@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Melissa Chan

The new owner of a luckless Bayside restaurant site is determined to end a streak of bad breaks at the locale.

“We’re going to bring it back to its original glory,” said George Makkos, whose newest restaurant, Vivaldi, replaces Patrizia’s of Bayside.

The 201-10 Cross Island Parkway building had been a revolving door of new management since the popular Caffe on the Green closed in 2009.

Valentino’s on the Green took over after that, but was soon followed by Patrizia’s. Patrizia’s shut down after less than a year in business.

Vivaldi is set to open for dinner in the first or second week of June.

“I don’t want to compare myself to anybody,” said Makkos, 51, of Manhattan. “I cannot speak for anybody else. I can only speak for what I stand for, and I stand for quality, perfection, impeccable service and attentiveness to the customer.”

A Parks Department spokesperson said Makkos has a record of running successful upscale restaurants. The president of 123 Restaurant Group, he operates several wedding venues and catering halls in Queens, Manhattan and Long Island, including Battery Gardens and the Venetian Yacht Club.

Makkos said the menu will feature homemade dishes cooked to original recipes concocted by Caffe’s former executive chef. He added that Vivaldi will use the finest ingredients on everything including brick-oven pizza.

While the menu and prices have not been finalized, Makkos said there will be “gracious portions for a value.” Food options will also change to refl ect the season, with lighter dishes in the summer.

Vivaldi is in the process of obtaining a liquor license. The restaurant will be open seven days a week. After the June launch, it will expand to offer lunch and catering along with dinner.

 

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Parks Department finds new operator for Patrizia’s of Bayside


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

Patrizia’s of Bayside, the former site of Caffe on the Green and Valentino’s on the Green, has found a new operator, according to Queens Parks Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski.

“We are very excited that a new concessionaire will be operating the former Valentino’s on the Green and look forward to the reopening,” said Lewandowski.

The new operator, 123 Restaurant Group is owned by George Makkos and Paul Nicaji. the pair who run the successful Battery Gardens restaurant in Battery Park. Makkos is also the operator of Terrace on the Park, located in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park.

Although 123 has not decided on a name for the future Italian restaurant, they are interested in keeping the Valentino connection and may call it Villa Valentino, said Lewandowski.

It is expected to open in about two months after they obtain a liquor license transfer and make some minor changes to the interior.

 

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