Corner (23 3rd Ave): King's Magazine,
all-night newsstand. DJ Lenny M's Music World,
mix tapes and CDs, has a niche here.
5: Yakitori Taisho, cool Japanese
restaurant; Ian's fantasy clothing
7: Klong, industrial Thai; was
Religious Sex, fetish fashions now online.
9: OH! Taisho was In the Woods, things made of wood.
Included Phenomenature, crystal and mineral boutique.
Upstairs is Sing Sing Karaoke.
11: For serious comic
book readers and people who like
plastic toys. Used as the exterior of the
video store in Men in Black II.
Also Japas, hidden karaoke bar.
The Iron Fairies, Australian metalcraft, candles and soaps.
Until recently housed a
series of music stores (Joe's CDs, 13 CDs, Venus Records).
Before that it was the original home of St. Marks Books.
In 1964, after his obscenity trial,
Lenny Bruce lived in the building. In 1959, novelist
Robert Stone had an apartment here.
15: Je'Bon noodle house at various times
used to be Coney Island High, prime punk venue in the 1990s where Iggy Pop, Ramones, Beastie Boys etc. played. Earlier was Green Door NYC and Boy Bar. Long ago was Paul McGregor's Haircutters, said to have originated
the Shag haircut.
17: Mandala Tibetan Store. On this
site starting in 1885 was the Hebrew-Christian
Church, for converting Jews to Christianity.
19-25: These buildings built in 1833 became a
German musical club, later known as Arlington Hall.
The hall was famous for a
shootout in 1914 between Dopey Benny
Fein's gang and Jack Sirocco's mob; Fein's managing to kill
only one elderly bystander spelled the
end of the Jewish mob's reign in the neighborhood.
The site became the Polish National Home,
known as The Dom, which turned into a
popular bar. Later the psychedelic
Electric Circus, featuring Andy
Warhol's Exploding Plastic Inevitable with the
Velvet Underground, Jimi Hendrix, the Grateful Dead,
Jefferson Airplane, Blue Oyster Cult etc.
The Electric Circus' owner died and left the
building to the club's coatchecker,
Joyce Hartwell, who turned it into the
All-Craft Center, a community rehab center.
In 2003, it underwent a drastic renovation
to turn it into mall-style franchise space;
it now houses St. Marks Market grocery store;
Grand Sichuan, popular local Chinese chain;
and, for a time, a CBGB's nostalgia outlet.
The brick is recycled from an old mill upstate.
Search & Destroy clothing is
in the one part of the
hall that wasn't redone.
Below is Kenka, a punky Japanese restaurant.
bear-like animal in front is actually
tanuki, or raccoon dog, believed in Japanese
folklore to have magical
shapechanging powers and a fondness for
Perched atop the structure is a much more modern-looking luxury condo building; Helen Mirren is said to have lived here.
27: The Sock Man, the place
for socks; Medusa Tattoo.
Was the Children's Aid Society's Girls' Lodging House.
29: Bull McCabe's bar, formerly Finnian's Rainbow
31: Zen Noodle Cafe, with giant upside-down fish on
the roof. Was The Pit, fetish store. Also St. Marks Deli Grocery.
33: Rockit Scientist Records,
used and new CDs with an emphasis
on the pyschedelic. Used to be Smash
and briefly Norman's 2; earlier was
a punk rock boutique that spawned a
cosmetics line. Dan Aykroyd owned
Ray's Occult Books here in
Ghostbusters II. Andromeda Tattoos,
upstairs, is noted for its
disturbing mannequin. The Velvet Underground listened
to the master of their first album here in 1966, in the apartment of poet Lewis Warsh.
BAMN!, a new
Corner: Was the St. Marks
Cinema; residents unsuccessfully fought
replacement with Steve's Ice Cream.
Steve's became a Gap outlet, which then
closed. Now a pizzeria and JAS Mart, a
Japanese food court/grocery/video store.
Kim's Video used to be upstairs; now St Marx Cafe.