NYC's high rents force some favorite restaurants to close

- Popular Eateries in the West Village and the Upper West Side of Manhattan have become the latest victims of New York's ultra-competitive restaurant scene. Restaurant owners say turning a profit is getting harder and harder.

A sign on the front door and a disconnected phone line reveal that Isabella's, one of the Upper West Side's most beloved restaurants, is permanently closed. People walking by watched as the restaurant was packed into a moving van. They were heartbroken to see it go.

The Mediterranean restaurant on 77th Street and Columbus Avenue has been around for more than 30 years. B.R. Guest Hospitality said the dining spot's lease was up for renewal and that "the landlord chose not to renew."

On the corner where Larry David and co-workers sat for an episode of "Curb Your Enthusiasm," all of the outdoor seating has been packed away. The closing of the staple raises the question among residents: if this restaurant can't survive, what can?

Good in the West Village -- another Manhattan staple -- just closed after nearly 20 years in business.

Konrad Putzier, a reporter for The Real Deal, says high rent is forcing a lot of these restaurants out of business. But with high rent comes high vacancy rates. Putzier says that eventually, landlords will have to adjust their expectations because only so many chain stores and franchise restaurants can move into these spaces. He says the city still needs family restaurants and variety in retail.

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