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Old 06-05-2010, 07:40 PM
 
12,120 posts, read 27,577,644 times
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This is something I always remember back when i was a teen. For my first job our boss drove us in to the theater district and took us to a nice restaurant on W 47th street because he knew the owner. The restaurant was on a, for the most part, decent theater street (right across from the old Biltmore Theater), between Broadway and 8th, but very close to the corner of 8th Avenue

As soon as we walked in the owner was grumbling and spent most of the time there telling us that he was losing business because his customers did not want to come to his restaurant because of it's closeness to 8th Avenue. He spoke of being held up when he was opening his restaurant. I was kind of puzzled because, he was located on an OK theater street, and 47th street was up into the theater area. Not like he was on 42nd street and 8th

So my question is, if it were 1980 right now and you had the opportunity to dine at this location, would you go there, or would you pass it up and go elsewhere?

Remember Mama Leone's was at the same location just a block up. Did that stop people from going there?

I guess what I'm trying to ask was the theater area THAT bad 30 years ago to the extent that one did not feel safe on a normal theater street?
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Old 06-05-2010, 08:25 PM
 
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Yes, it was. Times Square --- including the theatre district --- was rife with crime. Granted, 42nd Street was the epicenter, but the entire area was undesirable.

As for Mama Leones, that was located inside the Milford Plaza hotel so it was a bit more secure than a restaurant on a street and less likely to be robbed.

When Rudy Guiliani got in office, he cleaned up the area and it's a great place now. There are still "shade" on 8th Avenue, but it's nowhere near what it was back then.
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Old 06-06-2010, 01:45 PM
 
Location: Red Hook Brooklyn-winter Derby Line Vermont-summer
280 posts, read 1,049,114 times
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I was a teenager who grew up in the city and back then I wasn't too concerned about the shady element.I knew not to give money to,or even pay attention to the guys lining 42nd street hawking coke,smoke! That said ..If I were an adult in 1980 I would not even dare venture to the old 42nd steet area,especially w/kids.
But when I was 14 where else could you go to check out a peep show,get blasted on all the beer,wine or sangria you could drink at Beefsteak Charlies and do it all without even a fake ID or 2nd glance?
I remember going to Mama Leones as a younger kid and I don't think it was in a hotel at the time.I think it had it's own building.I remember thinking this place had to be good if it advertised in the Daily News..I also remember the lasagna as being pretty good and enjoyed the wandering Italian band coming to the table during dinner.Ah good times.
However as an adult in 2010, I won't be eating or hanging around there because it is way too commercial.

Last edited by nyctovt; 06-06-2010 at 01:49 PM.. Reason: Corrected sentence structure
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Old 06-06-2010, 02:25 PM
 
12,120 posts, read 27,577,644 times
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Default mama's

moved to the Milford Plz in 1988 and lasted 6 years before going out of business. Prior to 88 it was on W 48th between B;way and 8th
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Old 06-06-2010, 07:11 PM
 
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Default Thirty Years Ago

You should rent this movie "They All Laughted". It has a lot of scenes of Times Square in June and July of 1980 in it. The movie stars John Ritter and Dorothy Stratten. Back when Times Square was an adult wonderland.
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Old 06-06-2010, 07:34 PM
 
12,120 posts, read 27,577,644 times
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Default I never heard of that one but I heard of Times

Square which was from 80 and wasn't John Ritter in Fade To Black, also in 80?
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Old 06-06-2010, 08:37 PM
 
66 posts, read 240,183 times
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Times Sq was a cesspool back then, but it also wasn't Disneyland like it is today. In other words, it was seedy, but I'm not sure the atmo now is so great because it's so touristy and bland.
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