In the midst of a global pandemic that has shuttered businesses everywhere and seen the end of NYC cigar industry heavyweights like Nat Sherman, there is a rare piece of good news for NYC cigar smokers. Merchants NY Cigar Bar , which closed in December of 2016, has announced plans to reopen on December 2nd, 2020. The website is back up, complete with a new logo, new design, and much more.
One of the few in NYC to serve cigars, drinks and food in one place, Merchants Cigar Bar will return with an all-new menu of premium cigars, cocktails, and food service. The lounge will have a new look and feel too. When the cigar bar was shuttered in 2016, management redesigned the interior space to a Mad Men-esque mid-century modern vibe and relaunched as Sugar East, a bar where patrons could smoke cigarettes but not cigars. The new Merchants Cigar Bar will keep the same bones, but with updated leather furniture and new visual features.
Fernando Rodriguez, Director of Operations at Merchants Hospitality, describes the new space having a “chill, modern feel” in contrast to the older, more traditional lounge. When asked about how the venue plans to open during COVID, Rodriguez described the rigorous health and safety measures being undertaken. “We have spared no expense creating a venue that New Yorkers can feel safe and comfortable in,” Rodriguez said. “From basics like heightened sanitation and mandatory masks for staff to plexiglass separators for tables and a world class filtration system that kills airborn bacteria and viruses, we are ready to open and welcome patrons in to our new experience.”
To start, the lounge will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 5pm to 10pm. Currently, the lounge has a maximum capacity of 30 people, less than a quarter of its total capacity.
Merchants Cigar Bar is located at 1125 1st Avenue on the southwest corner of 1st ave and 62nd st on the Upper East Side.