Back in June, thanks to a tipster, I first reported the intel that the original Palm restaurant was gone for good.
Earlier this week, The Real Deal confirmed that the owners have sold the building for $5.9 million. But will it be preserved? Will the historic, priceless murals be cherished and maintained for the next generations? Don't hold your breath.
Yesterday, Eater posted photos of the restaurant's interior, its wonderful murals painted over, destroyed. One of the buyers, Steven Kachanian (of the apparently not ironically named Klosed Properties), told The Real Deal, “We’re working with some high-end tenants looking to do some major work to the property."
What the fuck is wrong with people? This was the original Palm restaurant, 90 years old, gorgeous, storied, beloved, its walls covered in caricatures hand-drawn by some of America's most celebrated cartoonists. This was a one-of-a-kind treasure, never to be reproduced. You can't buy this kind of uniqueness, it has to grow organically and mature over time--over a century of time. But we're living in a fucked up city where fucked up people do fucked up things like destroy art, culture, and history--all in one fell swoop if they can manage it--just to replace it with something banal and miserable from the monoculture of the day.
If people can't see the value in preserving something so obviously exquisite and exceptional like the Palm, there is no hope. Just put in a cupcake shop already and call it a day.
The Palm is Vanishing
Update: Zagat published a statement from the owners. In part, it reads: "The beloved hand painted caricatures were housed on walls made of plaster, which made it impossible to remove the caricatures for preservation purposes. Photos and videos have been taken of the famous walls prior to the sale for our internal preservation purposes."