Restaurateur Shelley Fireman Said He’s “Scared” [bleep]Les” by the Times Square shooting that landed on page one of The Post — but that wasn’t enough to stop him from reopening Bond 45, his West 46th Street Italian eatery that’s been closed since March 2020.
Jumbo-sized favorites of theater-goers, tourists and showbiz boldface reopened their doors last week, while other big Times Square-area eateries such as Sardi’s, Carmine’s, Barbetta and Virgil’s BBQ are dark.
“The world is not ending so quickly,” the fireman said of the recent rise in crime. There was no incident of a tourist being injured by a ricochet shot outside The Marriott Marquis hotel on Sunday near Bond 45, he said.
Firemen said three factors prompted them to reopen the nearly 300-seat, two-level trattoria at the Edison Hotel. The Art Deco-style venue features spacious leather booths, dark wood trim, colorful murals, and a ritually nude female likeness sculpted by the firemen themselves.
“The hotel asked us,” he said. “We have PPP money which we have to spend. And the streets are crowded again, even before Broadway returns in September,” he said.
Although office workers are yet to return in large numbers and most theaters will not reopen until September, Times Square’s foot traffic has increased from 33,000 daily visitors in April 2020 to more than 140,000 last month and even more on weekends. Gone.
“We were obliged to give it our shot,” said the fireman, borrowing a line from the great show-stopping number from “Hamilton,” which sees Bond lower the block to 45.
Bond languished in the fall of 2018 at its new location at 45 West 46th Street, four years after its former landlord didn’t renew its lease on West 45th Street. It quickly attracted actors, musicians, and producers from “Hamilton” at the Richard Rodgers Theater and two other shows on the block.
The restaurant hosted bashes for “Hamilton,” “Dear Evan Hansen” and “Kinky Boots.” Late night drop-ins included opera greats Renee Fleming, Barry Manilow, Jimmy Buffett and Vanessa Williams.
Times Square Alliance president Tom Harris lauded the reopening. “With the opening of the iconic Bond 45 in the heart of Times Square, we move closer to the city’s recovery,” he said.