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April Glass Looks for New Location

Photo: QueensPost

Jan. 19, 2011 By Christian Murray

The owner of April Glass has decided to close her Queens Blvd store and seek new space due to hefty rent and a slowing economy.

Patrice Lee, who has operated April Glass at 44-09 Queens Blvd since 2003, said today that her Queens Blvd rent was too high to run a successful business.

Lee had been paying $4,700 a month in rent, prior to making her decision to relocate. She said her current landlord agreed to lower it to $4,000 after she made her decision, but the numbers still did not work.

“It was a tough decision to decide to move. I have been crying every day. I love this location. However, I have customers who tell me that they will follow me where ever I go which makes it easier.”

And Lee has no intention to leave Sunnyside. “I will be moving somewhere else in neighborhood and it will be a quick turnaround.”

Lee has already looked closely at a couple of places. She said she is looking for space that is visible to Queens Blvd where the rent is about $3,000 per month.

She said that landlords are asking for a lot in rent. For example, where Jennifer Accessories was located on Queens Blvd, the landlord seeks $3,000 in rent, and that is for a 400 sqf space.

Lee was paying $3,700 for her 1,000 sqf when she first moved in 2003 and it crept up from there.

However, in 2003, the economy was in much better shape and the recent downturn has put a dent in business. Sales were down 7% in 2010 compared to 2009—and were off 10-12% from the heydays of 2003-2004.

Several businesses on that Queens Blvd block (between 44th and 45th) have closed, from Rose Restaurant, Boost and the OTB. Meanwhile, Sonali, the Indian restaurant, has not been open for more than 2 months and most believe it is out of business.

Lee started her business in 1996 when she started to hand paint glass items in her Celtic Park apartment and sell them wholesale at showrooms. She then operated out of a small office in the Celtics and began dabbling in retailing, before making the move as a full-time retailer on Queens Blvd in 2003.

April Glass is scheduled to close January 31. She said she is selling items at a steep discount and that there are larger items for sale such as 3 desktop computers, heavy-duty shelves and ceiling fans.

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$4,700 is really not that much for Queens blvd. I think the real problem is the lunatic owner who scolded me and my kids because my kid was touching something. So we walked out and never went back. Good riddance to this person. Learn how to treat your customers better and they’ll keep you in business.


I found all of this today!!
Sunnyside BID hired a New Jersey resident,who, according to himself “new nothing about Queens” before being hired!!

Here is the Executive Board of Sunnyside BID

The Chairman of Sunnyside BID lives in Lindenhurst, Long Island.
The Treasurer of Sunnyside Bid is selling his property in Sunnyside!
The Secretary of Sunnyside BID is closing her store!
James Bray, Executive Director of BID lives in New Jersey!!

A Disgrace


From the Sunnyside Post below, form one year ago,

Sunnyside Shines, a local business improvement district (BID), hired 23-year-old James Bray as its new executive director.Bray, who said he knew “nothing about Queens” before joining the BID, was hired as a part-time worker in November to help Sunnyside Shines with is computer and network problems.

The BID’s role is to promote business in Sunnyside. Its function is particularly important right now as a slew of businesses are struggling to survive. In recent months many businesses have closed,

Bray, who said he knew “nothing about Queens” before joining the BID, was hired as a part-time worker in November to help Sunnyside Shines with is computer and network problems.

He was able to get the job through his father Thomas Bray, who reports to John Vogt, the regional director at White Castle. Vogt is the chairman of Sunnyside Shines.

Vogt, a Lindenhurst resident, is also the chairman of the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce .

This will be Bray’s first executive role. .

Bray, who is being paid $41,600 (without healthcare), said that he brings a “fresh perspective to the job.” Many people in Sunnyside’s local organizations have been here a long time, he said.


Gary the Agnostic said…
Sunnyside Shines is going through Executive Directors the same way that Steinbrenner used to go through managers. How many have they had in the last year? Three? Four?

Anonymous said…
On that salary, young lad will finally get to move out of parents’ house.

Naturally, the job of Sunnyside BID exec. dir. was not open or advertised anywhere. It was given to Bray.

That’s just how Bloomberg hires, too. He may be inexperienced, but he’s got connections.

Anonymous said…
what a joke… advertise a job in an obscure website, then claim nobody wants a $41,600/yr job in this economy? give me a break. At least get someone who knows where Sunnyside is. Nice step up from selling patio furniture though.

Anonymous said…
Been to Sunnyside lately? Empty storefronts galore, the new businesses feature eyebrow threading, eyebrow threading, and eyebrow threading. By the way, I am unemployed, and would have jumped at the opportunity to improve my community – but maybe some kid from New Jersey that probably never set foot in Queens can do a better job than me?



I like your ideas Simon, but you can hardly ask BID to start a campaign to support Sunnyside, when they will not hire in Sunnyside,


Hey Marty , times have changed, and where people spend their money has changed. My hope is we need to put our town on the map. we need to market out town. we do not run enought sales during the years to get our residentce excited to spend their money here. If we could save more money here and knew where all our business were here we could keep our money here. Just my opinion


i hate to say this but the olde towne isnt what it used to be. the golden days of woodside and sunnyside are a thing of the past.


Simon on like your ideas. I think we need to really market our town so other people from other areas will shop here. /we need to be able to park here. Maybe under the 7 train make it free on sunday so we can shop all we want. we need to advertise all our businesses as a town we need colotheing that is woodside on it or sunnysde on it and make it our town they we love and care about. we need a mentring group to solve problems and help to prevent problems and invite other businesse to be here. Lilke a major shoe store . LIke a payless or a fvor or a Pizza Hiut that you can eat in with their great salad bar. We need to be creative Go Sunnyside.


Didn’t she have a previous site in Celtic Park before moving to Queens Boulevard?…This morning, while passing the long-in-development Oasis Gyro & Pizza eatery on the SE corner of QB and 40th Street, I met a man standing in an open door who claimed to be the owner. He told me that they ran into tremendous difficulties getting permits and licenses because the site had never been a restaurant before. But now it’s mostly over and he hopes to be opening soon, maybe even next week. Let’s hope so, but I’ll believe it when I see it.


Wow, that is incredibly expensive. I know she’s probably looking at Skillman or somewhere North, but please come to Greenpoint Ave!!!! We need shopping here!!!!


Could we all start a campaign to,
shop in Sunnyside,
eat in Sunnyside,
have your coffee,
Pizza in Sunnyside?
Have your artwork, decorating done by a Sunnyside based company?

Save what we have left , before it is too late?

Could BID, Chamber of Commerce, Jimmy Van Bramer help with this?

Any thoughts?

Sunnyside Biz

$56,000 per year just to pay the rent! It’s sad to see even successful stores squeezed by landlords into folding.


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