Guy Fieri’s Times Square eatery closed because Kushner Companies demanded too much rent, report says

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Guy Fieri’s Times Square restaurant reportedly closed due to the high rent imposed by Jared Kushner’s real estate company.

Food Network star Fieri opened his massive New York City restaurant five years ago, but shuttered its doors for good on Dec. 31. The reason for Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar closure was not immediately disclosed.

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However, The Washington Post reported Fieri’s restaurant may have closed down due to the high rent. The restaurant reportedly grossed about $17 million in sales, but the space’s rent imposed by Kushner Companies — the owner of the building — allegedly totaled $1.8 million a year, the Post reported.

Pace car driver for the Indianapolis 500 Guy Fieri smiles during the drivers' meeting at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana May 26, 2012. The Indianapolis 500 is scheduled to run on May 27. REUTERS/Jeff Haynes (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT MOTORSPORT ENTERTAINMENT) - GM1E85R02Y301

Guy Fieri opened the Times Square restaurant five years ago and it shuttered in December 2017.  (Reuters)

Kushner Companies declined to confirm the rent to the Post, but sources told the paper it was around $1.8 million. Jared Kushner, President Trump’s senior advisor and his son-in-law, resigned from the Kushner Companies after taking the cabinet position.

Senior Adviser to the President Jared Kushner arrives to speak to the media outside the West Wing of the White House in Washington, U.S., July 24, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts - RC1217531600

Jared Kushner’s company, Kushner Companies, reportedly asked for $1.8 million in rent each year for the Times Square space.  (Reuters)

The restaurant, located in the coveted Times Square area, was determined to be the 39th most successful independent restaurant in the U.S., and was popular with tourists and celebrities. The Washington Post also noted that a restaurant paying $1.8 million in rent would need to make at least $30 million per year in order to turn a profit.

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Carmine’s, a family-style Italian restaurant located in the same area, was one of the independent restaurants to take in more than $30 million a year in sales, although the rent Carmine’s was paying was not immediately clear.  

NY Eater reported that Kushner Companies was having trouble filling Fieri’s old Times Square digs, but celebrity chef Todd English was rumored to be interested in opening a food hall in that space. However, English is facing a sexual harassment lawsuit, and had also backed out of opening a separate food hall in NYC just last year, Eater notes.