Friday, September 27, 2019

The Sanctuary Is New Roosevelt Island Event Space At Former Dayspring Church Stone Cottage On East River Waterfront Promenade Opening Later This Month - Cocktail Bar, Speakeasy Bistro, Health Focused Restaurant & Outdoor Beer Garden Coming To The Sanctuary In Spring

Reported Wednesday September 23 on opening of the The Sanctuary, a new Roosevelt Island event space and restaurant located at the former Dayspring Church on the East River West Promenade  waterfront.

The first event at the Sanctuary will be a September 30 fundraiser for the Queens based Titan Theater Company.

As previously reported:
... A tipster reports that the owner of The Sanctuary also owns the Coffeed chain of multiple locations including  LIC Landing next to the Hunters Point ferry dock and New Leaf  stone cottage restaurant in Fort Tryon Park which appears similar to The Sanctuary on Roosevelt Island. I am told that Roosevelt Island's The Sanctuary is a personal project of the owner and not part of the Coffeed  properties.

Stay tuned for more news to come about The Sanctuary including plans for future events, community outreach and opening of the restaurant....
Here's more info on The Sanctuary from press release by Main Street Master Retail Leaseholder Hudson Related:
Hudson/Related today announced The Sanctuary, a new event space and restaurant located in a historic former church on Roosevelt Island. The 5,400 square foot space will offer visitors a health-focused restaurant, cocktail bar, outdoor beer garden and an event space, focusing on community fundraisers and events for non-profit organizations. Located at 851 Main Street, The Sanctuary is scheduled to open later this month, bringing a new community-focused space and breathing fresh air into the nearly 100-year-old building. The space will be run by New York City based Glow Group in partnership with The Sanctuary RI LLC and the nonprofit Helping Humans Across America.

The Sanctuary will be located in the former church of the Metropolitan Hospital, also formerly known as the Dayspring Church. Built in 1924, the charming stone and slate building is constructed of quarried grey gneiss. It has enormous stained glass windows and beautiful views of Manhattan Island and the East River.

“This beautiful, historic building has been a place of comfort and celebration for locals for nearly 100 years,” said Alexandra Kaplan, Project Manager at The Hudson Companies. “As the building lay vacant, we knew it had the potential to bring even more memories to this community. The Sanctuary will do just that, supporting local non-profits, offering healthy food options and creating a unique dining experience, all while maintaining the historical integrity of this incredible structure.”

The Glow Group is a highly collaborative entity that partners with local creative businesses and nonprofits, focusing on the shared goal to provide their community with meaningful event and dining experiences. It's is led by Frank "Turtle" Raffaele -- the restaurateur known for COFFEED, LIC Landing, and New Leaf Restaurant in Fort Tryon Park -- along with longtime business partner Gene Sky and tech entrepreneur Tom Chernaik. It has released a welcoming statement:

“When we first saw this historic structure, we were immediately awed by its architecture and location with sweeping views of the East River and Manhattan and it offers visitors a view of the bridges and the city like no other. We were even more impressed and excited at the prospect of operating on Roosevelt Island. All of the residents and local businesses here have been super-helpful and supportive and we are eager and overjoyed to serve this wonderful community. We are excited to work closely with the Roosevelt Island community and provide new dining and entertainment outings that local residents may not have had here before. We are equally gratified and excited to work with David Kramer and the amazing people at Hudson and Related, as we are proud believers in their vision to transform Main Street through rebranding, renovations, and improvements. Whether you come here for an event, a bite to eat, or a cocktail; our goal is for you to enjoy this fantastic and historic site and leave a little happier than when you came in.”

After hosting the critically acclaimed Titan Theater Company’s annual gala on September 30 featuring performances from Broadway actors, the Sanctuary will officially open to the public for events this fall, with a primary focus on community and non-profit events. The space will also be available for weddings, corporate functions and parties, and will host a number of events for the Roosevelt Island community throughout the fall, including a partnership series with Quiet Events, the group behind the popular Silent Disco parties. For more information on latest events, happenings, and bookings, visit the Sanctuary’s website at

The restaurant at The Sanctuary is scheduled to open next spring. The chic speakeasy-style bistro will harness the building’s unique location to offer a dramatic experience that remains respectful to the historic location. The restaurant will serve a diverse offering of food and beverages, with a focus on plant-based options, while remaining available for event use. The space is dedicated to highlighting the building's unique location and history, while providing a contemporary experience for visitors through events, food and drink offerings, and fresh nightlife options for Roosevelt Island residents. The significant cocktail menu, a rarity on Roosevelt Island, will be curated by a mixologist to offer options befitting the setting.

The Sanctuary is the latest lease signed by Hudson/Related to bring an eclectic mix of storefronts and offerings to Roosevelt Island. Earlier this year, Hudson/Related announced a lease with Jupioca, a juice, smoothie and tea shop serving high-quality, fresh and nutritious meals and beverages. Other new storefronts include Liukoshui, a hot pot restaurant, and PupCulture, a pet care and spa service.

The Glow Group was founded to encourage public/private partnerships and to help activate underutilized public and private spaces for community benefit. Helping Humans Across America has raised funds to support various non-profit causes, including hosting fundraisers to support charitable endeavors across the nation over the past 12 years.
Concerns have been raised by some residents about parking and increased vehicle traffic to The Sanctuary.

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
PSD will not be allowing any parking at the site, save for limited deliveries and perhaps the bare minimum of staff members (not VIPs). All existing fire lanes and roadways will be kept clear during all events. Anyone who drives to an event will have to park in Motorgate. Any other attendees to the event will be told to take public transportation, including our Red Bus service. PSD will be on hand to monitor the situation and make sure pedestrians do not go near the Octagon Comfort Station construction site or obstruct sidewalks or roadways. PSD will also be setting up an Uber turnaround away from the venue so as to minimize traffic congestion in the area for our residents. PSD will also monitor noise levels during events. Anyone who has a complaint can report it to PSD directly at 212-832-4545.
I've asked The Sanctuary ownership about parking plans. Will update when they reply.

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