Home Real Estate Papaya King reopens at new Upper East Side location

Papaya King reopens at new Upper East Side location

by DIGITAL TIMES
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Papaya King’s original Upper East Side location. Photo via WikiCommons

Papaya King is officially serving its beloved hot dogs and tropical drinks to New Yorkers once again. This past weekend the iconic Upper East Side establishment reopened across the street from its original location at 179 East 86th Street to a new storefront at 206B East 86th Street, according to the local news website Upper East Site. The restaurant closed its original store in April 2023 after Extell purchased and demolished the property with plans to build a new 17-story condo tower.

According to Upper East Site, the shop has a yellow interior and a mural displaying a variety of food brands created the same year Papaya King opened, such as Mentos and Fritos. Another mural includes black-and-white photographs of the hot dog shop when it first opened.

Established in 1932 by Greek immigrant Constantine “Gus” Poulus, Papaya King has made a name for itself over its 90-year existence with its signature “snappy” hot dogs and tropical fruit drinks. In 2010, the brand was purchased by Wayne Rosenbaum, with Poulus’ nephew Alexander working the grill.

In 2020, Papaya King’s former landlord, Imperial Sterling, sued the current owners, alleging they had operated the shop without permission after the original lease was canceled due to unpaid rent, according to The Real Deal.

In fall 2021, Extell purchased Papaya King and its surrounding properties for $21 million and filed plans to demolish the site in June 2022, according to Patch. After taking over as the property owner, Extell requested to become the plaintiff in the lawsuit against Papaya King, according to court records.

In April 2023, Papaya King announced it had found a new location after years of narrowly avoiding permanent closure. It was revealed that the new storefront could have opened as soon as a week after the announcement, but those plans were delayed indefinitely, according to Gothamist.

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