The Iconic Central Park Boathouse Closes Indefinitely, Lays Off 163 Employees Due to COVID-19

The 66-year-old restaurant has been featured in dozens of films including When Harry Met Sally and 27 Dresses

meg ryan when harry met sally
Loeb Boathouse in When Harry Met Sally.

The Loeb Boathouse, the historic 66-year-old restaurant located in Central Park, is staying closed for the foreseeable future.

In a Sept. 8 filing with the New York Department of Labor, the restaurant said it is remaining shuttered due to "unforeseeable business circumstances prompted by COVID-19."

According to the filing, all 163 employees who were temporarily furloughed by owner Dean Poll in March when the restaurant first shut down have now been laid-off permanently.

The restaurant said in a statement on its website that it anticipates reopening in April.

A view of the Central Park's historic Loeb Boathouse restaurant.
Loeb Boathouse. John Nacion/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty

According to the New York Post, who cited sources, the eatery has not yet opened due to its reliance on heavy tourist traffic and large parties to break even.

The Loeb Boathouse originally opened in March 1954. It briefly closed for several months in 2017 for $2.9 million worth of refurbishing and modernization, the New York Post reported.

The popular eatery has appeared in various films over the years, such as When Harry Met Sally, 27 Dresses, and 3 Men and a Little Lady.

27 Dresses
Loeb Boathouse in 27 Dresses.

New York City recently opened indoor dining with 25 percent capacity, while outdoor dining has been opened since June. Restaurants can not provide bar service.

New guidelines, issued by Gov. Andrew Cuomo last month, state that all indoor dining customers are subject to temperature checks and one member of each party has to give contact tracing information. Additionally, guests are required to wear face coverings when not seated.

To enforce compliance with indoor dining guidelines, Cuomo has assigned 400 new personnel to an existing task force of the State Liquor Authority and state police.

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