In This Week's [em]Observer[/em]…

Race, Booze, Jazz and Noise Make for Soho Restaurant Fight
“Tom and Gayle Patrick-Odeen are reluctant to boast about their latest court victory in front of the neighbors–even though they suggest the ruling might finally allow them to reopen their embattled and long-shuttered soul-food eatery and live jazz venue, Lola, in Soho. Granted, that’s all the foodie duo has been trying to do for nearly two years now, while their leased 3,500-square-foot retail space at the corner of Watts and Thompson streets sat empty.”
Go to Counter Espionage by Chris Shott

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The Boss gets breaks.

Bloomberg’s Evolution on Public Money for Private Development
“Mayor Bloomberg came into office vowing to end corporate welfare as we know it. And he did. Unless your name is George Steinbrenner, Hank Paulson or Hank McKinnell. On his first day as mayor-elect, the Mr. Bloomberg renounced the property and sales tax breaks that his own media company received for its 59th Street headquarters. ‘Any company that makes a decision as to where they are going to be based on the tax rate,’ he said, ‘is a company that won’t be around very long.’ The message, according to city officials and lobbyists, has caught on: Many businesses are now afraid to ask for tax breaks. But you can still get one from Bloomberg.” Go to story by Matthew Schuerman

Clear Channel Packs Five Offices into One Tribeca Spot
“The pubic-turned-private radio empire Clear Channel Communications is consolidating five local offices and moving its nascent city headquarters to Tribeca next spring. On the heels of being sold to two investors for $26 billion three weeks ago and an announcement that it plans to shed a third of its radio stations, the Texas-based company has signed a 15-year lease at the former AT&T building at 32 Avenue of the Americas.” Go to Commercial Breaks by John Koblin

Manhattan Office Market Not That Hot in 2006
“To have followed the Manhattan office market in 2006 is to have bathed in praiseful adjectives. Roaring. Red-hot. Historic. Meteoric. But don’t go thinking the 2006 office market’s anything special. For all the understandable exuberance over the current boom market, it seems to be simply following the normal path history dictates, one spelled out by employment levels, construction activity, and altered by events no one can really see coming.” Go to The Lab by Tom Acitelli

Conan O’Brien buys a Majestic penthouse
“Conan O’Brien has signed a contract for a corner penthouse at the Majestic, according to a source with knowledge of the deal. The Web site of the Stribling brokerage lists Mr. O’Brien’s new place for $9.95 million–but there was no word yet what the everlastingly droll Late Night host paid for the apartment. The apartment was listed by Stribling senior vice president Cathy Taub, whose company biography says that she lives in the Majestic. (Manhattan brokers are suave like that.)” Go to Manhattan Transfers by Max Abelson

Murder, Mystery and Real Estate in Red Hook
“You know a Brooklyn neighborhood has really hit the big time when it gets its own eponymous murder mystery. The outer-borough universe in Red Hook, Reggie Nadelson’s sixth Artie Cohen novel, is so shadowy and lucrative and treacherous that developers ‘prowl’ the streets in search of real estate. What better way to depict the land of ancient dockyards and four-bedroom waterside condos and low-income projects and hip haircuts?” Go to review by Max Abelson

In This Week's [em]Observer[/em]…