While Italian amusement conglomerate Zamperla might not have egg on its face today, it very well might be filthy with zeppole.
Since being given control over Coney Island’s new rides and its boardwalk in February of last year, Zamperla has taken drastic steps to “upgrade” the quality of entertainment on Brooklyn’s favorite beach, building whole new rides, re-branding the amusement park area as “Luna Park” and canceling leases with a variety of iconic boardwalk eateries in order to attract higher profile restaurants.
But, according to a report in today’s Post the latter-most makeover has hit a major snag as Zamperla has had to now offer lease renewals to two of the most classic spots along the boardwalk after its proposed deal with the Miami-based proprietors of The Pelican Hotel has begun to fall through. After an ice cream shop/test balloon that they opened over the Summer failed to thrive, Michele Merlo and Julio Gonzalez have apparently told certain sources that they cannot make conceivable profits based on the current lease structure that Zamperla has created.
This turmoil has led Zamperla back down the rainy, autumnal boardwalk with its proverbial tail between its legs to offer lease renewals to ice cream and fast food stand Paul’s Daughter and the famous/infamous Ruby’s Bar & Grill, two businesses with over 110 years of business on the boardwalk between them.
No news yet on whether or not the two establishments will agree to new deals, Ruby’s is apparently in the final stages of a planned shuttering after 77 years of business, but the deals reportedly on the table will offer both businesses 7 new summer seasons of life.
So, if everything breaks right, Coney Island’s shiny new Italian rides will be mixed with the natural scenery, sordid bars and greasy fast food.