Once-Opulent Lutèce Space Now Just a Crumbling Restaurant Ruin

There's been a few changes.
There's been a few changes. Photo: Howard Earl Simmons/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images

Some formerly grandiose old-school date spots just sputter out, it seems, while others are locked and then simply left to rot, if Bowery Boogie’s tour of the old Lutèce space is any indication. The blog gained access to the extensive decay and disrepair inside of 249 East 50th Street, which forms a development site with the townhouses at numbers 251 and 253. Those addresses were once the restaurants Kate Kearney’s and the Leopard, respectively, but now they’re just depressing. No one has bought the site in the ten years since the restaurant’s closure — which was ten years after the departure of trailblazing French chef André Soltner — the wallpaper has come down in sheets, moldings have been stripped, fireplaces decimated, and then some. It’s not progress. [Bowery Boogie, Related]