Recently, a neighbor asked me to research the southeast corner of Broadway and 207th Street (4930 Broadway). She was curious what businesses had occupied the corner through the years.
Unsure, I posed the question to some longtime Inwood residents via social media. The responses were so chock full of history that I’ve decided to post the findings MyInwood.net.
The storefront, most recently occupied by a Mexican restaurant called La Piñata, has a rich history. The above photograph by William Davis Hassler, who once lived on Vermilyea Avenue, shows that the building was one of the first commercial structures built in the then fledgling neighborhood.
As early as 1910, as evidenced in the above photo, the corner was home to a restaurant called the Arras Inn. The Arras Inn began as a place to grab a drink and a meal. They were best known for their seafood—particularly their lobster.
The restaurant would go on to become a notorious speakeasy during Prohibition.
By 1919 the Arras Inn would share its space with a Chevrolet dealership.
Photos taken between 1925 and 1926 show the B.F. Curry Chevrolet dealership the corner storefront on 207th Street and Broadway.
In the 1950’s through the early 1960’s local residents say the corner was home to a tobacco shop— which sold cigars, pipes and pipe tobacco blends, lighters, newspapers, paperbacks and magazines.
From the mid-1960’s through the 1980’s the space housed a hosiery shop called Value Hosiery.
Over the last two decades it has housed a Tropical Chicken restaurant, which specialized in “roasted” chicken, a Dunkin Donuts, a steam-table seafood establishment called Marisco Express, another fish joint called Boca Chica, a coffee shop called Cafe Espresso and most recently La Piñata, a Mexican restaurant.
If you have a memory or old photo of this location that you’d like to share, please write in.