Hell's Kitchen Gay Bar Raided for Fourth Time Since December, Sources Say
HELL'S KITCHEN — The NYPD raided and shut down the Fairytail Lounge, a popular gay bar at 500 W. 48th St., on Friday night — the hotspot's fourth raid since it was shut down in December for operating without a liquor license, according to police sources.
This time around, officials with the state Workers' Compensation Board discovered the bar was not paying workers' compensation insurance, so it issued a stop work order — which the Fairytail Lounge ignored, sources said.
According to a spokesman for the board, the bar stopped carrying workers' compensation insurance on Oct. 13, and received a stop work order on April 3, which is still in effect.
The bar currently owes $17,000 in fines to the board, the spokesman said. The board was not involved in the most recent raid, he added.
Police raided the Fairytail Lounge on May 2, visited it again on Wednesday and then raided and shut it down this past Friday, sources said. All three times, the bar was open and serving customers — in violation of the stop work order.
Officials also issued a violation for having people dancing on the bar without a cabaret license, sources said.
The popular spot offers up cheap mixed drinks for $3 at its daily happy hour, bringing in customers who neighbors complain are too noisy for the residential area.
In December, Community Board 4 asked the State Liquor Authority to not renew the bar's liquor license, saying it played porn on television screens that could be seen easily by passersby.
The SLA renewed the bar's license on Dec. 23, even though the December raid resulted in 19 violations with the agency.
Owner Anthony Sciana said that the bar would reopen Monday evening.
"We are open. We had workers' comp the whole time," he said, declining to elaborate.