A $13.8M peep show: Porn shop, venue gets new owner

Even porn shops aren't safe from the retail crisis

New York /
Jun.June 01, 2018 03:50 PM

Playpen at 687 Eighth Avenue

Many peep shows involve a price negotiation. In this case, the parties settled on $13.8 million.

Trans World Equities purchased 687 Eighth Avenue — home to Playpen and the Gotham City adult video — for $13.75 million, according to documents filed with the city’s Department of Finance. The building’s owner was Quad Real Investments, an LLC controlled by George Zazzali.

The buyer is a Midtown-based real estate firm that owns rental and retail properties in Manhattan. Based on StreetEasy, there are at least two active residential units in the building’s upper floors.

Neither the buyer or seller could immediately be reached for comment on Friday.

It’s not clear if a change of hands will impact the peep show and porn shop, but the recent closure of similar establishments in Times Square doesn’t seem to bode well for the industry. One of the city’s most well known venues, Show World Center at 671 Eighth Avenue, appears have closed following the death of its millionaire owner, Richard Basciano (a.k.a. the Sultan of Smut) last year. His estate filed plans last month to convert the 12-story building into offices. Vihan’s Video, another such establishment at 592 Eighth Avenue, appears to be closing, according to the blog “Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York.”

Playpen reportedly has viewing booths on the third floor for private live shows, in addition to more than two dozen video rooms. The business is one of the last of its ilk in an area that was once teeming with neon and promises of “GIRLS GIRLS GIRLS.” In the 1990s, the Giuliani administration wielded zoning rules to cut down on adult establishments.

Now, like most retail in the city, such shops face fierce competition from a singular source: the internet.


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
 Though landlords aren’t quite ready to say goodbye to their offices, employees are, according to a new survey by JLL. (Getty)
Sorry, boss: 72% of workers don’t want to return to offices full-time
Sorry, boss: 72% of workers don’t want to return to offices full-time
A selection of the properties, from left: 1020 Pacific Street, 818 Bergen Street, 483 St. Marks Avenue and 634 Classon Avenue (Google Maps, Kings County Supreme Court/Illustration by Alexis Manrodt for The Real Deal)
All Year sues partner over “illegitimate” deed transfers
All Year sues partner over “illegitimate” deed transfers
President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan was passed over the weekend. (Getty / Photo Illustration by Kevin Rebong for The Real Deal)
What real estate gets in Biden’s $1.9 trillion package
What real estate gets in Biden’s $1.9 trillion package
Continuum Company founder Ian Bruce Eichner and the former Spice Factory at 960 Franklin Street (Getty, Google Maps)
Eichner’s Crown Heights rezoning delayed once again
Eichner’s Crown Heights rezoning delayed once again
(Getty, iStock)
Movie theaters’ future uncertain as studios focus on streaming
Movie theaters’ future uncertain as studios focus on streaming
Durst Organization president Jonathan Durst and 1155 Sixth Avenue (Durst, Google Maps)
Jenner & Block cuts footprint, takes 67K sf at Durst’s 1155 Sixth Avenue
Jenner & Block cuts footprint, takes 67K sf at Durst’s 1155 Sixth Avenue
Mack Real Estate CEO Richard Mack and one of his new hotels at 51 Nassau Street. (Getty, ING)
Mack Real Estate takes over 7 distressed Manhattan hotels
Mack Real Estate takes over 7 distressed Manhattan hotels
1440 Broadway and CIM Group’s Shaul Kuba (Google Maps, Getty)
CIM closes on $400M refi for 1440 Broadway
CIM closes on $400M refi for 1440 Broadway
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...