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New owners move into Crescent Lounge space, few changes are expected

21 lounge Astoria

Sept. 6, 2014 By Michael Florio

The two men who bought the Crescent Lounge last month have re-opened the establishment under a different name.

The bar, now called 21+ Lounge, is located at 32-05 Crescent Street, and is scheduled to have a grand opening party in about two weeks.

However, the owners, Paul Criollo and Israel Crespo, have been showcasing their new bar to the public periodically. This weekend they will be open after 7 pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Last month, Crescent Lounge closed after being in operation for 13 years. The owner, John Karanikas, said he sold the bar to move on to the “next chapter.”

Criollo and Crespo, who proudly purchased it, said that they are not going to be making any radical changes to the bar; instead, just a few minor modifications.

“We don’t want to change the feel of the bar,” Criollo said.

Criollo said the previous owners were very selective in terms of who they were going to sell it to. They didn’t want to see a new owner come in and make big changes.

“We want to keep the same vibe, just give it a more modern facelift,” Criollo said.

The chairs and couches have all been reupholstered. The bar is being upgraded. Additionally, the owners are bringing in a projector to screen big events such as the Super Bowl and the Emmy awards. They have also erected a bookshelf to go along a wall.

Criollo said he has met with some of the former Crescent Lounge regulars and they are very supportive of the changes.

“We hope to keep the crowd that the lounge previously had and add to it,” he said.

One change is that the bar will be serving food. Criollo, who said he is still fine-tuning the menu, said he is likely to offer tapas– such as guacamole and chips, small empanadas and cheeseburger sliders.

The establishment will also serve specialty cocktails, a large selection of wine, as well as cheese platters.

The lounge bar can seat over 50 people, and Criollo hopes to add an outdoor seating area next spring.

He said there will be a grand opening event toward the end of September, once all the final touches are complete.

This is the first bar that Criollo and Crespo have opened. The two are friends from Baruch College, who both majored in entrepreneurship. They are both from Jackson Heights.

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Friends and family night (Thursday)

Friends and family night (Thursday)

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