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Lux Apartment Turned into a Thumping Night Club May Require Injunctive Relief


July 1, 2018

This is a story about our representation of a landlord in a situation in Brooklyn where some entitled young tenants of a luxury loft apartment decided to turn the place into a nightclub.[1] Literally.

There were a dozen wild parties in a six-month period. Each party lasted until approximately 6:00 a.m., sometimes longer. The parties took place in the apartment and on the roof of the subject building and, unfortunately, in the common hallways throughout the building. Surveillance of the situation revealed that these parties were being advertised and were attended by paying guests. The tenants actually hired a bouncer for the main entrance of the building, who hassled other tenants trying to get to their apartments! You can’t make this stuff up. The parties were big, with up to thirty attendees. At the parties, tenants blasted music from a powered speaker system, which caused not only noise, but vibrations in neighboring apartments. Party guests screamed and shouted. The atmosphere at each party was that of a thumping nightclub. The common areas of the building and other tenants’ apartments filled with the odor of cigarettes. The skylight of the building was broken by tenants’ party guests, causing glass to rain down on other tenants of the building below. There were bottles, cans, trash, and smoked cigarettes in the common areas and/or on the roof after each party.

The landlord was particularly concerned because the roof had no decking, no lighting, and no railing. This was not a commercial building. It is not equipped with the ingress and egress, sprinkler systems, or lighted exit signs that would be required for a bar or a nightclub. It was only a matter of time before one of these large-scale weekend parties resulted in a tragedy. The parties were getting progressively crazier. Other tenants of the building were threatening to leave.

In a case such as this, the typical notice of lease termination, followed by a holdover, seemed inadequate. We prepared an application for an immediate injunction in Supreme Court; but never needed to be signed by a judge. Once alerted to landlord's intentions, tenants came quickly to the table. The matter was settled.

What’s the lesson? The lesson here is that the landlord probably waited too long to consult counsel. Landlord should not have been a dozen parties into this saga before taking action. Landlords need to be proactive in these situations. Ignoring terrible tenant behavior such as this does not make it go away; it makes it worse.

Respectfully submitted,

Michelle Itkowitz



[1] Some details changed to protect the innocent.

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