Controversial club Brooklyn Mirage reopens after city closure

EXCLUSIVE: City shuts controversial Williamsburg club Brooklyn Mirage
Photo by Louise Wateridge

You’re not seeing things — controversial Williamsburg pop-up club the Brooklyn Mirage is back open again, after the city closed it for being a fire hazard last month.

Club owner City Fox fixed all the problems, according to a Department of Buildings rep, and the agency reinstated its party permits last week — but some locals are flabbergasted the organizer is getting another chance after several run-ins with authorities.

“It’s amazing how these agencies have failed miserably to protect the community,” said Laura Hoffman, a Greenpoint resident who led a successful campaign to stop Mirage organizer Cityfox throwing a Halloween party in a toxic warehouse last year. “I think it’s terrible.”

The city pulled the plug on the outdoor Stewart Avenue venue on May 27, a day after the fire department shut a party there claiming there were combustible materials everywhere, locked exits, and not enough staff on hand to help in case of a fire.

Police also arrested two attendees for possession of cocaine that evening, according to an official.

The closure came a week after police caught bartenders there serving booze without a liquor license on May 21, confiscating the hooch and slapping the organizer with summonses.

And locals like Hoffman remember City Fox’s notorious Halloween bash in the old NuHart Plastics factory — a federal Superfund cleanup site — which firefighters stopped before it could get started, as it was also a fire hazard.

But the city has now lifted the recent vacate order, claiming the property owners took care of the safety violations and brought the old industrial site into compliance with the construction code, according to a buildings department spokesman.

The party palace quietly announced its return with an alcohol-free “invite only” bash on Saturday.

Many partygoers celebrated the club’s return — which is set to host at least seven more parties throughout the summer, according to dance music website Resident Advisor — but demanded the promoters get their acts together and provide a safe place for them to let loose.

“I am super excited it’s back,” said Lisa Karmel, a Manhattanite who also partied at the club’s first incarnation on Scott Avenue and Randolph Street last year. “I hope the safety measures improve. It’s a really unique venue so I am looking forward to it sticking around for awhile.”

City Fox did not return request for comment.

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at lgill@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill