If you pay attention to Teak on the Hudson’s social media, you may have noticed that it basically stopped back in December 2016. The restaurant’s Facebook and Twitter pages have been static since then, advertising a New Year’s Eve party that was apparently so epic it swallowed the business whole, because Teak’s been closed for weeks now. Following a hectic auction of literally everything not nailed down in the place back in September, the obvious assumption was that Teak had sputtered out. Which would be a shame, because Teak is … unique. Once described over at Hoboken Patch site as “basically like a weird funhouse,” Teak’s interior design is anything but boring.
Don’t worry, though, Teak’s not shutting down; according to the owners, it’s undergoing “multi-million dollar” renovations designed to transform it into something called an “ultra venue.” That’s a frightening phrase, and their further boast that you have “never seen anything like what we are about to do” isn’t very comforting either. After all, the existing Teak was a bizarre visual experience (though cool in its way), but apparently did not qualify as an “ultra” venue. Considering that Teak had a huge fish tank installed, we can only imagine what’s needed to go “ultra.”
Unfortunately, there’s no way of knowing, because there’s an almost total lack of information, making this a Teak Mystery. The owner is Maridian Properties, led by Mario Fini, who bought the building and relaunched the restaurant back in 2012; they also own several other buildings and businesses in that area. They haven’t responded to attempts to get in touch, which could be a canny publicity move. Nothing intrigues people like mystery, after all.
A renovation might be a genius move, too; the restaurant and nightlife business in Hoboken is … weird. On the one hand, old-school, no-nonsense bars can last for decades. On the other, flashier nightclubs and trendier eateries sometimes seem to have a mayfly-like lifespan, blinking in and out of existence so fast by the time you get around to making a reservation they’re gone. One reason for this is that Hobokenites are spoiled when it comes to places to eat and drink, and they get bored easily.
A renovation that re-imagines the space might be the ideal way to remind everyone in town that Teak is a place you can go for a drink and a bite to eat, or a dance party, or maybe a place conveniently located directly across from the PATH station. And the lack of information certainly has people interested—and the longer the news blackout goes on, the more interested people will be.
We’ll miss that fish tank, though.