It's a tale as old as time: An old, family business can't afford a steep rent increase and is forced to close. Could Sag Harbor's Schiavoni's IGA Market fall victim to this oft-repeated fate? The market owners currently pay $10,800 a month in rent, but have just received a letter from their landlord saying that this number is going up to $17,068 (which translates to an additional $75,000 a year). Pay up, or vacate the premises.
But, as is often the case in the Hamptons, this is all a family affair: The building and the business had been owned by two Schiavoni brothers back in the day, but upon both of their deaths, the building went to one side of the family and the business went to another and "for much of that time, the lease to operate the market in the building was negotiated and handled informally among family members." But at issue now is a very unfriendly dispute over the usable square footage in the building, upon which the price per square foot rent is calculated: "A recent survey conducted for [the landlord] indicates there is about 7,600 square feet of retail space" but the market owners "maintain there is only about 5,500 square feet of usable retail space."
Thanksgiving dinner is going to be super awkward this year.