Hundreds of Auburndale residents and small business owners rallied on Saturday, Oct. 16, for the shutdown of a rowdy neighborhood lounge that has been disrupting the quality of life in the area for the past eight months.
Residents were gathered outside of Kloud Tequila Grill (Silk Hookah Lounge LLC), located at 192-08 Northern Blvd., where they voiced their frustrations about inappropriate illegal activity occurring at the lounge.
“Kloud Tequila Grill is destroying our neighborhood and putting our safety at risk,” said Theodora Tsourapis, president of the Auburndale Northern Association, which represents local residents and business owners in the area surrounding the block between Northern Boulevard and 45th Avenue and 192nd and 193rd streets.
Ever since Kloud Tequila Grill opened, Tsourapis says her family’s life has been a “living nightmare.”
“We can’t sleep because of the loud music and screaming until 5 a.m. every day. The constant noise, drag racing, garbage and sexual activity right outside of our home is affecting our health and neighborhood safety,” Tsourapis said. “Even though they’re operating without a liquor license, none of our many 311 complaints or calls to the police have made a difference. City Hall must shut down Kloud Tequila Grill now!”
According to residents, the incidents at Kloud Tequila take place on a daily basis, seven days a week, much of it occurring from midnight to 3 a.m. over the past eight months.
Despite numerous complaints to government agencies and law enforcement, residents say nothing has changed.
The Auburndale Northern Association has launched an online petition for an investigation into the bar.
Dosung Andrew Jung, who represents one of the many small businesses on the block, said they’re concerned about the way Kloud Tequila Grill is conducting their business.
“Every day, we find garbage, vomit, empty liquor bottles scattered around the block,” Jung said. “Our safety is put at risk with drag racing by intoxicated patrons. Our quality of life is ruined with unacceptable noise from Kloud and sex acts inside parked cars at night. We demand City Hall shut down Kloud now!”
As the COVID-19 pandemic has already devastated the business community, Jessica Shim, CEO of Auburndale Cafe, which is located adjacent to Kloud Tequila, said the out-of-control bar is adding to business owners’ suffering.
“Kloud Tequila is an irresponsible business that allows customers to bring alcohol outside and drink in our neighborhood, urinate and vomit in front of our stores, and trash our sidewalks,” Shim said. “The owner does not clean up after his customers, builds illegal structures and has little regard for the safety of our community.”
John Choe, executive director of the Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce, is calling for Kloud Tequila’s liquor license to be revoked and the city to shut down the bar.
“Business owners have a responsibility to be good neighbors and to treat everyone in the community with respect,” Choe said. “Clearly, Kloud Tequila Grill has failed to act responsibly, and has lost the confidence of our community.”
Kloud Tequila Grill did not respond to a request for comment in time for publication.