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The Shops at Atlas Park - need some info

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moymoy Mar 8, 2007 05:40 PM

I live in FH and have heard Atlas Park mentioned a few times, I want to check out the shops especially the Amish Food store this w/e...my question is: is there free parking or better yet, ample parking? Thanks.

  1. janie Mar 8, 2007 06:26 PM

    There is a parking lot that charges, it's about $3 I think...which is frankly a bad idea for Amish, as they give you no parking voucher, not good if you're interested in repeat customers to buy food there regularly. There is parking on the street surrounding Atlas Park, in front of cemetary, and on side street, also that is not metered. I posted about Amish Foods in anticipation of its opening some time ago, do a search for my post if you're interested. Stuff looked decent its opening week, and then sort of declined rapidly, guess not much of a turnover...although I did buy very good tortelleloni--their brand, good selection of goat cheese, and some good produce at decent prices...they had very nice roast beef but then they had super well done stuff on display, and I like it rare. Their little bakery section is nothing to speak of, and no bread at all...the salad bar and prepared foods look like they've been sitting around too long, and their olive bar can be hit or miss. Let me put it this way, it ain't no citarella. The seafood on display was so so, and meats and chicken unimpressive...I think it's going to be hard for them to survive there, and especially with the parking situation...other than that...the California Pizza Kitchen that is there, surprisingly has a few decent things, not bad for a chain...and it's a nice atmosphere...Manor Deli opened up a restaurant there called Okterfest, which features their German specialities-I go to their deli alot in Richmond Hill and their macaroni salad and roast beef rock. It's a funny place, looks like Palm Beach in Queens...perhaps you might do better at the Trader Joe's whenever that is supposed to open sometime this summer on Woodhaven Blvd...

    1. p
      pellegrino31 Mar 9, 2007 05:55 AM

      I went to Amish Market a few weeks ago and had a similar experience to Janie - I found it to be a really inconsistent mix of high end (so I felt like I was at Citarella or Garden of Eden) and regular groceries. It was like it was having trouble deciding what it wanted to be. And yes the seafood and meats looked pretty sad. So overall I wasn't all that impressed. And they are going to have a really hard time whenever Trader Joe's finally opens - they won't be able to compete on price nor on the parking situation, which at TJ's will undoubtedly be free.

      The rest of Atlas Park also has the same feel - not sure if it wants to be high end or middle of the road. There's a Claire's store which is all cheap throwaway jewelry and accessories, but then there is also what seems to be a pretty nice women's clothing store that sells designer denim and great handbags - I'm just not sure what the market in this area is for a $900 Marc Jacobs bag (though I don't mind coveting it myself).

      That said, I will admit too that California Pizza Kitchen is decent for a chain.

      1. m
        moymoy Mar 9, 2007 06:55 AM

        Thanks for the heads up, wow...sounds like the local Super Stop & Shop might win out over the Amish Market. I checked the website and it did look very odd as you both mentioned. Palm trees in Glendale? I was hoping that this mall is a sign of some rejuvenation that would bring better restaurants and "foodie" goodies to the area. I will still go and check it out but I'll manage my expectations. I can't wait till Trader Joe's comes but I hope they won't pare down their inventory.

        1. b
          bobbyrab Mar 9, 2007 07:41 AM

          Yup the Atlas Mall is indeed a strange place. I go there with my significant other who enjoys one of the specialty woman's stores there and I keep telling her the place will not last two years. The stores just don't seem to match up with the demographics of the surrounding neighborhoods. When you walk into Steinmart, it is eerily empty and with a sterile atmosphere. The movie theater is a good addition though and they do validate parking. Mostly non-descript chain restaurants there but the new German one I will have to try when I get in the mood to be in downtown Boca Raton off of Cooper Avenue.

          1. sandrina Mar 9, 2007 08:52 AM

            moymoy, if you do decide to go, call first because they had a water main rupture recently. From what I've heard, several of the shops may have been affected. The Amish Market is located in an elevated location, so it may have been spared damage. I'm not sure if the mall is at all open or closed by now though.

            1. s
              SuzyP Mar 11, 2007 11:09 AM

              I agree that Amish Market is very so-so, and Atlas Park is downright weird. However, if you are an early bird, you can park in the outdoor circle for free until 10:00 a.m. A. M. opens at 7:00, I think. I have used them for some exotic ingredients I needed for this or that that I couldn't find elsewhere in Forest Hills. I've also gotten some pretty good bread and baked goods from them. I also have doubts that Amish Market or Atlas Park will survive in the long run. However, until Trader Joe's is open, it gives me an extra option.

              1. m
                moymoy Mar 11, 2007 01:28 PM

                Thanks for all the info and tips. I belong to NYSC and they told me they validate for 1.5hrs parking for $1 at Atlas. It's my pet peeve, I HATE to pay for parking when I'm shopping! I drove down Metropolitan Ave yesterday and didn't notice any empty storefronts, where is new Trader Joe's supposed to be?

                3 Replies
                1. re: moymoy
                  s
                  SuzyP Mar 11, 2007 05:16 PM

                  Trader Joe's is going into the Former Heidelberg Press building, just after (or before depending on direction) where you turn off Metro for Home Depot and Sports Authority. How is the NYSC @ Atlas? I belong too, but haven't tried that location. What bothers me about paying for parking, is that their raison d'etre is supposed to be givning Queens the suburban shopping experience. Where in the burbs do you pay for parking? And its not like Queens Center where people would leave their cars and hop on the subway into Manhattan. There's no other reason to park there than to shop there. Let them eat the parking if they want the business.

                  1. re: SuzyP
                    m
                    moymoy Mar 12, 2007 07:33 AM

                    Thanks for the TJ's location...I really like their roasted garlic hummus & sesame flatbreads.

                    Yeah, the paid parking is not cool but I think bobbyrab makes a good point. What they should do if they want to curtail offenders is to give 2 hours free for the real shoppers and then charge for any additional hours.

                    I ended up not buying anything from the Amish Food Market, the irony!
                    The NYSC Atlas location is very nice, brand new facility and classes are available. I love spinning. The FH location is so overcrowded esp. on weekends. I think the Rego Park location will open up by year end.

                    1. re: SuzyP
                      s
                      shayne Sep 25, 2007 12:03 PM

                      Just reading this now. The NYSC at Atlas Park is great. Liz is one of the best instructors. Check out her schedule, not sure when she teaches now. Used to be on Fridays - 3 classes.

                  2. b
                    bobbyrab Mar 11, 2007 08:52 PM

                    I have a feeling that they charge for parking simply because the locals would be mighty tempted to leave their cars parked at Atlas rather than on the streets if it were unlimited free parking. This would be extremely attractive in winter when indoor parking would sure be a better option than scraping ice and snow off of one's car. I do believe that the Queens Center charges for parking in its garage as well as the Sears-Marshall complex further east on QB.

                    1. a
                      Afikoman Mar 17, 2007 06:53 PM

                      I really enjoy Atlas Park. I have been going since it opened last year. The bar/cafe in the middle has a nice menu with lovely salads and sandwiches. Johnny Rockets is never crowed. Shiro of Japan is fun and yummy.

                      I can enjoy a movie without hoods from Jamaica bringing their screaming kids to a 9pm movie. (The Midway...ugh!). It's clean, safe, uncrowded and has a Starbucks...as close to heaven as you can get. (and certainly worth $3 to park)

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Afikoman
                        z
                        Zorotron Apr 13, 2007 04:40 PM

                        Atlas Park is the most bizarre happening I have witnessed in Queens since I moved to Ridgewood 6 years ago. There was just about NOTHING to do in this area until Atlas. Now we have a nice theater to go to and a Starbucks and Borders. I suppose I can't complain about that. I went to the Amish Market and found the food decidedly unappealing. I'm sure if I comb the place I can find a few nice things, however. I haven't tried any of the restaurants, but I seriously doubt there will be anything great. Perhaps the German place. Has anybody been to that place? But I like a some decent chain food every once in a while, especially after a good movie. Some have posted their reservations about Atlas, but I think that is just a reaction to how unusual it is to the Area. I do wonder with the others what the viability of Atlas is in the market. Either the market analyist is a genius or a madman. In the end, beggars can't be choosers and I hope the place stays open. Three dollars parking is not a big deal to me when the option is having nothing else to choose from.

                      2. MaspethMaven Apr 14, 2007 03:29 PM

                        No free parking, but the parking prices are comparable to other shopping malls in Queens and Brooklyn. The fact is, people, free parking is increasingly rare within the city limits. Fact of life in NYC. If I consider the cost of parking vs. the amount of gas used and exhaust produced driving further away and circling for a free parking space, I'll usually opt to pay for the space.

                        Back to the food.

                        Amish market is so so. Like many others have sais, turnover is a problem, as is the management's still working out who their target customer is. Atlas Park is an open plan shopping mall similar to malls all over the country. Yes, it feels exactly like parts of Florida. Manor Oktoberfest is supposed to be good, I look forward to going there soon. Let us know if you try it...

                        the California Pizza Kitchen is ok. You pay for the ambience and cleanliness. The food is overpriced, but the beer selection was surprisingly well thought out.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: MaspethMaven
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                          FAL Apr 15, 2007 03:43 AM

                          IMO . Some parts of the Atlas Mall are ok. If they want people to come in they will have to give the consumer more. I rather drive to Manhasset on Nothern Blvd much better stores to shop at. Parking in free and no one bangs up your car,

                        2. l
                          lor83130 Sep 24, 2007 12:33 PM

                          Why is atlas an unusual addition to the neighborhood? Ive Lived here all my life 33 years and I couldn't be more happy with what they did. It's true the movie theater is great although as soon as they started putting commercials on TV it has been getting rowdy and alot of kids past 9pm.. which is crazy during school nights.

                          I love that there is a CPK and Chillis. The stores on the other hand I wouldnt shop in. BUT I heard that's why they put them there to have an older demographic hang out there.

                          I was hoping for a Sephora, Victorias Secret, Club Monaco, Banana Republic, Express... Then I bet that place will be hoping.

                          We do need places to hang out at night. I always go to the city.. Sometimes I wanna just chill near home.. They need a more bar like atmosphere for the 20-30 somethings... maybe live cover bands..

                          I never heard a Trader Joes was coming? That's exciting! I go to the one on Union Square,. I love it.. Any news about a whole foods?

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: lor83130
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                            Shayna Madel Sep 24, 2007 12:58 PM

                            I think that some people are finding Glendale an odd location for Atlas Park given the decidedly upscale nature of most of the stores in contrast to the neighborhood, which appears to be more middle class. I do not know Glendale, well, so I cannot comment on whether this assessment is correct.

                            I do not know the business plan for Sephora, Victoria's Secret or Banana Republic, but they are all on Austin Street and maybe also in the Queens Center Mall and therefore possibly might not end up at Atlas Park.

                            It is my understanding that Atlas Park had to give huge incentives to lure in some of the businesses there--something like 6 months' free rent , and that many of the businesses are still struggling.

                            I ate at the CPK a few months ago and was very underwhelmed. I do not expect gourmet food from any chain, but there is no excuse for food coming out dry and not hot (pizzas). Could have been an off night, so I will probably give it one more shot. Unfortunately, Chili's has a corporate policy not to cook burgers rare (unhealthiest of all, but my favorite), so I can't get a burger to my liking there.

                            As to the Amish Market, I agree with earlier posts about its apparent schizophrenic combination of items. I think their other locations are all in Manhattan and sort of intended to be local, upscale markets and it is just wierd that they are located in essentially a multi-sided strip mall.

                            FYI, it looks like TJ is opening in about a month. I haven't heard anything about a Whole Foods.

                            1. re: Shayna Madel
                              m
                              MrsG Apr 10, 2008 09:42 PM

                              We've been living in Ridgewood for 2 years now and with the abysmal state of food anywhere near us, just having the option of the Amish Market has been nice. although certainly whatever everyone says is true about the split personality. The truth is the Atlas Park is a stupid idea for that neighborhood. We run into local parents with our kids in the playgrounds and most haven't even given it a look. The Stop N Shop on Grand is still where we get most things, but I differ with the earlier opinion about the meat, or at least some of it, at Amish. The Fillet Mignon is the best you'll get for $20lbs anywhere we've seen in Queens. We used to get the really nice stuff from Ceriello's in Grand Central and this ain't that, but it's across the street from the same ballpark. Also, the freshly ground serloin is better than Iavrone or anywhere else in the area. The butcher at Amish is really nice. I like supporting him. He also will season or maranade anything at no extra price.

                              One other tip is that the Amish sweet potatoes are nice and 10 cents less than SNS. They also have a nice red wine hard salami. You know, a few things you won't get elsewhere in the area. They frequently will have decent raspberries when no one else does. THey charge for them, but...if you covet raspberries, it's nice to be able to get them when you want them.

                              I have a feeling TJ's will actually fill still yet another niche between Amish and SNS. In general I don't think TJ's beef is better than Amish and SNS has BNE chicken so...covered there.

                              Parking is now free at Atlas for 3 hours. It's so clearly failing as a business venture. THe movie theatre is the only business making money in that place. We did CA Pizza - the food was ok, but the service was from a sitcom. We went in with the place empty and I literally had to go in the back and find our waiter. Borders has a nice children's area in the back - good for rainy days. Hey, it's not too great at Altas, but it's a whole lot better than not having it. It's not like Glendale, Ridgewood or Middle Village/Maspeth has anything better to offer.

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