After fifteen years, The Living Room is closing on January 19th at the end of its lease at Atlantic Avenue on the North End waterfront. The news comes shortly after a spat of local closings, including La Galleria 33 on Salem Street and Durgin Park at Faneuil Hall.

In 1998, it opened as a white table cloth seafood restaurant called “Atlantic 101,” featuring great seafood and a vibrant piano bar atmosphere.  As competition heated up in the following five years, it got a bit crowded when Legal Seafood, Naked Fish, King Fish and McCormick & Schmick’s all opened their doors in the area.  So in 2003, the seafood restaurant morphed into one of the most happening places on what was then the newly developed waterfront. This concept catered to young professionals who at the time had very few options in the neighborhood for nightlife.

“We were pioneers in the restaurant/bar/lounge scene” said John Hauck, one of the founders of both concepts.  “We offered a great selection of American and global comfort food, plus a nice list of creative martini’s and mixed drinks to serve our guests.  After we finally got our 2:00 AM license, we added DJ’s and dancing. No one ever thought of putting couches in a bar in those days.”  The Living Room filled the need as a place for locals to go to entertain when their own living rooms were too small.

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The Living Room

But nothing lasts forever, and the Mercantile building was sold in 2015.  “The new owners and management made promises to upgrade the property,” said owners of The Living Room, but that has not happened. “They offered only a one year lease, then another 3 month lease at substantial rent increases.  [Mercantile building] management would not commit to a long term lease which the Living Room requested to do much needed renovations.”

“We will miss all of our employees, patrons and the North End community who have been like family to us” lamented JB and Garrett Hauck, who have worked in this family business with their father since 2005.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. Sad to see such a great family and business being pushed out from our community.
    Always ready to help for any community event or fundraisers.
    John you have been a leader in the restaurant community, trough good and bad times.
    Hopefully soon you will find an adventure.
    We will all miss.
    Donato

  2. This is such sad news. The Living Room was so good to us new moms and young families. We spent many a long lunch enjoying a good meal and great company. It will be missed. Nothing else quite like it in the neighborhood. We wish you the best in the future. Thank you for many great years.

  3. This is truly a shame – on the new owners of Mercantile Wharf. Sad they are doing this to a great neighbor and friend to the North End community!

  4. A New Year and a new beginning
    For John and his family. You leave the North End with wonderful memories. The Friends of Christopher Columbus Park. Had
    Some really good times in the backroom. John, your generosity
    To the Community is well known.
    On a personal level, I had many a fun Happy Hour at The Living Room which was the best deal in
    Town.
    I wish you much success, as you begin this new exciting Life Chapter.

    Cheers and continued success, happy to have known you,
    Michele Brogan

  5. The owners of The Living Room were great to our community here in the North End. The new owners of the Mercantile Building are losing a great tenant. It’s a shame that the new owners of the Mercantile Building would not commit to giving The Living Room a long term lease.

  6. Excellent restaurant run by a great family in the Haucks that always are eager to give back to the neighborhood in any way they can. Going to be sad to see them out of that space but I wish them good luck in all their future endeavors.

  7. Oh no! This is terrible news!!!
    Thank you John and Garrett for many years of supporting North End endeavors – especially the Egg Hunt in Christopher Columbus Park.
    You will be missed.
    Best of luck.
    Becca Griffin

  8. This is such a sad day for this resturant and the loyal patrons . I own a business in this building and have seen many resturants come and go here, but none like The Living Room. They created a close family for those of us that go there. Not only serving great food but also being a caring neighbor . You will be missed but never forgotten.

  9. John and family you were a piller to the North End Community. Your generosity through the years as a friend and restaurant owner were phonomenial. I will always remember you may you I wish you well.

  10. I remember back several years ago, I would walk by in the morning and the windows would look like someone fired a shotput through them. The windows would be replaced and a few days later they were broken again. It finally stopped. Did they ever catch whoever did.this?

  11. John and JB – The North End Music & Performing Arts Center has appreciated everything you’ve done for us and the North End community over the many years! From hosting the North End Cornhole Classic for three years, to our last Emmet Cohen Jazz event in your dining room, it was such a gem of a space to bring the neighborhood together. And you both and your staff were always so welcoming and generous. We will certainly miss The Living Room and your hospitality!

  12. Such a bummer.

    I have a pretty funny story to share. We had our daughter’s birthday party at the Living Room one year – prob around 4 years ago. The late and great Beverly waited on us as Jenny the Juggler 🤹‍♀️ entertained the kiddos.

    Bev nearly fainted when she saw that Jenny the Juggler had a real rabbit as part of her act — a big no-no to have a live animal in a public restaurant! The show went as the rabbit stole the show. I would always joke with Bev after the incident that the Living Room served the best rabbit stew. We miss Bev and will certainly miss the Living Room.

    Great memories. Best wishes on your future endeavors.

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