The owner of Ara International Grille & Bar in St. James said that it's lights out for good at this upscale restaurant.
Mike Schumm confirmed in a brief telephone interview that Ara International "is closed" and no longer serving diners. He would not comment on why the restaurant closed less than three months after its opening on Sept. 6.
The came when Schumm, and his longtime friend and co-owner Dino Vlacich, removed the white-and-red sign that read "Open for Lunch" from the top of the building overlooking the Route 347 and Route 25 intersection.
A closer look revealed the lights were closed and doors locked after the Thanksgiving Day weekend.
Ara International marks Schumm's second business project that has failed in recent months. He recently ran Bin 107 in St. James before handing it back to its former management, .
Ara International is fourth business over a 15-year period that have failed at the troubled location. The building was rebuilt in 2000 after a fire evicted a strip club known as the Brass Monkey. An Italian restaurant named Intermezzo took its place, which changed its name to Capo before finally closing in 2006.
The free-standing building stands by a vacant strip mall plagued by similar issues. closed its Lake Grove Store in July, leaving three-quarters of the strip empty except for a pet store.