Situated 3 blocks from the junction of Fifth and Penn Avenue in Pittsburgh’s East End and built as a utility barn circa 1880, the multi-unit/multi-use PointBreezeway structure has seen ongoing incarnations. The ideal location, along with its urban-cottage architecture, has helped it to remain a “community corner” of neighborhood activity for over a century!
The current “PointBreezeway” has housed families, a tavern (then speakeasy!), a family grocery market, a tea room, antique and boutique sales, massage therapy, Steve and Sheila Weiner’s “the Prop Shop”, as well as artist Steve Hankin’s painting place and studio.
Proximate to lovely Point Breeze homes, the New Church and Pittsburgh Sterrett Schools, St. Bede Parish, the Frick Art and Historical Center, the Frick Park Lawn Bowling Greens, Homewood Cemetery, Reynolds Motors, as well as the beloved Frick Park Market (once operated by local legends Bob and Ron Fuchs).
Since 2000 c.e., the big, old, two-and-a-half story, white house at the corner of Reynolds Street and Leroi Road has hosted educational classes, literary and conversational salons, musical concerts, public service events, weddings and receptions, gatherings for fun and fund-raising, private meetings, along with board meetings of the neighborhood’s Point Breeze Organization.
Meet Lauren and Johnny
PointBreezeway is Lauren’s childhood home. She grew up there with her dad, Dennis, who you’ll meet below. It was a very unique house to live in to say the least! It didn’t look like it does now. She remembers the days of her dad dreaming up different ideas for the building and what it could be and truly admired his creativity and imagination.
Johnny and Lauren were high school sweethearts who reconnected in 2020 (twenty years later!) and now work side-by-side running the events and City Cafe. They live close by with a gaggle of boys: Miles, Leopold and Bentley.
Working the businesses together is truly special to them. Not only because they love what they do and the ability to grow it, but because they share early teenage memories together and the house was always a part of it.
It doesn’t get sweeter than that.
Dennis, started renting the middle sliver of PointBreezeway (then a triplex) back in 1990. Lauren spent a lot of her childhood there with him. Growing up with dad meant lots of home cooked meals, sleepovers with friends in the tent he would pitch in the backyard, caroling around the neighborhood during the holidays and always lots and lots of gatherings there at the house. She remembers sitting in the dark, little dining room (the now very light and bright speakeasy) and Dad said to her “one day, you’re going to be able to see all the way to Frick Park from right here”.
Well. He did it. With visions of a cafe in mind, he bought the property in 2000 and started a major construction project. The French doors went in and lots of walls came down. The cafe never happened but many informal gatherings, art shows, courtyard sales, poetry nights, concerts, dances and celebrations did. He certainly has a knack for hosting and entertaining…that’s for sure.
Years passed and it became quite clear that he was putting more into the house than the house was giving back. There was still so much that sat unfinished. It was time to let it go.
That’s when Lauren stepped in, and, well…. Welcome to PointBreezeway.
I don’t ask you to love me always like this, but I ask you to remember.
Somewhere inside of me there will always be the person I am tonight.
– F. Scott Fitzgerald
PointBreezeway is so quaint and beautiful, it required very little from our end to plan or decorate. If you are looking for a place to hold an intimate event – wedding, shower, brunch – where the space will be nearly as special as your day, PointBreezeway is the perfect spot.