‘Central Perk’ pop-up shop opens in SoHo for ‘Friends’ 20th anniversary

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SOHO (PIX11) -- They’re the "Friends" who needed no invitation and for 10 years, viewers welcomed them into their homes making Rachel, Phoebe, Monica, Chandler, Joey and Ross household names.

While their hilarious story lines live on in re-run heaven, the iconic sitcom which made its premiere in the fall of 1994, is marking its 20th anniversary on the air with a Central Perk pop-up shop in SoHo.

It’s where the gang called their home away from home and James Michael Tyler – better known as “Gunther” - returned to reminisce.

“It’s weird being able to sit here on the original orange couch and to see all the props,” he told PIX11 News, when he paid a visit to the cafe located at 199 Lafayette Street at the corner of Broome Street.

Tyler, who said he never really watched the show when it was on the air, admits he’ll catch an episode on cable every now and then.

“I’ll stop when I’m changing channels and think ‘Oh wow, oh wow OK. Now I get it,’” he said. “I can finally actually remove myself from being a part of it and just watch it like a normal viewer.”

While the show continues to make viewers laugh, die-hard fans can take a stroll down memory lane with Joey’s porcelain dog, some "smelly cat" litter and of course, Pheobe’s long lost porno, all on display at the Central Perk pop-up shop.

The Central Perk shop opens to the public Wednesday through Oct 18. Visitors can stop in Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., or Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.


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