Kraeer-Fairchild Funeral Home and Cremation Center
4061 North Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale, FL
June 16, 1945 – July 29, 2019
Lucien Bahaj was born on June 16, 1945 and passed away on July 29, 2019.
No services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
August 20, 2019
My deepest condolences to Phyllis and Zac.
Lucien was a warm, intelligent, generous human being and friend.
For the past couple of weeks I have tried not to walk in front of
Lucien's so as to avoid the painful thought that he is gone.
For the last 20 years, every time I was passing by, if he were there, he would call my name and invite me in. He would offer wine and I would opt for coffee, and the conversation was always stimulating, The fact that we both could communicate in French, our native tongue, also deepened our connection.
The afternoons at Lucien’s with Lucien were a cozy respite from the
rat race of New York. He wanted to recreate the atmosphere of a Café
Littéraire where artists and intellectuals would gather and exchange ideas and sympathy, and he succeeded. He covered the walls with pictures of frequent patrons, some of them celebrities, mostly East Village artists. Finding my picture there made me feel special; it was his way to be encouraging and supportive.
He needed and delivered that extra “je ne sais quoi” of human contact
while successfully running a trendy restaurant in an extremely
competitive environment. His menus were consistently delicious
(I always loved the tarte Tatin). Lucien had no rivals. He was unique.
After he retired and moved away some time ago, he reappeared
in the restaurant once in a while, and it was always a great pleasure to
see him. The week before his passing I peeked through the window, saw him inside, and went in. We had a good visit at his table as usual. Nothing
made me think this would be our last visit. I had the old warm
feeling of being accepted, and yes I dare say loved. Lucien was a true
restaurateur in the original meaning of the Latin verb "restauror": to
renew and regenerate not only the body but the soul.
August 15, 2019
My condolences to Zac, Phyllis and the family. My father used to talk to us a lot about you in good, even though He never knew you because He was much younger than you were before you left the country. Hope you and dad are resting in peace and are happy wherever you are now.
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
August 14, 2019
We fell in love with Lucien, the man and the restaurant, in 2001, after an anniversary dinner of lapin and canard. Over the years our admiration and affection for him deepened. As artists William and I always felt at home and appreciated by Lucien, who was a kind of scoutmaster for creative people, no? When you were with him there was always keen engagement and interest. Lucien was the Absolute Best. Our hearts go out to Phyllis and Zack.
With Much Love Xxooo, Christin Couture and William Hosie
M. Shane Dolly
August 6, 2019
I always felt at home whenever I walked into Lucien's and doubly so when I would see him, (I have great memories of him holding court in Lucien's).
He created a special place and this is especially important for ex-pats from all over. Lucien created a place that made NYC feel like home for me and Lucien was always warm, charming and welcoming every time I saw him and he will always have a special place in my heart for making me, my family members and friends always welcome and leaving us with fond memories of NYC. (All my pals remembered and loved Lucien's) and are sending love, gratitude and condolences to his lovely wife and son.
Lucien, I'll always remember one summer evening that me and my mum dropped by and she was so charmed by your company. That evening sitting with you and my mum in the window seat and how you made my mum laugh and chuckle has always stuck in my head and was one of those many moments that will always make me smile and always has.
Lucien you will be sorely missed, NY will never be the same without you, and neither will we. I'm sad that you've left this mortal coil but I feel fortunate and lucky to have known you. Much love to you my friend, I hope our paths cross in the next life...xoxo Shane
August 6, 2019
I worked with Lucien at Mr. Chow in it's heyday 1980-1982 where the waitstaff was encouraged to create a menu for customers rather than leave them to order on their own. Lucien, a captain, was overheard one night telling a table -- "Don't worry -- I'll give you something from the sea, the land and the air!" And a legend was born. He was one of the most egalitarian individuals I had the pleasure of knowing. Not a prejudiced bone in his body. Our lives intersected briefly but he was and is unforgettable.
August 5, 2019
I was Lucien's trainer for a period and he was a great and kind man. It saddens me deeply to know he's no longer here. He taught me many of the life lessons he learned throughout his life with me. I will cherish his memory always and remember his kindness forever. Safe travels my friend.
August 5, 2019
With you gone Lucien...another era comes to an end. You created and held together community even as you knew the destruction and erasure was constant. Your generousity , spirit, laughter and edge which was pure NY are missed you really were that quintessential New Yorker . Thinking of you and all those long amazing afternoons and evenings at Pink Pony, of Phyllis, of Zack
of Lucien's in the afternoon dappled light, to sit with you , a glass of wine. Of all the servers and bartenders that passed thru Luciens and Pink Pony..of the poets , Ira, Rene, Gerard and others.We will never be the same.
August 3, 2019
So sad to hear. My wife and I had our first date at Lucien, we ate there the day we got married and we went every anniversary for the last 16 years. We named our son Lucien. He was so kind, loved seeing and chatting with him.
August 3, 2019
New York City and Lucien are two in one. You paved the way for so many and fed us too. Your vision is well kept with your wife, son and devotees. Thank you for your craziness, conversations, intuitive comments and creating a home at Lucien’s for the people. On t’aime même si parfois c”est pas possible d’aimer. A bientôt.
August 1, 2019
Lucien, Lucien! You're gone without a goodbye always a hello/and bear-hug,/waiting on my steak-frites,/a sauvignon blanc,/amidst your ambiance you've made world-famous/and made for me a home away from home/and for that kiss of yours,/the eternal greeting./The love we've had for each other/through food & drink, the light & dark/and something deeper,/coming from the heart./The camaraderie of the years I've stopped counting./The sunlight arcing its way through your antique windows./The golden hour,/the dusky dusk,/poems written on table cloths,/on the cracking peeling walls./The chilled wines opened like your heart./Your glowing smile,/your glowing timelessness. XXXGerard.
July 30, 2019
Lucien was always a kind and generous man to us. His restaurant was a stop for Gerard and me whenever we were in NYC. He will be missed.