After Friends ended and they did their final interview with Jay Leno on the Tonight Show, Leno suggested the Warner Brothers keep the Central Perk set so fans could enjoy it for years to come. Based on this suggestion it became the only TV set for a cancelled show to be kept at Warner Brothers.
Darren and I on the real Central Perk couch!
My favorite story from the whole day was about this espresso machine. During the first season they forgot to cast the coffee shop guy. It was slightly problematic because they wanted to actually USE the machine in the shows and have it make its signature coffee shop type noises. They asked all the extras if they knew how to use it and only did. That person landed in the role of Gunther. In the first scene they went to use the machine in, it was so loud they turned it off and never used it again! Now even years after the show was cancelled, the guy who plays Gunther, who got the job on a complete fluke still makes $500,000 a year from merchandise sales and reruns! The cast still make $25 million a year as well which is what they made in the final season of new episodes!
The other side of the coffeeshop.
The last menu from Central Perk. They preserved it by putting hair spray on it so you could not erase it!