Archive for the ‘Our Neighborhood’ Category
POSTED: Wednesday, February 15, 2012 7:22 am
Our own Rachel (you can meet her at the front desk!) here shares with us some beautiful photos from Brooklyn Heights. Brooklyn Heights is perhaps the most expensive neighborhood to live in in all of the outer boroughs (Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, Staten Island) and is a very historic district. The neighborhood boasts countless townhouses and mansions, and is very popular for its location. (It’s a mere five-minute subway ride to the Financial District in Manhattan, and is under a twenty-minute ride to Times Square.) A little know fact: the Huxtable family from the Cosby Show lived in Brooklyn Heights!
Here’s a popular, well, cafe (self-explanatory, yes)! Located on 84 Montague St (between Pierrepont Pl & Hicks St), it is right by the East River that separates Manhattan and Brooklyn. They offer great outdoor seating during the warm weathers as well.
Brooklyn Heights, as of 2011, has over 2100 TREES! This is a typical tree-lined street.
Here’s a beautiful view of Lower Manhattan/Financial District from the famous Brooklyn Heights Promenade! Looks at how close we are to Manhattan. (Yes, those are Rachel’s hands.)
Sunset from The Promenade!
You can see the Brooklyn Bridge and Lower Manhattan.
POSTED: Wednesday, November 16, 2011 6:20 pm
A couple weeks ago I took advantage of my New York Pass and had me a tourist day in the Big apple! Even on my day off, I forced myself to wake up by 8:00am and get going. I figured if I got to Battery Park around 10am with my NY Pass to go enjoy Ellis Island and Lady Liberty that I would be able to catch the ferry within the hour. This did not go as planned! By the time we got there (We being me and my boyfriend, Yesid) there was a line for the ferry going around the block…literally. My advice is the earlier arrival the better! Battery Park is beautiful enough on its own to visit, that we enjoyed just walking around and taking pictures. I even saw a stray turkey walking around – gotta love NYC! So, we recalculated our itinerary and decided to go to Top of the Rock and just go from there.
We could not have picked a more stunning day to visit Top of the Rock. The sun was shining, the sky bright blue, and the crispy cool Fall weather was refreshing at these great heights. 30 Rockefeller Center is so mesmerizing from the outside and within. Walking down the stairs to the Observatory ticket area you are greeted with a breathtaking cascade of crystals and reflecting light. This is the Joie chandelier all made of Swarovski crystals. Being a Saturday there were lines for everything everywhere, but our NY Passes let us skip the ticket line and go straight to security. Besides the Swarovski work, architecture and murals – my favorite part of Top of the Rock is always the light show elevator. The ceiling to the elevator is transparent so you can see blue lights zooming by as you ascend up 67 floors, and an array of lights and patterns dance within the elevator walls as reflections. Always a fun ride. I actually prefer Top of the Rock over Empire State Building because you can see the Empire State Building in view and it makes this NYC landscape that much better. Even though I have lived in NYC for 8 years, there are still so many buildings and parks and sights that I am not familiar with and are new to me. I love that there is always something new to learn about the Big Apple!
So, we originally planned to attend a walking tour in the afternoon but this changed as well. Instead of heading back down to Battery Park to take the Underground Railroad Tour, we decided to go across town to see the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. This place is huge, for lack of a better word. The Intrepid is this very impressive ship that houses the museum and an air craft hangar. We started our adventure in the Growler, a docked submarine from the cold war era. Note to those who are easily claustrophobic - this tour has extremely narrow passageways and entranceways you have to duck into. It was fascinating to see how huge this submarine is and yet how compressed the living quarters, social quarters, offices, and command stations are. My favorite was that within the small kitchen unit there is a huge old fashioned blender more than half my size, bolted to the counter. After crawling out of the Growler, we walked into the museum section and enjoyed the array of photos, models, planes, games, flight simulators and so much more. Note: for those who love roller-coasters and adrenaline pumping rides, try the G-Force Encounter flight simulator which straps two people into a small pod that can twist, turn, and drop. Not for those with weak stomachs! At the top of the Intrepid is the air craft hangar which was really impressive! From jet models to helicopters, the Intrepid exhibits aircrafts from the earlier wars to modern models. I thought the A-12 (Lockheed SR-71) was the coolest plane there.
Right after the Intrepid we hopped onto the NY Water Taxi at pier 83 right there and headed to South Street Seaport. The Water Taxi is another NY Pass attraction, and allowed us to see the sights of Manhattan by water. Although really windy, the ride was great. Our tour guide speaking on the mic was very personable and friendly, explaining some historical and fun facts of Manhattan and New Jersey.
Once we pulled into South Street Seaport we headed to the Bodies Exhibit. South Street Seaport is one of my favorite places in Manhattan. The views, the ships, the history – I recommend everyone stop by this pier when visiting Manhattan. The Bodies Exhibit was very unique. This museum exhibits the human body in a variety of perspectives and models. The thing is. The models are really human muscles, tissue, bone, organs, etc. Yup, this museum exhibits real human body parts stripped and displayed so you can really see what we look like within. Again…not for the weaker stomach due to some graphic displays.
After the long night we ended up going to a movie and were going to call it a night when we walked by the Empire State Building and decided to finish with a nice night view of NYC from one of the most popular destinations in Manhattan. Even though we went at 11:00pm, it was still very crowded! The cool thing about ESB is that it is open until 2:00am. This is perfect for those who want to live out their own scene from Sleepless in Seattle, or for those late-nighters who prefer to see Manhattan in all of its nocturnal glory.
What a day….What a city! After a very long fulfilled day, I got to know my city that much better and loved it. Minus the lines and congested crowds, New York City still has a magic that will always be incomparable and fascinating!
VIDEO of Lauren and Yesid out and about as October tourists: http://youtube/x-X2Wh00eXE on DISTRIKT’S video page: www.youtube.com/distrikthoteltv
POSTED: Thursday, September 8, 2011 9:32 am
Yesterday, despite the rainy weather, I walked over to Broadway on 40th Street for the Fashion Center Tour de Fashion bicycles event. The tents were crowded as if the weather was no issue. I proceeded through the velvet ropes, past security, and checked in.
The Fashion Center displayed thirty bicycles, each customized by New York’s leading designers to be available to the public during Fashion Week. Each bike shone and stood with their unique designs to be admired and photographed.
I walked throughout the tents more than it was necessary and looked at each bike more profoundly each time around. Every time was a new experience because I always missed a small detail that made them much cooler than before. Feathers, rhinestones, flowers, lace, bright colorful paints, and pretty baskets were very common among these fashion bicyclettes.
My favorites included Betsey Johnson, Amrita Singh, Nanette Lepore, Rebecca Minkoff and Gretchen Jones. Each bike caught my eyes a different way without having to look. It was refreshing to see Johnson’s playful approach since it followed her signature style through fashion. I love the way Amrita displayed her jewelry and Indian background. Lepore’s bright colors and wheels did it for me. I adored the tassels, purse and studs on Minkoff’s designs, it reminded me of the “downtown girl”. Gretchen Jones’ bike stood on a whole level by itself. The wooded wheels were a superb touch.
The terrific news is that each of these amazing bicycles is available to the general public free of charge during Fashion Week. Any person may borrow the bike with a valid credit card and driver’s license for one hour. Why don’t you cycle the city in style during New York City’s Fashion Week events?
Visit ride www.ridethecity.com for more information.
POSTED: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 11:18 am
There are a lot of little treasures and unknown secrets in New York City. From a cupcake café that originated the red velvet cake (supposedly) to speak-easy bars with old fashion drinks and secret passwords to enter, we sometimes miss these wondrous attractions as we walk on by. A few weeks ago as I was hunting for a gift for someone after work, I came across a small store on 35th street with old movie posters taped to the window, curled at the corners and faded from the sunlight. It was the vintage 1950’s horror film posters that caught my attention, as I am instantly attracted to the old fashioned classics and artwork during this glamorous era. At first I thought to myself –Wow, you really don’t see any ‘Mom and Pop’ video shops anymore, let alone video stores. The old storefront was a bit hidden underneath some scaffolding and squeezed between garment shops, making it that much more enticing. So I delayed my quest for whatever gift I was looking for and stepped inside.
It was love at first sight. Greta Garbo, Peter O’toole , Cary Grant, Cate Blanchet, John Cusack, Robert DeNiro. Their faces and hundreds more greeted me in frozen smiles and graceful poses captured in the artistic moment within the frame of a photo or movie poster. Being a movie nerd, I felt right at home! The moment you walk in, the fragrance of old library books and that awesome dusty-attic-mildew smell meets your nostrils and a sense of nostalgia hits you even though you have never been there before. This was a library, a haven, for old movie posters and postcards. When I say library, I mean LIBRARY! Not only are there stacks upon stacks of boxed movie posters of different sizes, covered in a protective plastic – but there are multiple shelves of large binders filled with original photos of hundreds of actors and actresses. For instance, I noticed that there were about four large 3-ring binders marked “Kirk Douglas” with nothing but photos, posters, and more pertaining to Mr. Douglas and his movie career. Both walls are lined with these shelves and binders stretching all the way into the back of the store, as well as a 3rd wall facing the entrance. Basically, my eyes did not know where to look! The clerk, Pythagore (awesome name) was busy slipping posters into the protective sheets as I crept in, scanning over endless prints and postcards. I flipped through three boxes of postcards with images of different movie posters to old Valentine’s cards from the 1950’s to miscellaneous black and white photographs of random people. Just an endless trove of timeless images and faces.
Having moved three times from its original location, Jerry Ohlinger’s Movie Materials store has been in business for 35 years and counting. I had the pleasure of speaking with this movie-mad owner, and he explained some interesting details. For instance, the lowest poster sells at $15, and the highest would be closer to $5,000 and up. There is only one store, but there are 2 warehouses which. All three house over 400,000 prints in each location! I was curious if Mr. Ohlinger is worried about his business surviving in today’s digital and suffering economy. He responded that there is always a need for these prints. Movie house, production companies, networks and more demand these archived posters and prints for sets, in which produces good business. His business offers custom orders for specific prints if desired, allowing everyone to connect with the past through posters and prints. Apparently Spike Lee utilized many prints directly from Mr.Ohlinger’s collections for his film Malcolm X in 1992. So, it is safe to say that Movie Material Store is a unique spot that has a deeper history and presence in this big city.
Written by Lauren Macé
POSTED: Friday, August 19, 2011 11:05 am
There is a comic heaven in Midtown, and luckily it is two blocks away from Distrikt’s front doors! Located on 40th Street at 7th Avenue, Midtown Comics holds two enormous floors of an impressive collection of comics, magazine, graphic novels, anime, manga, t-shirts and apparel, and much more. The store opened its doors in 1997, followed by its two sister stores in Grand Central (2004) and Downtown Manhattan (2010). The company has built its reputation over the years, and is now known as the leading vendor of comic books, manga, and graphic novels.
Once you climb the dark, narrow staircase, admittedly a bit intimidating, you find yourself in a large bright room with fantastic views of Times Square. Sunlight hits every corner of the store, as eager, young and older customers peruse the overwhelming shelves of comic goodness.
On the register, the young employees respond to all guests’ questions in professional and amiable tones. A tall man was helping a customer interested in selling his vintage comic to the store. The store buyer opens the book and inspects it with great care.
Unable to decide which section to look at first, I spun around and observed the room from floor to ceiling. Occasionally, my eyes jumped to the large signs advertising a new release or specials. I decided to start on the left from the “manga” section, and work my way around bookshelf by bookshelf.
I felt a rush of joy and my inner child come back when I saw all of my childhood favorites. I walked the countless aisles and admired the various selections of Spiderman, Captain America, The Punisher and Superman comics. The most exciting part was the Ninja Turtle backpack hanging on the wall!
I climbed the staircase to the second floor and was greeted by a life-sized Spiderman statue. Posters of all action superheroes decorated the walls, and on the right, collectibles were displayed beautifully on glass shelves. I moved from display window to display window, admiring Star Wars, Spiderman, X-men, and even Asterix and Obelix figures.
Near the back of the room were hats, shirts, bags of all of your favorite super heroes. There were playing cards, games, and action figures on the left. I overheard a little boy say to his aunt with excitement, “Finally you’re buying me something!”
Before I left, I glanced at the countdown clock to this year’s Comic Con in Manhattan, and smiled to myself.
For purchases, information and future events visit: http://www.midtowncomics.com/
By: Paola Mathe