Thursday, 13 November 2008

Rare airWell, we certainly landed okay when it came to the apartment we stayed in in New York. The pic above shows the view from our complex's roof terrace! Honest!
We had a very roomy two bedroom, two bathroom apartment with an enormous living room and fairly flash kitchen, and a balcony, in a historic building right opposite the NY Stock Exchange.
In the pic below, taken from the steps of Federal Hall, where George Washington made his inaugural address after becoming the first US President, you can see the NYSE to George's right, and our roof terrace over his left shoulder:The entire 40-odd-storey building and the building next door, which is right on the corner of Wall Street, were once upon a time the headquarters of the JP Morgan financial corporation. In 1998, they were both due to be demolished to make way for a new stock exchange building and office tower, but that all screeched to a halt after 9-11.
Instead, the two buildings were made over by Philippe Starck, converted from offices into very trendy condos and apartments. There was an Hermes shop on the ground floor, and in the lobby there was a ginormous crystal chandelier hovering just over the floor, recycled from the original Morgan Chase office building.
I don't understand why I have no pics of the inside of our apartment — but it was very groovy, and totally unlivable. A triumph of design over function. One bedroom was almost open to the living room, save for being slightly higher and having a half wall.
The main bedroom suite had no windows, and the wall between it and the front bedroom didn't go all the way up to the ceiling, to allow in a sliver of light and air.
And Will ended up sleeping on a blow-up mattress in a cupboard that was slightly bigger than his bedroom here at home!
The living room furniture was all very black, and very uncomfortable. You just can't lounge on a hard, shiny black leather couch with a low-slung back!
But we had so much fun, and were hardly there during the day anyway.
The amazing thing was the roof terrace, called Starck Park ...... with its water feature like a giant tap, and glorious view of the facade of the NYSE. It also had a ping-pong table, a huge dining table where you could hold dinner parties, and an open-air fireplace. Yum.
Security was understandably heavy in this area. The roads are all closed to cars, and there are patrol boxes and security guards everywhere. Ground Zero is only a short walk away — and it was really very spooky to consider what must have been happening in this area on that fateful day.
The location was otherwise excellent. It was a walk away from Tribeca, SoHo, Battery Park and the Hudson River ...... and a stone's throw from the out-of-this-world apartment of Nick's grandparents, who have 120-degree windows with a view of New York Harbour and across the Hudson River to the Jersey shore — this is just part of it, with the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island (click on it for a bigger image): We were also a short stroll away from the famous Wall Street Bull. How that poor beast must have suffered at the hands of our late-night revellers ...(Thanks, Iman, for your pics!)

1 comment:

Fairlie said...

Wow! Looks like you had a fantastic time. (And starting to get a little excited myself now too..!)