New York is most definitely my favorite place to come visit and explore in the US! Yes I love Italy, Spain, London, etc....but New York is the closest thing in this country to that experience but most definitely with an American / Capitalism twist! The possibilities, opportunities, and explorations are virtually endless. I have been here many times and I delight in walking the streets to find new spots and new buildings to enjoy and capture on film. I must have 20,000 photos by now and each time I come to the city I realize it is impossible for anyone to see it all! I've barely scratched the surface on Manhattan and Brooklyn and my guess I've seen only 1% of this vibrant metropolis. Again, as i always say, the more you think you've seen the more you realize you really haven't sen anything yet.....NYC goes for ever......
So where do you begin? I just keep adding to the list, and venture down new streets I've never walked, stop in new museums and galleries and showrooms I have never toured, and try new restaurants and venues from the hundreds of welcomed recommendations I receive. I LOVE exploring and experiencing new food venues so keep those coming. Thanks for all the new follows from my NYC crowd - everyone here in NYC is so great!
With limited time, as is always, the case, I try to squeeze in as much as I can! Come on - those who have traveled with me totally can appreciate that - get ready Italy travelers - this trip always gets me in fine travel training :-)!!! So this trip I wanted to see the Guggenheim Museum - I have never been. Isabel and I of course walked from our Midtown Manhattan hotel through Central Park and made our way to the Museum on north 5th Avenue along the east side of Central Park. Of course with every Frank Lloyd Wright project there was controversy! The project was conceived in 1943 when Wright received a letter from art advisor to Solomon Guggenheim asking him to design the new museum in New York City, Of course Wright did not think New York was worthy of a project like this and argued vehemently over its location. The site near Central Park was chosen due to its proximity yo the park and nature. The museum opened in 1959 following years of struggle and battle and following Wright's death.
The structure sought its inspiration from nature and the park. The building is an embodiment of Wright's attempts to capture the plasticity of organic forms in architecture - something he always sought to render in his work. The inverted spiral ziggurat allowed visitors to take the elevator to the top and then slowly wind their way down to the ground floor. Isabel and I wound our way up and then re-experienced the exhibits and space on the way back down. Very interesting experiences traversing both directions. The Guggenheim is most definitely one of Wright's crowning jewels of his late career. I encourage you to experience it.
Of course after all that walking we had worked up an appetite. So with a quick stop at Dean and Deluca for a salad we made our way back to the hotel for a cat nap. We overslept and realized our driver, Ludwig, was picking us up in 15 minutes for a fantastic and romantic NYC date night I had planned! I have my favorite restaurants I frequent but I was given a new recommendation by several clients - Blue Hill in Greenwich Village. WOW!
Blue Hill is a little gem hidden three steps below street level of an old speakeasy in Greenwich Village just off Washington State Park. Blue Hill's menu showcases local food and a wine list from nearby farms, including the Blue Hill Farm in Great Barrington, Massachusetts and Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture. We chose the "Farmer's Feast" a six-course tasting inspired by the week's harvest. Ok don't panic - these courses are virtually small, elegantly and artistically prepared and presented morsels on slate squares. From the Montauk swordfish, to the Blue Hill Farm Pig, the range of flavors was diverse and inventive. A total visual and savory experience. Add the beautiful, calm, and sophisticated interior and setting and talk about a sexy start to our evening!
Ludwig was then waiting for us to traverse us across town to Rockefeller Center and some sunset cocktails on the roof of the Sixty-Five Bar and then dancing to 40's and 50's standards in the Rainbow Room.as performed by the Max Weinberg Orchestra. Fresh off a whirlwind 2-1/2 year, 175 concert world tour with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, it was a nice touch to ride the elevator up from the 65th floor with none other than Steven Van Zandt himself. That was a nice touch!
So nice to experience the elegance of a time that has sadly long passed us all. Everyone was nicely dressed, people danced in each other's arms, and there was just a feeling that Frank Sinatra was somewhere in the room. I love that era and the class, grace, and sophistication that went with it.....I wish we could bring that back!