Saturday, December 16, 2017

Momboisse Family Adventures New York City - Day Two - Afternoon & Evening - Brooklyn Bridge & Little Italy

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Saturday, September 23, 2017
Day Two, New York City
Afternoon & Evening
Brooklyn Bridge and Little Italy 

Gray Line Downtown Tour

After refueling at AOA Bar & Grill with grilled cheese sandwiches and beer we were ready to begin using our 48 hour Gray Line bus tickets.

This tour, and many others in NYC, are advertised as Hop On Hop Off.  This would have been a great feature, if it worked.  The majority of ticket holders get on at the beginning of one of three loop tours and do not get off until the end. So what we found was that there were  limited or no seats for ticket holders wanting to Hop On in the middle of the tour route. 

We managed to get on the Downtown Tour at stop #8 Broadway and Walker Street. 

From the open top of the double decker bus we viewed "Fearless Girl," 

 "Charging Bull," 

Manhattan Bridge, 

City Hall,

 Manhattan Municipal Building
exiting at stop #9 to walk the Brooklyn Bridge.
Or at least half of it.  

Brooklyn Bridge 

Constructed between 1869 and 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge spans the East River between the boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn.   

It was conceived by John Augustus Roebling, who had previously constructed shorter suspension bridges.   

There is a pedestrian walkway in the center of the bridge above the automobile lanes.  We were just two of the approximately 4,000 pedestrians and 3,100 cyclists that cross the bridge each day. 
A bit over 1.1 miles long, this is one of the most exciting free activities to do in New York City. At least we thought so.    

With limited amount of time for our tour, we walked to the first tower 

turned around and headed back to Manhattan.  

Freedom Tower and 

skyline of lower Manhattan 

Back on the Gray Line bus we hop off at stop #12 to tour the Lower East Side and take in the San Gennaro Festival in Little Italy on Mulberry.   

Banca Malzone 88 1/2 Mulberry Street 
turn of the 20th Century

Lower East Side

Once an overcrowded unsanitary slum (read How the Other Half Lives), the Lower East Side is now a very "hip" place with lots of restaurants, shopping and Italian signs. 

Originally we had planned on spending the evening touring the Lower East Side, seeing China Town, Little Italy, and the Jewish neighborhood.  But with our first evening cut short due to our plane being delayed out of San Jose because of a fuel leak,  we moved the Lower East Side to a short afternoon tour.

Our Google Map  describes a planned three mile walking tour where we would have visited Katz's Deli (Where Harry Met Sally), Yonah Schimmel Knish Bakery, Ten Ren's Tea, The Pickle Guys, and Most Precious Blood Church. 

Instead our abbreviated tour began at Allen Street  then west down Grand through China Town.  

Grand China Bakery - 280 Grand 

Borkee Food Market - 241 Grand

Live crab escaping 

At Mott and Grand the area changed from China Town to Little Italy with - Di Palo's (200 Grand)

Ferrara Bakery 195 Grand (since 1892)

Alleva 188 Grand
(Oldest Cheese Shop in America)
We met Tony Danza here, but no pictures.

Right onto Mulberry and the

91st Annual
Feast of San Gennaro 
 Mulberry Street

After our short tour we tried to hop back on our Gray Line Down Town Tour, but all the buses that came by were full!  The large group that had gathered over the course of one hour all hailed cabs. 
Gray Line Night Tour 

This tour departs from the Olive Garden Times Square and runs nightly every 1/2 hour starting at 6pm. Arrive 1/2 hour early to make sure you get on the bus. 

It was difficult to take pictures with our phones during the night tour, but here is a video of a few of them.  

Our tour guide suggested Bella Vita Brick Oven Pizza at 211 West 43rd Street for a great dinner option. 

We took him up on that as it was around the corner from our hotel. 

We certainly packed a lot into this day.  Now it is time to rest. 

Tomorrow out Up Town Tour 
Photography (with iphone 5s) and video by L.A. Momboisse and R.M. Momboisse unless otherwise listed below: 

Colorized photo of  Banca Malzone 88 1/2 Mulberry Street in the Italian ghetto at turn of the 20th Century taken from a photograph in a storefront on Mulberry Street.  I tracked down the picture in Images of America The Italian-American Immigrant Theatre of New York City page 12. 

Black and white photo "Men Asleep" by Charles C. Ebbets 
(or Thomas Kelley, William Leftwich).

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Momboisse Family Adventures New York City - Day Two Morning - Rockefeller Center and Central Park

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Saturday, September 23, 2017
Day Two, New York City

Up early again we have much to see on our last full day in New York City.  A quick walk from our hotel Hyatt Centric to Bouchon Bakery on E 48th for breakfast.  

We watch from the bakery the taping of the Today Show with Sheinelle Jones, Craig Melvin, and Dylan Dreyer (back to us). 

Rockefeller Center 

The centerpiece of Rockefeller Center is 30 Rockefeller Plaza a 70 story skyscraper built in 1932.  It is formerly known as the RCA Building and the GE Building.

(The building is the setting for the famous photograph taken by Charles C. Ebbets, or some say possibly Thomas Kelley or William Leftwich in 1932, Lunchtime atop a Skyscraper. Fearless workers posed without safety harnesses 840 feet above ground.) 

The unknown workers of
Rockefeller Center, Time documentary. 

30 Rockefeller Center is centered behind a sunken plaza which contains Prometheus (1934) a gilded bronze 8 ton sculpture by Paul Manship. 

Art Deco icon Wisdom (center) with Light (right) and Sound (left) , created by Lee Lawrie, loom over the entrance to this main building of the Rockefeller Center.

 The promenade to Fifth Avenue is called the Channel Gardens named for the English Channel the body of water that separates England and France.  

The bronze statues and fountains that decorate the Channel Gardens were sculpted by Rene Chambellan. 

This view toward
Saks Fifth Avenue department store. 

At the entrance of 610 Fifth Avenue the La Maison Francaise (The French Building) of America & France by Alfred Janniot,

symbolizing the alliance

 between Paris and New York. 

From Fifth Avenue the French Building and British Empire Building line both sides of the Channel Gardens. (Hence the name Channel Gardens)  

I can't resist sharing this picture of my brother, sister, and mother at Rockefeller Center in 1967.  

We continue walking north on Fifth Avenue to Saint Patrick's Cathedral and 

light candles for our family.  

None of the photographs we took of the inside of the cathedral really did her justice.  But the following video by Curbed Tours does. 

When turning to leave the cathedral Atlas (installed 1937) is framed through the center glass window.  

The view from inside Saint Patrick's.  
It is as if Christ on the Crucifix
 is staring down the Greek 

View from the street.

Corner of E 56th Street, and 5th Avenue,

Trump Tower,

  with heavy police presence.  

 The Apprentice was filmed on the fifth floor. 

Lobby often seen during the 2016 election season. This building was the Trump for President Headquarters as well as his primary residence.  

On the southeast corner entrance of Central Park is the Plaza Hotel.  This opened in 1907 and is a landmark 20 story luxury hotel and condominium apartment. It is currently owned by Sahara India Pariwar an Indian conglomerate.

Central Park 

On July 21, 1853, the New York State Legislature enacted a law to set aside 750 plus acres in central Manhattan to create America's first major landscaped public park.

Landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted and architect/landscape designer Calvert Vaux won the design competition in 1858. 

Their idea, the "Greensward Plan," began the same year.  The park was finally expanded to its current size in 1873.  

Our walking tour is about 4 miles and covers the southern end of Central Park.

We used googlemaps, and, a map we had created at home before our trip.  Using these tools we were able to see just about all of the sites we had planned on.  

 Inscope Arch 

The Pond

 Path to Gapstow Bridge 

Gapstow Bridge

Chess and Checker House 

The Dairy 

We missed the path to Central Park Zoo and the Delacorte Clock, ending up at the Balto Statue. 

Willowdell Arch to Literary Walk and The Mall

The Mall covered with American Elm

Friedrich von Schiller German Poet (Poet's Walk)

 to Terrace Bridge 

Bethesda Terrace 

Bethesda Fountain 

Loeb Boathouse 

The Ramble 

Bow Bridge 

Bow Bridge selfie with
 Majestic apartment in background.

Belvedere Castle was closed for renovation.
 We could not get any closer.  

Belvedere Castle from Central Park site 


The Dakota's 

Columbus Circle 

Next up our afternoon in Little Italy and walking the Brooklyn Bridge. 

Photography and video (with iphone 5s) by L.A. Momboisse and R.M. Momboisse unless otherwise listed below:
Black and white photo "Men at Lunch" taken September 29, 1932 from the 69th floor of the RCA Building/GE Building Rockefeller Center - by Charles C. Ebbets (or Thomas Kelley, William Leftwich).
Picture of my family from 1967 taken by my father John Filippi.
Video Saint Patrick's Cathedral Curbed Tours
Color picture of Gapstow Bridge from Central Park site.
Black and white photo "Men Asleep" by Charles C. Ebbets 
(or Thomas Kelley, William Leftwich).
Belvedere Castle from the Central Park site