Thursday, December 11, 2014

Beyler Eyubov and Monday Melodies

by Gareth Simpson
Brooklyn Jazz lovers such as Beyler Eyubov might want to make a trip over to Midtown Manhattan in the near future for some dining entertainment with a difference.

It seems that some top quality Midtown eateries have been thinking outside the box.  One example has been the addition of melodious Monday nights.  For example, the Lounge at the Wayfarer recently began hosting live jazz nights in their upstairs area on Monday nights from 7 30 to 10 30 p.m.  This features – on alternate weeks – Andromeda Torre and the Wayfarers and Julia Hatigan and the Wayfarers.

In addition to the jazz customers can now enjoy on Monday nights, there is of course the quality restaurant’s delectable menu.  For those from midtown Manhattan (or Brooklyners like Eyubov making the trip for the music) who don’t know already, there is a both a lounge bar menu with cocktails and finger foods and then a full dining menu in the dining room for those who want to make a night out of it.

But the restaurant should not get too excited about potential success; there is competition.  Just round the corner, located at 8 West 58th Street – Beautique – has also just started its Monday jazz nights.  And for those looking to spot some talent at the same time, that might be the place to go, given that the eatery has had some sightings of celebrities such as Joaquin Phoenix and Kevin Spacey.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Park Avenue Liquor on the Move

Park Avenue Liquor is on the move.  It’s not a very far transition, but, when it moves its wares to East 39th Street and Madison Avenue, its store space will expand by a staggering 50 percent.
This is not your standard, run-of-the-mill liquor store.  Like many parts of New York City, it has a history.  It is run by a 50+ year-old mom from the midtown and is a family business.  It is known for its hard-to-find wines and single-malt scotches.  One can also enjoy book signings and local liquor tastings at the store.

The store – that will measure 7,900 square feet – is due to open early next year.

Photo credits: Pettersjan (CC-BY-SA-3.0)

Monday, November 3, 2014

New Manhattan Buildings – the company that has always been known as an online shopping venue – is about to go ‘offline’ as it were.  The company is opening a real live store in Manhattan, right across from the Empire State Building.  It is due to be welcoming customers in the upcoming holiday season.

Amazon is going to use this location as a kind of guinea pig, to figure out how customers will respond to a small warehouse (since only a limited inventory for same-day deliveries will be available in New York).  It might also be home to Fire TVs, e-readers, etc.

It’s not just Amazon that wants to enjoy the bright lights of Manhattan.  It seems that JPMorgan Chase wants a piece of the pie too.  America’s largest bank is currently in negotiations with officials from the state of New York to strike a deal that would result in the development of a huge $6.5bn corporate campus, featuring two high-rise towers.  It would be in Manhattan’s far west side.

While the delicate negotiations have almost been scrapped altogether, the potential for this is huge.  But with that, comes potential problems too and both the City and Chase are currently in disagreement over quite major parts of the deal.  

Friday, October 3, 2014

Midtown Climate Change Protest

The way corporate institutions have been fueling the climate crisis has to stop.  So say Manhattan protesters who marched through the city’s financial district recently as part of #FloodWallStreet.  In their desire to disrupt businesses from going about their daily tasks, residents met up at Battery Park, marching toward Broadway and Wall Street.  They stayed there until asked to leave; around 100 individuals were arrested.  News reports indicated that around 1,500-2,000 people took place in the march.  Traffic on Broadway came to a standstill and three buses were trapped amidst protestors who refused to move.

Howie Hawkins of the Green Party explained that they were protesting due to the “fossil fuels [that are] burning up the planet.”  They came with huge balloons that they bounced, to represent carbon dioxide bubbles, chanting “we can't take this climate heat; we've got to shut down Wall Street.”

Hundreds of protesters marched through Manhattan's financial district Monday, determined to disrupt what they call "business as usual" in the corporate world. Many of the protesters had also taken part in Sunday's climate march that snarled traffic throughout the city. The demonstrators are protesting what they say is corporate and economic institutions' role in the climate crisis. They gathered at Battery Park and headed up Broadway towards Wall Street, where they said they planned to remain until being forcibly removed, and said they expected to be arrested. Police wouldn't give crowd figures but it looked about 1,500 to 2,000. "The turnout today has been great. I'm actually surprised we've gotten this big of a turnout. It's fantastic. We're keeping the street right now," said protester George Machado. Their targets were Wall Street and big polluters. "Fossil fuels is burning up the planet. So that's why we're here," said the Green Party's Howie Hawkins.  But after awhile it was obvious traffic on Broadway couldn't move an inch, with at least three buses stuck in the middle of protesters who wouldn't budge.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Slip-Slidin’ Away…

If you’re in midtown Manhattan, be prepared for a new fitness craze to start up pretty much every other week. At least, that’s how it seems sometimes. The latest one to hit midtown is Slip ‘N Slide.   

Manhattaners can find classes at the Revolution in Motion Studio.  It’s a bit like speed skating, but without the skates! 

What’s great about this new workout is that it’s fun, while providing a complete body highly intense, but low impact workout, focusing on the nervous system. This makes it very good for those recovering from a sports injury or even a stroke, etc.   And, it only takes an hour.  It was chiropractor Dr. Edythe M. Heus (who also happened to be the head trainer for ‘Spider Man: Turn Off the Dark’ musical) who started it all.

Participants wear special booties over their sneakers and two participants are on each board.  Each board has plastic bumpers fastened to the corners to help stop them sliding off. Initially it is an adjustment to just remain upright. But soon enough arm swings are added to increase the momentum of the workout. It’s great for balance too.

It’s challenging at first, but a lot of fun and truly great as a workout and an overall enhancement of body confidence.

Who knows what the midtown will get next?

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Xand Meets Manhattan

Xand is opening a new sales office in the heart of midtown Manhattan.  The firm – a principal provider of cloud, managed services, colocation and disaster recovery – is hoping to meet a growing need for its services in the New York area.  According to Yatish Mishra, company CEO and President, the firm has encountered “unrelenting demand for our portfolio of managed IT infrastructure services from clients based in New York City. Our strategy of operating data center facilities safely away from coastal flood plains and urban threats zones has proven to be incredibly attractive to clients in Tier I markets like New York. The establishment of a dedicated sales office in the heart of New York City allows our company to better serve this burgeoning market by increasing access and convenience while also introducing more options to New York-based firms.”

This won’t be Xand’s first presence in New York.  The company already has six data center facilities throughout the Northeast. One of these is the newly-expanded center located in Hawnthorne.  It also has data centers in Massachusetts, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Midtown Manhattan’s Gold ATM

Even though it was to London which the Dick Whittington referral was made about streets being paved with gold, that was the 19th century.  Perhaps now the reference could be changed to Manhattan.  Because in Midtown Manhattan, there is now an ATM that dispenses…gold!  The Stack’s Bowsers Gold-to-go ATM is located on West 57th Street.  Users (with money of course) can access gold through this machine with their credit card or cash.  One ounce gold bars are “retailing” here for approximately $1,300.  For those with less money to spare, 10 gram bars are on “sale” for around $490 and 5 gram bars for $255, subject to market fluctuations. And it’s not just gold.  Silver lovers can buy their coins too, together with a commemorative Bronx Zoo silver coins and pieces. 

The machine was purchased a couple of years ago by Andrew Bowers from TG-Gold-Super-Markt.  At the time, the US only had two others like it – one in Vegas and the other in Atlantic City.  So for those who find themselves walking around the city that never sleeps, here is yet another attraction to keep them entertained!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Canal Street Shopping Gets a Boost

It seems like SoHo’s Canal Street shopping is just about to get a whole lot better.  Elli Ausubel – who is a partner with White Bay Group Uriel Cohen – has purchased a large, 25,000 sq. ft. building.  

Ausubel purchased the building – with a group of buyers – for $24.8m. There are future plans to put a further $17.3m into it with renovations, with a bridge loan from Investors Bank.

According to Eastern Union Funding broker David Eisen (who arranged the financing for this investment), the fact that Ausubel received this bridge loan is good news and makes his decision to invest here a logical one.  He said:

"They believe they can secure a marquee national retail tenant for this space.There are a lot of people banking right now that Canal is going to be the next big shopping corridor.It was a real sign of confidence on behalf of the lender in both the borrower and also the way the neighborhood is poised to change."
In addition, given that rents in Canal Street are relatively cheap, it will gain momentum and popularity for shoppers and tenants alike.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Midtown Manhattan Comes to Florida

When it comes to high-end buildings, the nation is full of them.  But for those looking for a piece of Manhattan in the sunshine state, that’s not so common.  Thanks to Vladimir Doronin, chairman of Moscow’s Capital Group, that is about to become possible.

Together with Miami developer Ugo Colombo of CMC Group Inc., Doronin is in the final stages of negotiations to develop the extremely high end Brickell Flatiron.  The Flatiron name is most often connected to the iconic Flatiron building located in Manhattan on Fifth Avenue and Broadway.  Likewise it has a triangular shape, akin to the clothing flatirons that used to be heated on stoves.  And hence the name – flat iron.

The project will comprise 552 units and 40,000 square feet of retail development, including restaurant, lounge, rooftop swimming pool, gym, spa, outdoor lap pool and shop space.  Each unit will measure approximately 1,250 sq.ft.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Bringing British Cuisine to Midtown Manhattan

Since time immemorial, British cuisine has had a reputation for being wholly unappetizing. One only has to read quotes on the matter such as Martha Harrison: “I'll bet what motivated the British to colonize so much of the world is that they were just looking for a decent meal" as well as Bill Marsano, “the British Empire was created as a by-product of generations of desperate Englishmen roaming the world in search of a decent meal.” 

Well, this might be about to change…at least in midtown Manhattan.  Jason Hicks, co-owner of The Peacock, opened his stylish restaurant with an England-in-Midtown theme, at the end of last year.  He opened the restaurant with the intent of “showcas[ing] the best of British.”

So what is being served at this restaurant? The roasted beet salad contains sharp pickled beets, pink grapefruit, toasted hazelnuts, ricotta, purple watercress and toasted hazelnuts. To start with, for $11 one can get a creamy house-made ricotta drizzled in oil, balsamic vinegar, and oven-dried thyme, topped with sour dough. And one can order the salmon burger as their main at $18 that contains a red pepper and avocado relish.

Hmmm. While these dishes do definitely sound different, it is unclear as to whether they will delegitimize the claims made about British cuisine by Marsano and Harrison.

Still, it might be worth going just to check out the distinctly British d├ęcor that features Wedgwood china and a Waterford crystal chandelier.

Monday, May 5, 2014

New Art at New York Fair

The Spring Masters New York Fair that took place at New York’s Park Avenue Armory at the beginning of May, hosted 51 artists.  While most of these hail from America, some come from Europe and others, such as Phoenix AncientArt, which have galleries in both US and European blood running through them.  Many of these are first time exhibitors.

The particular attraction with this fair is that it is located in the hub of Manhattan.  According to manager of C Grimaldis Gallery, Jennifer Tam, “New York provides access to important local and international collectors.”  Thus as well as European and American artists, Hidenori Ishii (Japanese), Chul Hyun Ahn (Busan-born) and others are exhibiting their works.  New York is home to international art and the fair reflects that.

In addition to its global attraction, the fair is bringing more affordable artworks as well.  As one gallery spokesmen pointed out, some of the paintings that were brought to the fair were from new artists including Linda Saccoccio and Eva Malhotra.  Exhibit attendees can purchase their works for as little as $3,000.

One dealer exhibiting, Armand Bartos, explained why he appreciates this fair so much.  “The art market has become increasingly event driven, and collectors seem to like the social interaction provided by fairs and auctions ... As a dealer, I want to be at the fairs, which is where the collectors are! They come to the fairs to buy. Also the fair offers me, as a private art dealer, a good venue where my clients and I can sell fine works of art. The transactions are discreet. The works of art don’t get ‘burned’ as they are when they go unsold at auction.”

Friday, April 25, 2014

Moda Manhattan Show

The five-yearly Moda Manhattan Show – to take place between May 4th and May 6th – has been growing tremendously each year since its 2002 launch. Today, it attracts over 14,000 visitors, offering them the latest exhibit design and amenities.  Suited to its environment, it takes place in the fashion capital of the world – The Javits Center, New York City.

Presenting upscale apparel in a “refined, elegant and progressive show setting,” attendees are almost spoilt for choice ranging “from classic themes to innovative design.” At this particular show, the focus will be on “essential shades, rich tones and deep hues in many collections.”  Indeed, “Moda’s Ready-To-Wear focus continues to thrive for the Modern Contemporary customer.”

Opening times: Sunday and Monday (4th and 5th May) 9am to 6pm and Tuesday (6th May) 9am to 4pm.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Getting Away from It All

New York is an absolutely fabulous place to live.  From the city’s iconic skyline, Manhattan’s grid, the fact that everything stays open so late (bars til 4 am!) and the extremely high life expectancy (such as Susannah Mushatt Jones, 113 year old NYC resident who is currently the world’s third oldest person), this is a great place for anyone to live.

But it doesn’t come without its problems. A recent report found that the city’s 311 complaint hotline receives an average of 300,000 annual calls about the noise.  Perhaps that’s why it is so often referred to as “the city that never sleeps.”  Still, that’s not fun when you’re trying to sleep there.

So, where can you go to get away from it all?  Switzerland is pretty antithetical to everything that is New York, so this article examines three areas there and tries to get a sense of the experiences people have.

First, Saas-Fee – is a stunning area, perfect for a relaxing, “get-away-from-it-all” break.  For a couple who just wants to leave all the craziness behind for a bit, it truly is perfect.  In fact, that’s exactly what one couple did.  Marnin Michaels and Melissa Kaplan recently purchased a ski chalet in the neighborhood.  Michaels describes it as “a second-tier ski town…nestled under a ring of glacier-topped mountains and enjoys sun most of the winter.” What could be a better way of escaping it all than that?

Then there is Atelier, described by one travel reviewer as “paradise in a private winter wonderland.”  Now, New York may be many things, but privacy and silence are not words often associated with it.  The Atelier on the other hand, was dropped into the middle of a secluded private fairy tale forest and houses a fireplace, sitting rooms, gallery and more. Ambience is its middle name.

Nendaz is romantic, relaxing, picturesque and in fact, simply breathtaking. This is exactly what many people should expect to find at the Haute-Nendaz Chalet. After a few days of taking in the Rhone Valley view and biking in the alps, New Yorkers might actually be excited to get back to the hubbub of New York City…but always remember the relaxation possibilities a mere flight away!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Skylark Lounge Hits New York

If you’re looking for a place to see and be seen in Midtown, this might just be it. Located on above the 30th floor of 530 Seventh Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, Skylark Lounge includes a bar and soon-to-open terrace. It required two years of construction and an $11 million investment.

As Savitt Partners Founder and President Robert Savitt explained, “I have worked in this area for more than 30 years and we have over 300 tenants. I know so many people and everyone had the same complaint, ‘Boy, we have nowhere to go to.’”

The bar is open Monday through Friday, with weekends reserved for weddings, private dinners and other events.  In May, when the rooftop bar and terrace are open for the 141 people they will hold, people will have a view of the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building and the New Year’s Evve ball drop.

As Savitt explained his connection to the Garment District and to his vision, “My whole thing with the Skylark is that it will not only keep the fashion people that are here but it will also bring the ones who left back because now there is a place to eat and drink.”

The menu, created by Awerbuch and Kirsch, are sliders, lobster tacos and French frieds and more. The general manager, Andres Rizo, keeps everything running smoothly from 4:30 pm until midnight.

Skylark Lounge is definitely the new place to be.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Dr. Harvey Finkelstein on How New Yorkers Deal with Back Pain

Lower back pain is a major complaint of young adults throughout the world.  Particularly in America though, a substantial amount of cases are reported annually.  Indeed, according to RC Lawrence of the National Arthritis Data Workgroup, data from the national survey showed that every year, around 15 percent of adults report “frequent back pain or pain lasting more than two weeks.”

There are a variety of methodologies employed to try to tackle this issue. Some individuals, such as Dr. Harvey Finkelstein, take a holistic approach to treating these symptoms.  Together with his staff, Finkelstein looks at his patients as “individuals,” and tries to figure out what will be the most effective treatment method for each one.

While over the years researchers have struggled to find a reason why lower back pain is so widespread, little has been conclusive. Thus, while no definitive solution is available at this time, it is important for pain specialists to look at each case individually – in a holistic manner – such as Finkelstein and his staff do.

What pain management experts have concluded however, is that there are a variety of known causes of back pain.  This includes: repetitive stress, chronic illness, pinched nerves and workplace-related injuries.  Today, there are a whole slew of safe and effective therapies that can really alleviate back pain, enabling the patient to resume their day-to-day activities in a most normal way as possible.

Monday, March 3, 2014

NY To Open Luxury Bathroom Facility

Commuting New Yorkers and city visitors will be able to relieve themselves without concerns for their hygiene as soon as this summer, thanks to a new project in Manhattan.
Wayne Parks, an entrepreneur from Fairfield, CN, is opening New York’s first “luxury bathrooms and private day storage”. A self-proclaimed germaphobe, Parks came up with the project idea after touring the city (and its public restrooms) with his family. Posh Stow and Go, as he calls it, will provide commuters with access to clean facilities throughout the day. The first location will be in Midtown Manhattan near Penn Station and Grand Central Station.

Posh Stow and Go will cover 3,000 square feet, and features spacious individual bathroom stalls as well as private showers. The facilities will be open from 9:00am to 11:00pm, 363 days a year. Personal storage lockers will also be provided to members.
Patrons must sign up for a membership in order to use the Posh Stow and Go facilities. The membership fee $15, and there are also packages for three, six or ten days at a time. Those cost $8, $7 and $6 respectively.


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

7-Eleven Expands in Manhattan

7-Eleven, America’s beloved convenience store, has been working hard to expand in Manhattan since 2011. Though the chain struggled a bit in the beginning, it has since opened 37 stores in NY, with its five newest venues opening in the past six months.
In lieu of its rapid expansion, 7-Eleven launched an innovation group aimed at testing new digital offerings for customers. The project, which began two years ago, has tested products ranging from Amazon Lockers to automated key-making kiosks.
"When a retailer comes to New York City, you have to win over the city and earn your spot- you can’t just come in with your normal concept,” Johannes Leonardo’s chief executive Mike Duda said. “Utilities like the Amazon Locker and other things are something smart and extra that you can’t get somewhere else.”

The chain is also making some changes, including its new fresh salad options as well as craft beer sales. It will be changing its appearance a bit as well, softening harsh lighting and colors with new awnings and other aesthetic features. In the past, the convenience store chain has dealt with complaints from local blogs and activists. The store hopes its new improvements will help ease some of the neighborhood’s concerns while continuing to attract business from both Midtown residents and visitors.