12th Ave | 11th Ave | 10th Ave |
9th Ave | 8th Ave | 7th Ave |
6th Ave | |
5th Ave | Broadway |
Park Ave S | Lexington Ave | 3rd Ave |
2nd Ave | 1st Ave
U.S. Postal Service Vehicle Maintenance Facility
534: PaceWildenstein; one of a number of galleries here in the Chelsea gallery district.
530: Feature, gallery; IndoCenter of Art and Culture, South Asian cultural center
526-530: Derek Eller Gallery
510: The Pace Gallery represents some of the world's best-known living and dead artists, including Richard Avedon, Alexander Calder, Christo, Willem de Kooning, David Hockney, Maya Lin, Louise Nevelson, Isamu Noguchi, Claes Oldenburg, Pablo Picasso, Robert Rauschenberg, Mark Rothko, Robert Ryman, Julian Schnabel, Kiki Smith and Saul Steinberg.
Bridging the street here is a disused elevated railroad that was used to transport
freight along the Westside waterfront, replacing the street-level tracks at 10th and 11th avenues that earned those roads the nickname "Death Avenue." Built in 1929 at a cost of $150 million
(more than $2 billion in today's dollars), it originally
stretched from 35th Street to St. John's Park Terminal,
now the Holland Tunnel rotary.
Partially torn down in
1960 and abandoned in 1980, it now stretches from Gansevoort almost
to 34th--mostly running mid-block, so built to avoid
dominating an avenue with an
elevated platform. In its abandonment, the High Line
became something of a natural wonder, overgrown with
weeds and even trees, accessible only to those who risked
trespassing on CSX Railroad property.
In 2009 it was
opened to the public as New York City's newest park; it truly
transforms its neighborhood and hence the city. This section of the park was opened to visitors in 2011.
547: Chelm and Read gallery
545: Oddly angled 20-story building is the
Chelsea Arts Tower, built in 2006 to house galleries
and other art-related businesses. Some tenants include
Marlborough Contemporary, the Flag Art Foundation, Karla Otto NY and Glasshouse Chelsea.
The building features in the TV show Daredevil
as the Yakatomi Building, infiltrated by Matt Murdock and Elektra.
High Line Park
438: New York's first Municipal
Lodging House for the homeless opened here
in 1909 with nearly 1,000 beds, a number
that proved to be woefully inadequate.
Dr. John Lovejoy Elliott, a leader in the
Society for Ethical Culture and founder of the
Hudson Guild, an important Chelsea social agency.
Penn Station South
From 23rd to 29th streets between 8th and 9th avenues is a 1962 housing co-op built by the
Ladies Garment Workers Union.
343: St Columba Church, named for an
saint noted for converting the Picts and
confronting the Loch Ness Monster.
331: St Columba School
329: St Columba Convent
On July 12, 1871, in the "Slaughter on Eighth Avenue," as many as 70 people were killed between 25th and 23rd streets when Irish Catholic snipers attacked an Orange Societies Parade guarded by 3,000 police and militia soldiers.
Corner (294 8th Ave): In 1951, this nail joint was The Balkan, a Yugoslavian restaurant.
276: Midtown Lumber
230: Fashion Industries High School (back entrance)
Corner (252 7th Ave): Chelsea Mercantile Apartments
used to be a federal government building (INS?)
dating to 1906. Now has Whole Foods on the ground floor.
Corner (300 8th Ave): Kyung's Fruit & Grocery is on the site of the
Spartacus Greek Workers Educational Center, which was
center of a large Greek community. Earlier it was the Utah House hotel.
207: Graphic Arts Building
Corner (200 W 26th):
Chelsea Centro; new apartments. Built on the site of Guffanti's, gaslight-era restaurant.
On September 22, 1915, during construction of the IRT subway, 7th Avenue collapsed from
here to 23rd Street, killing 25 people.
Corner (261 7th Ave): Truemart Discount Fabrics,
a garment district survivor.
May have been one of The Seven Sisters,
a row of seven houses at the west end of this
block that housed bordellos run by seven supposed
sisters. They maintained strict standards for
clients; sometimes they were required to wear evening clothes or
bring flowers for the employees.
168: Milanes Restaurant, Spanish and American Food
150: Chelsea Design Center
130: Food for Thought Catered Events is on the
ground floor of the former offices of the media watch group
(1988-2001). Filmmaker John Sayles' production
company has its offices here.
124: Johny's Grill & Luncheonette, friendly hole-in-the-wall
122: Old Paper Archive, vintage posters etc.
110: Chelsea Antiques Building
Corner: This 2007 highrise boasts
of being "Chelsea's tallest condominium"
at 40 stories. Replaced the Olympia Deli, where for
a time I used to eat almost every day.
Lefcourt Clothing Center
Corner (275 7th Ave): This 1929 building originally housed garment workshops,
one of the first lofts built for that purpose; now houses the garment workers' union
159: Diamond Needle Corp. This block used to be
dominated by industrial sewing machine shops like this one,
catering to Garment District sweatshops; they're still here,
but they're dwindling. This building housed the offices of
OutWeek, a short-lived gay magazine founded in 1989
that outed celebrities like Malcolm Forbes and Greg Louganis.
133: Was the Gay Cable Network, shut
down in 2001 by the city for running a sex
club on the side. Now home to the
City Quilter, quilty supplies and lessons.
119: Peter Westbrook Foundation,
where the Olympic fencer teaches swordfighting
to inner-city kids. (Star fencer
Keeth Smart is a graduate.)
101: Was the Antique Cafe, catering to the
flea market crowd. This building was busted as a brothel in the 1990s,
proving that the Tenderloin tradition is not dead.
This 31-story apartment building,
put up in 2000, started the high-rise
boom along this stretch of 6th Avenue.
48-54: Superior Sewing Equipment is on the
ground floor of a pioneering loft building built by
Abraham Lefcourt, who helped establish the Garment District.
40: Showplace Antiques
36: Fred Silberman (Italian collectibles, 1920-1960)
32: New York Dog Spa & Hotel
28: Site of Edith Wharton's mother's
house, where Wharton had her wedding breakfast.
26: New York Antique Center; upstairs is
Tannen Magic (est. 1933),
a leading illusionists' shop.
18: The Arlington Hotel was
once the headquarters of mobsters
Louis "Lepke" Buchalter and Jacob "Gurrah"
Shapiro, who in the late 1920s and '30s
controlled the garment district. In
1939, the hotel offered rooms for
1960, you could get a room for as little as
$1.75, and was described as "fine for adventurous young men
or couples." It's now a Comfort Inn, no longer using the Arlington
moniker, and seems to cater to Asian travellers.
Nos. 18 & 20 were the site of the New-York Southern Club, for
people born in the South or who lived there before 1864.
16: There used to be a Clergy House here designed
Richard Upjohn (1866) for Trinity Chapel, now St. Sava.
6: 40/40 Club, sports lounge
owned by rapper Jay-Z, named for the small
group of baseball players who have hit 40
homeruns and stolen 40 bases in one season.
Corner (1115 Broadway): Was Liu Imports, Chinese antiques.
On this site was Hoffman House, an
elegant hotel whose bar shocked Victorian NYC by displaying
Bouguereau's Nymphs and Satyr -- which became a major
tourist attraction. The painting belonged to Edward S. Stokes, an
owner of the Hoffman, who had spent time in Sing-Sing for shooting
financier Jim Fisk, his rival for singer Josie Mansfield's
affections. Publisher William Randolph Hearst lived at the Hoffman when
he first came to NYC in 1895. In 1901, the bar posted private detectives at
every entrance during ax-wielding prohibitionist Carry Nation's visit to New York.
This 35-story apartment building in 2007 replaced a parking lot
with big weekend flea market--featured
in the children's book My New York.
"Kristen," the professional escort whose assignation
with Gov. Elliot Spitzer led to his
resignation, lived here at the time the
41-51: Sino-Euro Classic Furniture & Arts;
Samuel French Inc., "House of Plays," is on second floor. Chances are
your high school play came from here. A former building at No. 49 housed the
National Conservatory of Music c. 1905.
27: Formerly the rectory of Trinity
Chapel, this was the address of Rev. Morgan
Dix, Trinity's pastor, who in 1880 was the
target of a bizarre campaign of harassment.
Hundreds of forged letters were sent out
that produced a steady stream of salespeople,
rag-buyers, lawyers, irate husbands, seekers of stolen
property, etc., to the rectory's door. The
perpetrator turned out to be a former
Trinity Sunday school teacher and petty
criminal who worked under the alias
St. Sava Serbian Orthodox Cathedral
15: Before 1943 this was Trinity Chapel
Episcopalian, built 1850-55 to a
Upjohn plan. (He also did downtown's Trinity
Church and what is now The Limelight.) Diarist
George Templeton Strong was a member of
the congregation; novelist
Edith Wharton was
(unhappily) married here in 1885.
After Boss Tweed's daughter's wedding here
in 1871, she received an estimated $700,000
in wedding gifts--a display of excess that
may have led to Tweed's downfall.
After the sale, the church was renamed for
the first archbishop of Serbia. The exiled King Peter II
of Yugoslavia attended mass here in the 1940s.
13: St. Sava Parish House; originally Trinity
Chapel School (1860). Sort of a fairy tale-looking building.
11: Haas Kitchenwares
Corner (1123 Broadway): Townsend Building
Marks the grave of Gen.
William Jenkins Worth, namesake of Ft. Worth, Texas and
downtown's Worth Street. After fighting in the War of 1812, he
became commandant of cadets at West Point. During the Seminole Wars,
he pioneered the targeting of civilian populations and the use of
starvation as a tool of warfare. Fighting in the Mexican-American
War, he led the capture of Mexico City, and was given command of the
newly conquered terriories of Texas and New Mexico. He died of
cholera in San Antonio in 1849, and was buried here in 1857.
Rectangular structure leads to Water Tunnel No. 1, carrying
water from Catskills.
In 1899, an arch made of wood and plaster was erected over 5th Avenue between 25th and 24th streets to celebrate
Admiral George Dewey's destruction of the Spanish fleet in Manilla Bay. Only Dewey's rapid fall in popularity prevented it
from being replaced with a permanent stone version.
Block (202 5th Ave): Commonwealth-Criterion is
Commodore Manufacturing and Criterion Bell & Specialty, makers of Christmas decorations--part of the
Christmas District. The site of Worth House, a hotel that
by 1900 housed the Berlitz School of Languages. The
present building, dating to 1918, was the flagship store
(with science museum) of the
A.C. Gilbert Company, a toy company that
made the Erector set, radioactive chemistry sets and American Flyer
Madison Square Park
The 1807 plan set aside 240 acres in this
vicinity as The Parade, to be used for military training.
In that same year, the U.S. Arsenal was
built here to defend the strategic
intersection of the Bloomingdale Road
(now Broadway) and the Eastern Post Road.
By 1814, when the park was named Madison Square
after the then-current president, it had been reduced to 90 acres.
In 1847, when Madison Square Park was opened, less than seven acres remained.
The park, which was laid out in its current form in 1870, was the center of New York society in the 1860s and '70s. "The vicinity of Madison Square
is the brightest, prettiest and liveliest portion of the great city," James McCabe wrote in 1872.
In July 1901, an attempt to turn seating in the
park into a for-profit concession sparked rioting.
The park provides a setting for O. Henry short stories like
"The Cop and the Anthem" and "The Sparrows in Madison Square").
The U.S. Arsenal was converted by
1824 to the House of Refuge of the
Society for the Reformation of
Juvenile Delinquents--the first
such institution in the country.
Admiral Farragut Memorial
1881 commemoration of David Glasgow Farragut, Civil War fleet commander, best remembered for his "damn the
torpedoes, full speed ahead" line. Sculpture by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, pedestal by Stanford White. Considered to be the
first use of Art Nouveau in U.S.
Credit Suisse/First Boston
Corner (11 Madison): Built in 1929 as the Met Life North Building. One hundred stories were planned,
but the Great Depression stopped construction at 29, leaving the building looking like the base of the Tower of Babel.
Expansions took over entire the block by 1950. Designed by Harvey Wiley Corbett, it's considered an Art Deco masterwork--
particularly the amazing corner arcades. Price Waterhouse is a tenant here.
This building is also home to two expensive-but-worth-it restaurants, both owned by Union Square Cafe's Danny Meyer:
Tabla (Indian fusion) and 11 Madison Park (New American).
Appellate Division Courthouse
Corner: Built 1900 in Italian Renaissance
style; much care was lavished on the building's
exterior and interior art, including statues of
famous lawgivers and civic virtues. (There's an
empty pedestal for Mohammed, whose statue was removed after Muslims
pointed out that they find such representations
idolatrous.) Landmark laws were declared constitutional
here in a precedent-setting 1975 case.
Humphrey Bogart lived here in
1926-27, in the apartment of his first wife,
45: The Stanford apartments. Named for Stanford White?
53-59: School for the Physical City; "An Expeditionary Learning Center."
Corner: The Provident Loan Society
has got to be one of the fanciest pawnshops in
the world, with a main office designed for the
nonprofit in 1909 by Renwick, Aspinwall &
102: The Gamut Bistro & Lounge; cozy faux Victorian
110: Tepper Galleries; Auctioneers and Appraisers
122: Ravi Yoga & Spa
130: The Friends House in Rosehill, a Quaker-run residence for people with AIDS, was built in 1916 as
the B.W. Mayer Building, a commercial enterprise. Note the terra cotta cow skulls, snakes and Mayan head--architect Herman Lee
Meader was noted for fanciful ornamentation. The building was bought in 1923 by the ILGWU, and in 1930 became a
trade school for the Electrical Workers. In 1971 it became the first accredited Labor College in the U.S., affiliated
with SUNY. It was purchased by the Quakers in 1994.
Rosehill is the little-used name of this neighborhood, derived from the estate of General Horatio Gates, a neglected hero of the American Revolution.
101 (corner): Strawberry clothing store
is on the site of Henry James' last home in the United States,
at No. 111, where he lived in 1875 while
he completed his first novel, Roderick Hudson,
and wrote criticism for The Nation. When he
visited the U.S. in 1881, he stayed at No. 115
with his former editor at The Nation,
69th Regiment Armory
Corner (68 Lexington): This building was the home of
Armory Show in 1913, which introduced modern
art to the United States. Organized by the
American Association of Painters and Sculptors,
a group that represented the "Ashcan School" of
social realism, the show brought
widespread attention (and initially ridicule) to
abstract painters like Matisse, Picasso,
Van Gogh and Cezanne. Marcel Duchamp's Nude
Descending a Staircase was singled out for abuse
"Fighting 69th" of the New York Army
National Guard was
''New York's only official Irish regiment,''
according to New York City Landmarks. The
troop fought in the Civil War with heavy casualties,
and took part in both world wars.
A state historian
''These armories were meant to be literal fortresses,
designed to defend respectable, middle- and
upper-class Americans from the 'dangerous classes.' ''
Corner (55 Lexington): CUNY's business school. Originally the business
school of the College of the City of New York, the
school was renamed in 1953 for for financier and
Bernard Baruch, CCNY class of 1889. This
building is Baruch's new "Vertical Campus"--a curving glass-and-brick
building that actually makes the 21st Century
seem attractive. The Lexington side
features the campus bookstore.
This building replaced RCA Victor
Studios, where Elvis Presley recorded "Hound Dog" and "Don't Be Cruel" in 1956. Other musicians to use the
recording facilities here include
Marian Anderson, Harry Belafonte and Perry Como.
160: The Carlton Arms Hotel is
funky place where each room has been individually painted by a different artist.
162: Jimmy's House, old-school Chinese,
moved here from the corner to replace Cafe Loon Loon.
Corner: Mike Due Pizza
151: Baruch College's Newman Library
157: Carpenter's Hall; Carpenters Local 157
Corner: Kelly & Ping Gramercy, Asian
grocery/teahouse/noodle shop mini-chain, replaced
old-school Chinese Jimmy's House.
Corner: The Hairy Monk, a bar, replaced
Pagliacci Due, Italian.
202: The Little Red Pet Shop
210-214: The Centennial apartments; built 1876, presumably. Are the sculpted faces Odysseus and Penelope?
223: 9th Church of Christ, Scientist
245: Spruce Ridge House apartments. Has Manhattan ever had a spruce ridge?
Corner (438 2nd Ave): Ziti Italian Restaurant
(305 E 24th): New York Towers; 1966 apartment building
Corner: NYU College of Dentistry; the
largest private dental school in the country.
432: Was Municipal Lodging House
VA Medical Center
Asser Levy Park
Asser Levy was an early Jewish immigrant, a kosher butcher, who won an important victory for religious tolerance when
he successfully appealed Peter Stuyvesant's ban on Jews in the New Amsterdam militia.
There is a footbridge across the FDR here.
(24-50 FDR): Founded in 1947 by parents who were employed at the U.N.,
this private school has students from 115 countries and staff from 70; nine languages
(including English) are studied here.
There used to be a shelter here where homeless men slept
side by side on the floor--the subject of the Diego Rivera mural Frozen Assets.