I took lots of spending money to New York but, of course, there is so much to do that’s completely free. The High Line is definitely one of the coolest freebies in Manhattan – this elevated former freight railway line, which runs over the streets of Chelsea, has been turned into a sort of mid-air park, complete with loungers, meadows and lawns. And of course there is more striking street art. Go at sunset for great views of the river.
Art from the High Line
They say the Staten Island Ferry is probably the only thing in New York that’s cheaper than it was almost 200 years ago – it’s free now, down from a whopping 25 cents. This takes commuters to and from Manhattan but really, it’s full of tourists. It won’t give you a close-up of the Statue of Liberty but it will give you a pretty good view of it, and of downtown. Stand at the bow for the best views on the way back to the city.
Grand Central Station is one of those New York cliches – it’s been done to death in film and television, and in black and white prints from John Lewis (which I’ve been guilty of buying in the past 10 years). But it’s still spectacular and it’s a lovely reminder that there was once a time when train stations were architectural triumphs, not just obnoxious piles of concrete and dark, stuffy platforms.
From completely free to a bit of a rip-off: the Guggenheim. I was really excited about going to the Guggenheim because I am a fan of the building’s architect, Frank Lloyd Wright. But the admission was $22 and we didn’t get to see much for our money because an artist called James Turrell apparently requested that all of the art that usually hangs in the atrium (the gallery that spirals up, giving the building its distinctive shape) be removed for the benefit of his installation in the main entrance. Fair enough – it was a light installation and it did look fantastic. However, the majority of the gallery beyond the atrium was also pretty bare and the queue to get into Turrell’s exhibition on the top floor was too long for us to get in by closing time. What a rip.
Still, I was most excited about seeing the building itself, which was beautiful.
Onto some general bumming around…
New Yorked-up – Auriol in her new Brooklyn sunglasses and vintage t-shirt from the East Village.