Arizona is home to the jaw-dropping Grand Canyon, crazy desert wildlife, and very hot summers.
#1 Floating Subway Map
Embedded into the concrete of Greene Street in the heart of SoHo are a labyrinth of stainless steel bars that make up the Manhattan train system circa 1985, when it was installed there by Belgian artist Francoise Schein. Dotted along this 90 foot map are 156 LED lights embezzled in landmark glass rounds that represent the stops along each train route, so go at night when they are aglow. Most people walk over the map without even knowing it’s there; it is truly a New York easter egg.
#2 Rockefeller Gardens
Apart from being the best place to see a giant Christmas tree in December, Rockefeller Plaza actually houses an absolutely breathtaking garden. 140 feet above the street lies a carefully laid out paradise complete with finely trimmed hedges, fountain pools, stone platters, and yes, even some cobble flooring. Unfortunately the gardens are no longer open to the public, but as most New Yorkers would be surprised and confused at the mention of a rooftop garden atop the Rockefeller buildings, they still qualify as a New York secret.
#3 Knickerbocker Hotel Subway Entrance
If you’ve ever taken the shuttle that runs between Grand Central and Time Square, you’ve walked right by the door the Knickerbocker Hotel. Well, it used to be. Back in 1912, when the Knick was first opened by John Jacob Astor IV (who was actually onboard the Titanic when it sank), situated in the lower level was a martini bar for the bourgeois of New York. Though the hotel has been reopened, the lower level bar remains unused, and so say some, haunted. This entrance is shut leads to that bar. The door is fixed shut now, but maybe one day will be reopened as will the downstairs space.
#4 Central Park Lamp Post Markers
There are 1600 lamp posts carefully laid throughout Central Park, and what? They give you directions? Every post has a tiny plaque with four numbers on it. The first two numbers will be the street the lamp is closest to and the second two will indicate whether it is on the east or west side. Next time you get lost, put google maps on standby and follow this pioneer’s trick.
#5 The Village Under Central Park
From 1825 to 1857 the area of Central Park between west 82nd and 89th st belonged to the first African American owned village in New York’s history. There were three churches, a school, five cemeteries, and roughly 24 lots of land in Seneca. In 1856 Seneca residents were evicted by the city, were compensated for their quite devastating loss, and within the year the community was destroyed to make way for Central Park, which opened to the public in 1857.