All Things New York City

Posts made in May, 2013

This Week in Real Estate: Homeland’s Claire Danes Buys Home, Designer Berkus Sells

By on May 29, 2013 in Real Estate

Many of you may know Claire Danes as CIA operative Carrie Mathison on Showtime’s award winning show, Homeland. Just last June, Danes and her actor husband, Hugh Dancy, put their $5.988 million SoHo loft on the market. It has just been confirmed that Danes, who was born and raised in New York, and Dancy quietly purchased a new Greenwich Village townhouse in New York City for $6.876 million last November. Danes and Dancy’s new Greenwich Village home was built at the turn of the 20th century and still possesses much of its original Greek Revival style. The 4 bedroom/4.5 bath townhouse measures 3,640 square feet with generous living spaces, including 12 foot high ceilings and large windows. Each of the homes 3 levels has its own outdoor space with terraces, as well as a courtyard on the ground level and a rooftop garden. Also in Greenwich Village, former Oprah TV personality and interior designer, Nate Berkus, has listed his 1-bed, 1 bath apartment for sale at $699,000. The New York City apartment was designed and renovated by Berkus, and recently featured in Oprah’s O Magazine. Berkus, who purchased the apartment in 2006 for $550,000 according to property records, also owns a 2,000-square-foot home in New York that he purchased in 2011. While modest in size, the super stylish apartment includes a renovated kitchen with new appliances, a bathroom with Carrera marble floors, white subway tile and vintage hardware. The Zillow listing describes the apartment as, “Bright, original windows face south and west, offering views of one of the most charming corners of the Village”. Berkus recently became engaged to his longtime boyfriend, Jeremiah Brent, also an interior designer and ex-styling assistant to Rachel Zoe. The newly engaged couple bought a home in the Hollywood Hills, California in late 2012. Greenwich Village has long been a popular neighborhood for artists, actors, and other notable people to...

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What to Do in New York City

By on May 16, 2013 in Tourism

Are you planning a trip to the Big Apple soon? If you are, prepare to be amazed. New York City is the epicenter of the entertainment industry. Whether it is for the world famous restaurants or the Broadway Shows, you will never be disappointed. It is all the things you have heard about. This world class city is on all of the maps for the traveling public to enjoy! The Times Square area is called the crossroads of the world. You have all seen it on New Year’s Eve, where people from all over the world come together to bring in the New Year. Millions have attended and still do because the contagious excitement, with partygoers in the mood to celebrate. There are many marriage proposals that will take place at this festive scene, as the big crystal ball descends from its perch high above the scene. The promise of what the new year will bring about is what makes this celebration so special; the lights of Times Square glitter in a way that you will not see anywhere else in the world as the minutes and seconds are counted down to the moment that the crystal ball descends. While other cities will attempt to emulate New York, no other city can compare to it. With summer starting, your outdoor New York City tourist attractions are many and varied. Go to a baseball game at Yankee or Mets Stadium, walk and shop along world famous Fifth Avenue and smell the pushcarts offering delicious food. Go for a walk in Central park, grab a seat on a bench, and take it all in! This is a great spot for people watching. As you plan your trip to see what this great city has to offer, be sure to check out the Empire State Building and its view from the top, the Statue of Liberty with the torch being held high to welcome people from all over the world to New York. Stop by Ellis Island, where immigrants first stopped as they entered the land of freedom. Radio City Music Hall is where the Rockettes dance in a truly magnificent theater. Walk along Seventh Avenue, otherwise known as Fashion Avenue, to...

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Tribeca Film Festival

By on May 10, 2013 in Entertainment

Since it began in 2002, the Tribeca Film Festival has emerged as a premier space to highlight the power of film, help independent filmmakers reach wide audiences, and celebrate filmmaking in New York City. Over the past decade, the festival has screened over 1,400 films from more than 80 countries, and attracted over four million attendees. Every year, the festival becomes more and more popular, and the range of film submissions grows in number and diversity. The 2013 festival featured a diverse range of films including narratives, documentaries, features, and shorts. One of the festival’s top honors for best narrative went to “The Rocket,” a film about a young, impoverished boy from Laos who enters a rocket festival to help save his uprooted family. The film’s main actor, 10-year-old Sitthiphon Disamoe, also won the award for best actor in a narrative feature film. Another stunning film, “The Kill Team,” which examined a group of U.S. soldiers charged with brutally killing Afghani civilians, won the award for best documentary. Best new narrative feature went to Lucy Mulloy, for her drama thriller set in Cuba, titled Una Noche. Some films have larger goals and hope to inspire public action, such as “Gasland Part II,” which aims to bring an end to the fracking of natural gas from shale plays across the country. The fracking movement has generated a lot of buzz from both sides of the debate. Some farmers who waited in line for hours to see the film at the festival were prevented from doing so because they attempted to ask tough questions to the film’s director, Josh Fox, who was with anti-fracking advocate Yoko Ono. The film festival was founded and backed by prominent film producer Jane Rosenthal (“Meet the Fockers”, “Rent”, “Analyze That”), her husband, real estate investor Craig M. Hatkoff , and actor, director, and producer Robert De Niro (“Raging Bull”, “Taxi Driver,” “Meet the Parents”). The trio was named number 14 on Barron’s list of the top philanthropists in the world for their work with the Tribeca Film Festival. It is estimated to have generated over $750 million in economic activity for the...

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Food Truck Fare Tastes Good But Business Stinks

By on May 10, 2013 in Business

It was just three years ago that it seemed food trucks could take over New York City. Truck owner, Stefan Nafziger, was sure he would have a fleet of his food trucks dispensing Middle Eastern fare all over Manhattan. Nafziger who at one time had a Wall Street investor, says today he can barely keep up with the expenses for his one truck. While the food in New York City has transformed, the street vending business has barely changed.  Walking through the city, you will see the same street vendors selling cans of soda, super salty pretzels, and hotdogs boiling in cloudy water that you did in the ‘70s.  President of the New York City Food Truck Association, David Weber, explains that there are countless regulations required by the departments of Health, Sanitation, Transportation, and Consumer Affairs that make it nearly impossible for small business owners to operate a food truck without breaking various laws. Some rules include trucks not being able to sell food while parked in a metered space and not being able to sell if they’re parked within 200 feet of a school or 500 feet of a super market. Enforcement of these rules is strict when the NYPD is present, however in Chelsea enforcement of these rules are almost non-existent in Chelsea, and are often inconsistent. According to Thomas DeGeest, founder of Wafles & Dinges, “One month, we get no tickets, and the next month, we get tickets every day”. DeGeest, who had two trucks and five carts, couldn’t handle the cops and closed his street business to open up a stationary restaurant. Poorly paid immigrants without legal status suffer greatly from the current system. While starting a business as an immigrant in a rich country like America is seen to be easier, starting a food truck or cart business in New York City is essentially equivalent to starting a business in a poor...

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Mayor Bloomberg Continues the Fight on Foam

By on May 10, 2013 in News

Over the past decade, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has made a number of changes to better the lives of New Yorkers. From curbing smoking to cutting trans fats and sugary drinks, these regulations often seemed unthinkable at first, but with time, have lead to tangible results—increased life expectancies, a reduced number of homicides, and an increased number of tourist visits, among other accomplishments. With less than a year left in his position, Bloomberg is hoping to tackle a whole host of issues, one of which includes the New York City foam ban. The aim of the ban is to eliminate the use of certain polystyrene foam products, which damage the environment, from stores and restaurants. “Something that we know is environmentally destructive and that may be hazardous to our health, that is costing taxpayers money and that we can easily do without, and is something that should go the way of lead paint,” said Bloomberg, regarding foam products. According to Bloomberg’s office, plastic foam is responsible for roughly 20,000 tons of the city’s annual waste. It has already been banned in several major cities on the West coast, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, and Seattle. The proposal faced sharp criticism from numerous retail and fast food joints which rely on these products as an efficient and effective way to serve customers items to-go. Dunkin Donuts noted that it has experimented with and continues to experiment with various types of plastics, but none are as effective as polystyrene. They insist that banning this plastic will only lead to an increase in other types of harmful plastics, thereby reinstating the issue. With his remaining few months, Bloomberg is focusing extensively on recycling and eliminating waste. He plans to double the current number of recycling containers from 1,000 to 2,000. Since becoming mayor in 2002, Bloomberg’s reforms have touched varying facets of New Yorkers lives. In the health care sphere, he’s increased taxes on tobacco to curb smoking, banned smoking from restaurants and bars, increased HIV testing, and mandated calorie postings by restaurant chains, among other measures.  He’s also focused on environmentalism, vowing to replace the city’s current taxis with hybrid vehicles. As of 2008, over 1,000 taxis had...

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