I’m an uptown girl, but not necessarily by Billy Joel’s standards. I live on 97th street and aside from the biannual Staten Island Ferry ride to visit the grandparents; I rarely schlep my 6-year-old son much lower than Union Square.
Yesterday the weather was ripe for an afternoon on Manhattan’s Southern coast. We ventured down and were greeted by gorgeous waterfront views, larger than life sculptures and a whole lot of pennies.
First stop was the South Street Seaport to see The New York City Waterfalls. Comprised of four man-made waterfalls along the shorelines of Lower Manhattan, Brooklyn and Governors Island, The Waterfalls was created by artist Olafur Eliasson.
They were beautiful; we enjoyed the falling water – the sound, the serenity, the magic if you will.
With Battery Park City as a destination, our walk took us through an eyeful.
In the central fountain outside the new 7 World Trade Center, we saw this tremendous Jeff Koons sculpture of a balloon flower. Standing at nine feet, this multi-lobed mirror-polished, stainless steel sculpture tempted the boy to climb and the adults to love themselves in red.
After the flower, we found ourselves facing the only above-ground remnant to survive the September 11th attacks: The Staircase. These 37 stairs once connected the outdoor plaza of the twin towers to the street below. It will eventually be placed in the National September 11 Memorial Museum.
Then we took a Star-Wars-like footbridge across the highway.
Soon we came to the The Irish Hunger Memorial. Located on the corner of Vesey Street and North End Avenue, it is dedicated to raising awareness of the Great Irish Famine that killed hundreds of thousands in Ireland between the years 1845 and 1852.
Beautifully landscaped, like a gorgeous piece of Ireland in lower Manhattan, the memorial contains stones from all of the different counties of Ireland and incorporates an authentically-recreated Irish cottage of the 19th century.
My six year old used the chimneys to hide from the Star Wars’ Storm Troopers.
Continuing on our walk, we see this idyllic place.
We dinner at PJ Clarke’s where the view trumped the food.
The last stop of our downtown loop was Penny Park. Located within the Nelson A. Rockefeller Park on the Hudson River, Penny Park is Tom Otterness’s public art piece. Officially entitled The Real World, we enjoyed every inch of this park.
With vast gorgeous Jersey City views on one side (yes I used gorgeous to describe Jersey), the expanse of blue sky above us and the green lawns surrounding us, the copper-filled playground was invited us to find treasures at every corner.
Near the water fountain, at the chess table and below our feet.
We followed the water around Manhattan … and eventually the water left us a heart.
I heart NYC.