Thursday, June 21, 2012

A/C on the Street

I had to catch a bus this afternoon at 67th and Lexington Avenue, right in front of Hunter College.

It was 97 degrees outside, so I found a shady alcove to stand under while I waited for the air conditioned bus to arrive.

One wall of the alcove had a large vent.

As I stood there, I started to feel a nice cool breeze. And then I realized that the vent was seeping cool air from inside Hunter College right onto me! It wasn't much, but just enough to keep me cool. What a relief! (Environmentalists, not to worry - it wasn't full blast AC seeping out of the building).

If you're ever walking down Lexington Avenue during the hot summer months and need a bit of cool air, either step into a store, or stand near this vent on the NW corner of 67th and Lex!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Out and About: Los Angeles Edition

Favorite moments from my week-long trip to LA!

Tornado shelter in Denver (stopover) - you'll never see that in NYC!

Clear crossing instructions in Santa Monica (would be nice to have in NYC):

Sunset at the beach:

Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Cookies and Cream Iced-Blended! Yummmmm... (They don't have it in NY yet!)

Cool fountain at the Grove:

Third Street Promenade (with cool fountains):

Taking the Big Blue Bus (kinda felt like I was in NY):

And finally, on my way home from the airport in NY, I spotted a man wearing a sombrero:

A nice welcome home. It's good to be back.

Friday, June 1, 2012

An Outdoorsy Feel, Inside

Over the past few weeks, I've been completely engrossed in studying for final exams. I had zero time to do what I love... travel around the city and explore.

But my life wasn't totally void of excitement (I can't stay away from adventure for too long :-))...

When I study for tests, I try to find quiet places in the city to set up shop and study uninterrupted. I wrote about some of my favorite study spots a few months ago, but I recently discovered a truly incredible urban oasis.


Located in the heart of Lincoln Center, the David Rubenstein Atrium is a gathering center for neighborhood residents, with dozens of tables to relax and eat, and a cafe to buy a small snack or coffee.

The David Rubestein Atrium has a wonderfully pleasant ambiance, and I found myself going back again and again to study.

Notice the wall colors. I love the modern design; it makes the room feel all fresh and airy.
Credit: Flickr user Kenzo*

If you look closely at the photo above, you'll notice a bunch of pipes hanging down from the ceiling. Those pipes are actually my favorite feature of the entire atrium.

It's a fountain!
Water drips out of the pipes directly into the cup-like holders on the bottom. It is a soft and gentle fountain, and it contributes to the peacefulness of the space.

Once again, take a closer look at the above photo, and notice the greenery hanging from the wall.
There is also one on the other side of the Atrium:

Credit: Flickr user Kenzo*

It's a very cool "vertical garden." At first I didn't believe that the plants were real, but then I went over and touched it and discovered that it is 100% authentic, live greenery.

A worker told me it is automatically watered every morning at 3am. Wow.

The entire atrium is illuminated with really cool light fixtures that create a natural light effect.
Credit: Flickr user Kenzo*

With the vertical garden intact, the natural light effect, and the fountain nearby, I almost feel as though I am sitting outdoors.

The Atrium also has free events from time to time. Check out their website for more information.

P.S. The David Rubenstein Atrium is one of 500 Privately Owned Public Spaces (POPS) in New York City. I just discovered that term while researching the Atrium. I think that POPS's are awesome, and I would love to discover more of them around town! Anyone care to join?