Sunday, September 27, 2009

A Visit to Catherine the Great in New York

What a joy to have had a chance to get back to New York to meet our new granddaughter Catherine Childs Moyle (“Cece” for short). It was a perfect trip – in addition to the chance to see Cece, Rob and Janet, I was able to stay with our friend, Lisa, who lives within walking distance of their coop, and also to spend a few days in the brand new Squire Sanders New York office.

Upon arrival in New York on Sunday afternoon, I stopped off briefly at Lisa’s to drop off my bags, and we then walked over to Rob and Janet’s place on West 86th. Cece was on her very best behavior for my visit.

One forgets how small babies are!

On my way to New York I had noted a picture of a relaxing polar bear at the airport and had randomly taken a photo of it. As Cece turned in for the evening, I noted her pose to be coincidentally quite similar!

Staying with Lisa was a lot of fun too. Lisa lives in a historic building called the Ansonia at West 73rd and Broadway, just across from Verdi Park. The building, which was originally a hotel, has a long history dating back to its construction in 1904 and, in addition to Lisa, such luminaries as Arturo Toscanini, Igor Stravinsky, and Enrico Caruso have resided there over the years.

Lisa’s place is also very convenient to the Squire Sanders New York office. The office moved to the GE Building at 30 Rockefeller Plaza (aka “30 ROCK” for the fans of the TV series) a few months ago and this was my first opportunity to visit the new office. It is in a beautiful space on the 22nd and 23rd floors. The entrance to the building is just over the shoulder of the statute of Prometheus on the Plaza, and there is a beautiful view of St. Patrick’s Cathedral from the east side of the office.

I had never spent any time on the Upper West Side, but the neighborhood, which is densely residential, is fantastic. Broadway, Amsterdam and Columbus are all full of food stores, restaurants and bars, and it would probably take several trips to fully explore the area between Rob and Janet and Lisa. During the three days I was there we tried the Mermaid Inn, the Ocean Grill and Spiga Restaurant (to celebrate Rob's birthday!), and some great takeout from Salumeria Rosi. Plus I had a chance to visit the Oyster Bar at Grand Central for a lunch and wander through the Grand Central Market, with a long stop at Murray’s Cheese.

However, probably the single most memorable food stop was the GROM gelato store which is on Broadway only about 2 blocks from Lisa’s place.

GROM is an Italian chain that was founded in 2003 in Torino and follows strong sustainability and environmental standards in its operations. However, most importantly, the gelato is ottimo!

With so many things to draw us there I anticipate many more trips to New York in the future!

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