One of the crown jewels of Manhattan, the grand dame of New York City, is turning 100. We are talking, of course, about Grand Central Terminal. A century ago, on February 2, 1913 – after a decade of construction – the building that would revolutionize commuter train travel opened its doors.

There isn’t anything to say that hasn’t been said before about the building’s grandiose and tumultuous history. So, we offer something else to commemorate one of the most amazing buildings in the city: a 360 look at Grand Central. Part of a larger project photographing iconic landmarks in glorious 360 degrees, we teamed up with Shots 360 and photographer Thomas Erh, the man behind the lens of interactive 360ยบ panoramic photography, to document some of our favorite Old New York places.


Enjoy!

5.31.2011

The Kite Man of Central Park

If you've been to the Great Lawn during the past 20 some summers, you may be familiar with Frank - the Kite Man of Central Park. He is a master of kites and has been flying his creations for decades. Last fall we  had the opportunity to make a short documentary about Frank and his craft. Here is a sneak peek.

5.17.2011

A day at the museum

I had been meaning to go to the Transit Museum for a while. I finally managed to get there recently and it was everything I imagined - and then some. They have several fully restored vintage subway cars on display.

















This one has padded rattan seats. 
And while these look wickedly cool, I would think that on a hot summer day in a non-air conditioned subway car, the seats probably would get super gross and "pinch-y". 
Before fluorescent bulbs, the subway was lit with much more flattering incandescent lighting. Sure it probably gave off a lot of heat and I'm sure people probably burned their hands as they reached for the metal straps. But I also bet no one that that awful green skin undertone courtesy of the current subway lighting.




I Love Old...Milan, Italy



Returning to a place you once lived is always interesting. Instead of rushing through the same streets day in and day out, you actually take time to see the beauty in the seemingly mundane.




It was great to return to Milan as a tourist, but without doing tourist-y things. Riding bikes and the tram, an old-fashioned street car.



I was riding the tram when I saw this sign for an old barber shop. I got off at the next stop so I could experience some of this old Milan. But this being Italy, a hundred years is really not that old. 



a modern hairstyle straight from '68




In this picture, and also below, "le colonne di san lorenzo," my favorite place in Milan. 







5.13.2011

I Love Old...Florence, Italy



I lived in Italy for 5 years, but I really got to know Florence just recently during my Italy-France trip. Walking through the streets of Florence is like going back in time - and when I say old, here in Florence old really means old. The city is considered  the cradle of the Italian Renaissance and it is truly one of the world's most beautiful places. 



As a graphic designer, I was enamored of this "targhe e timbri" shop and his cranky owner who reluctantly posed for a photo. 




























In a not so subtle messages at the cashier: "payment is due up front." and "delivery date is not guaranteed."




While I was in Florence, I watched daily as the shopkeeper opened the store in the morning and closed it in the evening. It was a classic scene that reminded me of my grandfather's store back from when I was a child. 



I love it how, dressed in his everyday suit, he pushes the gate down with his foot and sets off on his bicycle.