Exploring FiDi and uptown

We had a trip planned to FiDi (Financial District) to have lunch with our son, and chose to take the ferry from Brooklyn to Wall Street. It was a glorious day and I enjoyed the short trip immensely.IMG_9014

We had a bit of time to kill so thought we’d do some sightseeing.

We walked along the River Esplanade through The Battery Urban Farm and I was charmed by sculptures such as this one.


There are also installations like this one, which is rather clever. Each of these panels has glass beads inset and as you walk past the effect of the light refracting through them creates beautiful colours. I couldn’t quite capture the flashes, but you can see this example.


The view across the East River was pretty good on such a beautiful day.


Right opposite Archie’s office is a rather famous building and he had no idea!

The building, at 77 Water Street was built in 1970 by the William Kaufman Organization. It is a fairly unexceptional looking office building at first glance, but it has a few differences. The vision was that buildings should be welcoming for workers and visitors. I should also mention that the number 7 was the Kaufmans’ mother’s lucky number, so they always try to buy addresses with the number 7 in them.

The interest starts with this school of fish swimming through pond stones, complete with a little bridge across:


I felt that there should be more fish in the “pond” but I suspect that some might have been, er, borrowed!


This 19th century candy store is incorporated into the lobby and is open for business. It is gorgeous inside with a curved mahogany counter and a soda fountain. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to take photographs inside unless I bought things and I didn’t need any junk food, so no photos.

There is a very cool pay-phone. It’s sort of futuristic and vintage all at the same time! Behind the payphone are some benches with spinning disks mounted on them. We had fun spinning them.


To my chagrin the thing we couldn’t see, and the thing I most wanted to see, was the replica Sopwith Camel plane on the roof! Apparently it is sitting on its own runway complete with runway lights that come on at night. It was assembled on the street and hoisted to the roof by crane. It is there to interest workers in other buildings who look down on the roof. How cool is that?

FiDi has quite a few items of interest. This is a rooftop park for workers to come and have lunch. There is a restaurant and a bar, and a gorgeous view of the East River. We stood and identified various landmarks. IMG_9035

Of course The Bull is there, being famous. As usual it was covered in tourists and I’ve seen it a few times so didn’t bother to go over to it. I did miss the Fierce Girl who has been moved to outside the Stock Exchange. I don’t think it’s quite the same now that she’s not facing down the bull.IMG_9055

There is the odd waterfallIMG_9057

and of course, sewing followers will know of Cynthia Rowley, and perhaps even own one or two of her sewing patterns. She has a couple of shops in New York and I did loiter outside looking through the window.IMG_9061

I’m including this photo of the Brooklyn Bridge with the lavender (mauve? lilac?) coloured FDR drive running through.


This structure was not this colour last time we were in NYC, so I have just googled it. Apparently it’s called “almost purple” and was originally intended to be only one girder but the whole thing has been painted to brighten up the previously dull area, and I have to say it has worked.

After lunch Mark and I made our way uptown and had a very peaceful time sitting by this waterfall. It’s hard to believe that it’s sitting in a little space among all the high rise buildings.

It’s in Greenacre Park and the water makes so much noise that traffic sounds are completely blocked out. The park is privately owned but open to anyone. It comprises three levels, with the 25 foot high waterfall at the end. The central area has mature honey locust trees for shade and there are tables and chairs on each level. The top terrace has a transparent acrylic roof which contains heating elements for winter months. This is a lush, gorgeous haven in the middle of the mayhem that is uptown Manhattan!

I had intended to cover a bit more of Brooklyn, but in the interests of bandwidth and concentration spans, I’ll end now. To quote those famous words though, “I’ll be back”!





8 thoughts on “Exploring FiDi and uptown

  1. Reading your post, one can understand better why people love to live in NYC. This city has it all and you’re a great guide!

    1. Thank you Hélène, It does have it all, and I love to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live here. It’s just too hectic. Perth is the complete opposite – a quiet backwater!

  2. That sounds like a very cool building. I go for work down to the Financial District once in a while, and I always really like it down there (especially compared to the Times Square area where I usually work).

    1. It’s been great Linda. Although it can get humid… I also got as wet as I think I’ve ever been when we walked across the Manhattan Bridge in a heavy downpour!

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