In Plain Sight

The Prettiest Building In Times Square Has Been Saved

Last year in September, I wrote an open letter to the new owners of the property at 1552 Broadway in Times Square asking a simple request: that they save a Times Square treasure. Nearly 100 years before it became a decrepit, out-of-business TGIF, 1552 Broadway was the showroom for I. Miller shoes, famous for supplying actors and dancers in New ... Read More »

What’s Wrong With These Bronx Townhouses?

One of the worst kept secrets in New York is the phony townhouse at 58 Joralemon Street. Once an actual residence, it now hides a subway ventilator and emergency exit for the subway tunnel running directly below (the blacked-out windows should be your first clue that something odd is going on here). Anyway, last weekend, I was walking back to ... Read More »

There’s Something Wrong With This Staten Island Church

Last weekend, I was scouting some locations on Staten Island, and the last on my list was this church at the southern tip of the island. At first, everything about the 185-foot tall Church of St. Joachim and St. Anne seemed perfectly normal. But as I was taking some angle shots, something started to feel…off. Then, as I walked around ... Read More »

Visiting The Apocalypse (in Queens)

A week ago, I was out taking pictures of Citi Field… …and for some reason, I found myself paying attention to the long line of car repair places across the street. I’ve always been peripherally aware that the neighborhood has a high concentration of autobody shops along the main drags, but it never occurred to me that it might be ... Read More »

The Mystery Ballroom on East 125th Street

For the past week, I’ve been going into Manhattan via the Triboro, and each time I drive down 125th Street, I’ve wondered about the sign on the building at 26 E 125th Street for the Trowel & Square Ballroom. It’s such a great period sign, with red lettering that looks as though it dates to the 1960s. And I like ... Read More »

The 8 Best Fake Storefronts & Phony Building Facades In New York City

Way way back, when I first started Scouting NY, I did a post about a great tailor shop window I saw in Chinatown, writing “I love this sign lettering that is most definitely not nostalgic/ironic.” Of course, I had been completely fooled. Back then, this was actually Milk & Honey, a super hip, semi-secret, invitation-only bar. The phony tailor storefront ... Read More »