Party in (!) the Queensboro Bridge

Manhattan Travel Blog

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Today I visited a Christmas dinner and reception of APG. These events are always famous for the special venues. In the past years I have been in places like: a former bank building, the NYC Library, the New York Yacht Club, and the Central Park Boat House. This year's party was in a place I would never have considered possible: INSIDE the iconic and 103-year-old Queensboro Bridge.

How is this possible? Those who know the Queensboro Bridge know that it is a construction of slender steel beams. No room for people and parties! This is true but one should not forget the approach and pillars of the bridge which are fully constructed in stone. The Manhattan approach starts at Second Avenue and gradually gains height ending at York Avenue where the steel construction starts.

At this point the approach is several stories tall and can accommodate space. This space was initially used for a vegetables and fruits market, later called the Bridge Market. In the 1915s the market was closed and the arcade was eventually used by the NYC Dept. of Transportation and left empty.

The ceilings and interior of the arcades as well as the underpass for First Avenue were designed by the Spanish architect Rafael Guastavino, a contemporary of his famous colleague Antoni Gaudi. Guastavino invented and patented a special tile-arch construction, the Guastavino Tile, which is used in hundreds of famous interiors in New York City. Like the Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station, the (closed) City Hall Subway Station, the Manhattan Municipal Building, etc.

The arcade has now been assigned to a supermarket, at the First Ave end, and at the York Ave side to a restaurant that later shifted focus to a party venue: Guastavino's. And here we had the Christmas reception and dinner. A beautiful location and a memorable event!

More pictures below!

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photo by: Fitnessguru729