Midtown to Downtown
New York Travel Blog› entry 5 of 10 › view all entries
Goals today were to go the the NBC Studios Tour at Rockefeller Center and then go Downtown to Canal Street. The great breakfast served by Embassy Suites really fortifies one for the day! So, after that, we were ready to board the NJT bus for the Port Authority. Transit time through the Lincoln Tunnel after rush hour was quick and we were soon walking along 42nd Street again, now in daylight. Our route took us through Times Square, still full of ads, but not as bright as at night, diverging from Broadway to Seventh Avenue at Duffy Square. The TKTS half-price day-of-sale performance theatre ticket booth is located here. They were not yet open. We had tickets for In the Heights that evening, but were curious to see what shows were available, for future reference.
Crossing over at 50th Street we soon arrived at Rockefeller Center at the side of the GE Building. Built in 1933, the 70 story skyscraper known as "30 Rock" (as in the TV show) is the headquarters of NBC. A such, the canopied side entrace announces the NBC Tour and the NBC Experience store. The entrance to the studio tour is through the NBC Experience store. Clever.
After the tour (see review) and view of the upper floors of 30 Rock, we did want to experience the Experience store. There are souvenier T-shirts, magnets, mugs and more to be had here for all major NBC TV shows: House, The Office, Law and Order, etc. (Nothing for the NBC Symphony concerts under Toscanini, though. ;) ). While Susan, Julia, and Chelsea enjoyed some coffee and tea, I snuck outside to get photos of the Prometheus statue and the Rockefeller Center ice rink.
Time to quit Rockefeller Center and go Downtown. We walked back over to over to Broadway along 52nd street, passing Mars 2112 where I'd eaten in 2004. The 50th Street station was near here, and our conenction to go to Canal Street.
A 1 Train subway took us from 50th Street to Canal Street. Canal Street is a famous bargain-hunter's shopping street in New York. Susan, Julia,and Chelsea all wanted to check out the stores and street vendors to be found here. I was eager to try out some "street" photography, that is, taking candid photos of daily life. (I've always been terribly shy and self-concious about taking photos of people. I'm much more comfortable taking photos of buildings and objects.) We stayed together until reaching the Amsterdam Boutique.
Cell phone buzzing, we all met to find lunch. Susan suggested Lombardi's and its famous pizza at Mott and Spring. We walked there, but the line just to get in the door was huge! So, we backtracked to Grotta Azzurra at Mulberry and Broome and enjoyed their pasta instead. (See review.)
Time to hurry back to the hotel before the show that evening. But not before I noted an interesting building with a dome. It looked like a church. What was it? (I later found it was the Police Building, the former headquarters of NYPD. It has been adapted as condos.) We pressed on. Before long, a 6 Train subway (Lexington Avenue Local) took us from Spring Street to Grand Central and then the Shuttle back to the connection with the Port Authority.
We returned in the evening to see the musical In the Heights at the Richard Rodgers Theatre.