Posts by cassandramunoz:

Articles By: cassandra munoz

Cassandra is a wide-eyed, undeclared, and excited female from Las Vegas. She can frequently be found walking the streets of New York City, background music included, as well as seated on the steps of any and every building that has them. She tires easily. For her, New York City does not cease to be a marvel to behold.

rocks in your head-5 lost record stores-soho-nyc

We recently brought you a list of 5 record stores in NYC where you can still get vinyl. Though these businesses are alive and flourishing, many other record stores have met a different fate. Vinyl vendors of all sizes struggle to survive; even Virgin Records, the Megastore backed by Sir Richard Branson’s massive business conglomerate,  could not hold out in Times Square. Here are five of those lost records stores that will be sorely missed.


Though they seem to be a dying breed, there are many record stores, both newly opened and long-standing, carving their place in New York City right now. They provide music lovers not only with a place to purchase hidden gems, but with somewhere to gather and discuss music with other enthusiasts. Here’s our list of five awesome records stores in New York City.

1. Casa Amadeo, the Bronx

casa amadeo-functioning record stores-bronx-new york cityImage source: Santos Torres via Flickr

This Latin music store was opened in 1941 in the South Bronx by Victoria Hernández. Her brother Rafael, an acclaimed composer, turned the record store into a gathering place for  musicians. During these time of shifting in the Latin music industry, record store owners were the connection between budding musicians and record labels like Victor and Columbia.  (more…)

Orange is the New Black-Film Location-New York-NYC

Orange is the New Black based on the memoirs of Park Slope resident Piper Kerman, films mostly at Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens, just one floor above the Sesame Street set. The creation of the prison set as explained in this video are meant to shape the world of Litchfield, but the show also focuses on life outside of the prison, both in real time and in flashbacks. These are a few of the interesting locations they have put to use.


Yesterday we rounded up Boardwalk Empire‘s filming locations in Brooklyn, where much of the series has been filmed. Today we’re showing you some of the places in Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island that served as the backdrop for the show’s action.

John’s of 12th Street in Manhattan

john's-film locations-boardwalk empire-east village-nycAn episode of the Sopranos was also shot here according to Off the Grid. Image source: EV Grieve

According to the New York Post, this East Village restaurant was Joe the Boss and Lucky’s meeting place in the 7th episode of the current season. It was also turned into Whiting’s Pharmacy for a day this June. Aside from serving as the set of Boardwalk Empire, John’s of 12th Street is a popular Italian Restaurant. It converted its top floors into a speakeasy during Prohibition, serving alcohol in espresso cups. Patrons are said to have included some of the characters depicted on Boardwalk Empire. In fact, the restaurant attracted a lot of mob types. Perhaps it was the appeal of the original tile floors (which remain intact today) or the immense wax candelabra at the back of the restaurant.  (more…)

For a show based in Atlantic City, Boardwalk Empire sure spends a lot of time in New York City. This might be due to the prevalence of mob life on the show, or perhaps the 15% tax breaks offered by the state. Whatever the reason may be,  we at Untapped Cities were glad to make this list of some of our favorite locations in Brooklyn, where much of the series was filmed. See also our piece on Boardwalk Empire‘s film locations in Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island!


film locations -boardwalk empire-greenpoint-brooklynThe Empire State Building sometimes gets in the shot and must be digitally erased. Image source: Bryn Alexandra

The boardwalk featured in the show is actually an enormous set constructed on an empty lot in Greenpoint, Brooklyn that has been the backdrop for everything from daily greetings to explosions. It is modeled after the 1920s version of the boardwalk in Atlantic City. Every single storefront (including the Ritz-Carlton Hotel) has been recreated and there is a large blue CGI screen covering one side of the parking lot that is used to simulate the ocean. Initially placed here because of the greater tax breaks offered in the state of New York, the set on the corner of Commercial and Clay Streets has been abandoned for this season. According to Greenpointers, the lot will be turned into a condominium complex in the coming years.

The actual boardwalk in Atlantic City was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy last year.  (more…)

Stik-Street Art-Alphabet City-NYC

A veteran of the street art scene in London, Stik leaves androgynous “stik people” wherever he visits. His work strives to capture the importance of body language in human interaction, with large success. Not long ago, he left this mural called “Liberty” in the the East Village, on the corner of E 9th Street and Avenue A. “This deceptively simple stick figure raises one arm in a plaintive gesture of solidarity to the artists, activists and outsiders who have occupied Tompkins Square over the years,” according to Dorian Gray Gallery, which commissioned the work. The gallery will hold a reception for Stik’s Liberty Project on December 12. (more…)