05/28/14 10:00am

Shooters Island-Staten Island-Abandoned-Newark Bay-Arthur Kill-Parks-NYC-6Shooter’s Island off Staten Island. Image by Hudson Kayaker

With the AMC Show Turn, the country is starting to get a wind of the history of the spy ring during the Revolutionary War. One spot is an abandoned island off of Staten Island, called Shooter’s Island, between Newark Bay and the Kill Van Kull.

43-acre Shooter’s Island is now part of the NYC Parks department but began as a hunting preserve for wild geese during the Colonial era (hence its name). According to the NYC Parks department, “George Washington used the island as a drop-off point for messages, and the place became a haven for spies.”


05/02/14 12:00pm

Pomander Walk on the Upper West Side

Strolling through certain streets or areas of NYC, you might feel suddenly transported to an older time. From an old world fishing village in the Bronx, to back houses transformed into luxury mansions in the West Village, the following areas capture the essence of a different period of NYC. While some, like City Island Fishing Village stand as microcosms, others are literally side-by-side with modern skyscrapers.


02/27/14 1:00pm

The film your uncle will not shut up about every time it is on TV, The Godfather is one of the premier films set in NYC.  Besides being nominated for 11 Academy Awards in 1973 and inspiring many filmmakers since its release, the film is known for helping launch the career of Al Pacino, one of NYC’s greatest living actors. In honor of the Academy Awards celebration this Sunday, we look back to one of the most beloved films of all time, by listing locations in NYC used in Francis Ford Coppola’s mafia classic.

1. The Corleone Family Home

The Godfather-Coreleone Home-NYC-Staten Island-Film Locations-Christopher inoa-UnatppedCities.cnn (1)The Corleone Family Home (Photo by CNN)

The film opens on the wedding of Don Corleone’s only daughter Connie. The wedding brings out gangsters, family members and even policemen, who are outside the ceremony writing down license plate numbers of suspected gangsters. The home on 110 Longfellow Road in Staten Island belonged to the same family for over 50 years. The house, including the lawn where the celebration took place went up for sale in 2010 for $2.9 million. No word on if someone has purchased the house, or if there will be any more fantastic mafia weddings since the story broke in 2010. (more…)

01/29/14 10:00am

New York City is home to numerous world-famous museums but if you need a break from classics like the Metropolitan Museum of Art or the MOMA, do check out some of the City’s smaller, off the beaten path museums. In the previous installment of this series, we rounded up unique house museums in the BronxManhattan and Queens. Today, we look at some gems on Staten Island.

1. Alice Austen House

Alice Austen House Museum Staten IslandSource: Wikicommons by Richard Arthur Norton


01/24/14 1:00pm
One World Trade Center and Battery Park City

One World Trade Center and Battery Park City

Anyone who has taken the free, round-the-clock Staten Island Ferry has been able to sneak some pretty spectacular views of New York Harbor’s big tourist draws: Ellis Island’s Renaissance Revival turrets, Port Elizabeth’s towering cargo cranes, and of course, Ms. Liberty from a flatteringly low angle. But the rest of the city is relatively obscured from the water – not only is access difficult, but the city’s architecturally significant attractions have historically clustered further inland. Until recently, the water’s edge has been the domain of docks, sewage treatment plants and highways.

But like the city itself, New York’s waterfront has been evolving quickly, and in interesting ways. So the American Institute of Architects launched a three-hour architectural boat tour, offering locals and visitors alike a front-row peak at some of the city’s greatest development sagas, past and present. Several days a week, the yacht Manhattan circumnavigates her namesake island, offering close-up views of every borough but (you guessed it) Staten Island.