I wanted the first Starbucks of February to be a good one — and the Astor Place Starbucks did not disappoint.
Astor Place is probably one of Manhattan’s smallest neighborhoods. Just encompassing two city blocks, the neighborhood was named after John Jacob Astor — the 19th century multi-millionaire. Astor Place is also home to the Alamo — the cube sculpture depicted above — and if you get enough buddies together or have the build of Atlas you can literally spin the cube installation on the spot.
The Starbucks on the corner of Astor Place and Lafayette Street is unique in many ways, but it’s ultimate trump factor lies in its generous size. Not only is the main seating area larger than most, but it also has two very extensive covered patio areas. These are insulated with glass panels and lined with high seating, giving patrons a great spot to sit and people watch the passerbys of NYC.
And did I mention the stage? Yes — this Starbucks literally has a stage. Okay, so at the moment it too is filled with table seating, but it can easily be converting into a small venue for some live music, stand-up, or maybe even some really bad karaoke. In fact — Alanis Morissette performed here back in 2005.
And if Alanis Morissette approves of this Starbucks, who am I to disagree?
The Size… This is by far the largest location I have stumbled upon so far.
The Seating… There are various square, rectangular, and mini tables scattered throughout — not to mention the indoor patio area that is lined with bar and table seating as well.
The Location… When exiting, you could accidentally fall into the 6-train entrance — that’s how close you are.
The WiFi… If you’re sitting on the outskirts, you may just want to enjoy the NYC scenery — because the WiFi out there is horrible.
The Wait… Attracting quite the crowd, this beautiful location isn’t the best for a coffee-run on a busy day.
Outlet Availability… True, there are chairs galore, but outlets are few and far between. Adding some to the indoor patio area would make it much more welcoming.
Speedy and friendly.
Drink of Choice:
Grande Iced-Coffee — I know I promised to have a more exotic sampling of drinks this month, and I will! Just not today, apparently.
Overall Starbucks Rating:
A paradoxical Starbucks. It’s consistently cramped yet I’m always able to find a seat.