Today I sit in the neighborhood of Kips Bay. Just east of the mob scene known as Herald Square, Kips Bay could not differ more. Honestly, when I think of Kips Bay a yawn usually escapes my mouth.
This is a residential neighborhood with few transportation options. The easiest way in and out of Kips Bay is the bus system, and if you’ve ever attempted to take an MTA bus in NYC you know that “easy” isn’t the best word to describe the experience. Personally I prefer walking — which is usually what happens anyway after waiting 10-15 minutes for a bus that never shows up.
The neighborhood’s lack of train transportation may be what allows it to be a relatively peaceful and easygoing part of New York. Of course if the 2nd Avenue subway ever arrives — a work in progress since 1929 that has earned the nickname “The Line That Time Forgot” — then maybe Kips Bay will begin to resemble its neighbors to the west.
The Kips Bay Starbucks on 32nd and 2nd resembles its surroundings in the fact that it has a light crowd. A decent amount of seating lines the long windowed wall, and there is at least one or two free seats at any given moment. The crowd is subdued. Everyone has a book, laptop, or smart phone in front of them. And neither the coffee line or restroom line draws attention.
Unfortunately there is no comfy seating. In fact, it’s wood all around. Whether you’re seating on one of the wooden chairs or the wooden bench that lines the wall. Or you can lean against the wooden barista bar while you admire the large wooden plaque on the wall that speaks to Starbucks’s environmental good doings.
All in all, this Starbucks provides a great environment — it’s just transportation that it’s lacking.
The Seating… Nothing but a long row of tables lining the window. Perfect for bringing a book or work assignment.
The Music… A good, eclectic mix of old-school tunes. They played Patti Labelle’s “Over the Rainbow” and it made my morning.
The Location… It’s not so bad — if you actually like taking the bus — so yeah, it’s pretty bad.
The Restroom… Just the one for both guys and gals. Sharing is caring.
No one should have to wait that long on an iced coffee. Sorry guys!
Drink of Choice:
Venti Iced Coffee w/ Sugar Free Caramel. This used to be my go-to drink before branching out a bit.
Overall Starbucks Rating:
A great location — if you’re up for the journey to get there.