I’ve decided to continue my July theme of Starbucks within renowned NYC landmarks. Today my journey takes me to one of the two Starbucks inside of Pennsylvania Station (aka Penn Station).
Although deep within Penn Station near the Long Island Railroad departure tracks, this Starbucks’ closest cross street is 33rd and 8th avenue. Penn Station takes up an entire city block from 31st to 33rd between 7th and 8th avenues; and although it is not as big as Grand Central Terminal — and not nearly as nice to look at — it still burdens quite the crowd (twice that of GCT). In fact — talks have long been in the works about how to redesign, restructure or simply relocate either Penn Station or Madison Square Garden to ease the nightmarish crowds. Although, as far as I know, nothing has been decided on.
Besides, this building is over 100 years old, so it’s got deep roots. Above you can see some black and white photography from the early 1900s that are hanging on the walls of this Starbucks.
Speaking of — after spending the weekend with family in small-town New Jersey (the reason I’m in Penn Station in the first place), it was great to climb up out from the train tracks and lay eyes on that familiar green shrouded siren right here in the station. This Starbucks may not be the easiest to get to for the average New Yorker, but I’ sure it has been a godsend to many a tired traveler.
This is a fully functional Starbucks — with distinct floor tiles, lighting, music and decor. All it’s lacking is a restroom. However, that’s not much of a flaw, since most patrons seem to take their coffee to go. Yet, the wooden benches used for seating certainly aren’t vacant –not when they have built in outlets for power-starved iPhone addicts and WiFi for those waiting on a train.
All in all, if you were to ignore the fast moving crowds with luggage outside the entrance, this would appear to be your average NYC Starbucks.
The Location… In the northwest corner of Penn Station and ideal for a quick pick-me-up for those tired commuters.
The Seating… An L-shaped seating area made up of wooden benches and small tables.
The Crowd… Why wait for a train in Penn Station when you can wait in the WiFi equipped Starbucks.
The Line… Long enough to form a U-shape in front of the barista bar.
Restroom… None in the Starbucks.
Drink of Choice:
Grande Iced Green Tea
Overall Starbucks Rating:
One of the two Starbucks in Pennsylvania Station.