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Tag Archives: East Village

NYC Starbucks: 9th & 2nd

31 Jul

9th and 2nd Starbucks

Wow, it’s early.

This may be the earliest I’ve visited a Starbucks for this blog. But there’s something motivating about waking up at sunrise and starting the day with coffee and writing before work. No, I don’t do this often; the real reason I’m up this early is that I have Beyonce tickets tonight and there just isn’t enough hours in the day.

For the last Starbucks in July, I’m paying a visit to the East Village. On 9th and 2nd Avenue, there is a sizable Starbucks, just north of St Marks Place. This Starbucks has what most don’t — an outdoor seating area. No, it’s not fully secluded from passersby like the Starbucks in Yorkville ,but it does have a 3-foot high metal gate separating you from the sidewalk crowd. It even has a large awning that extends from the side of the building.

Inside, this Starbucks has exposed brick pillars and walls that really give it the NYC vibe. There is plenty of seating (especially at the crack of dawn), and it’s spaced enough for it not to get too crowded.

All in all, I’m a sucker for a Starbucks with an outdoor area, but I’d have to come back to see what the crowd is like midday.

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NYC Starbucks: 3rd & 1st

2 Jul

3rd and 1st Starbucks

I can’t say that the East Village is one of my favorite neighborhoods in Manhattan. It’s a little to purposefully grungy for my tastes. But it is growing on my – slightly. The area around St Marks street has a lot of unique restaurants and shops to dive in and out of including Japanese style hotdogs (???) and an ice cream shop named Big Gay Ice Cream (love it!).

Today I’m sitting at the Starbucks on 3rd street and 1st avenue. As I sit here homeless and/or displaced New Yorkers hang out on the benches in front of the cafe while hipsters walk, bike and skateboard by. Earlier a saw one girl training another how to dance with a flaming hula hoop (I just can’t make this stuff up).

The Starbucks itself is small for a corner location. The lounge is L-shaped and contains only a limited amount of seating. There’s a downstairs but that’s just for the Starbucks Partners. It does have a restroom — but unfortunately for the hundreds of people that came in just for that — it was out of order. I will say that the decor is pretty on-point and the Starbucks logo painted directly on the exterior bricks really tie this location to its neighborhood.

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NYC Starbucks: 17th & 1st

6 Jun

17th and 1st

Sometimes  I need to remind myself that when I conceived the idea for this blog, I didn’t imagine a relentless race through the 200+ Starbucks of Manhattan just to say “I did it!”. The reason I am doing this is so that I can explore this daunting and monstrous island through a familiar setting. If I take a train to a Starbucks in an yet-to-be discovered neighborhood, walk directly into the place and leave 30 minutes to an hour later… what did I discover?

The balance between quality and quantity is hard to achieve. Especially since I can feel my time constrained tighter than a 17th century corset (not that I know what one of those feels like). Sure a lot of the Midtown locations are monotonous and tend to repeat, and I’ve probably tromped through every inch of Chelsea by now. But I need to remind myself to slow down and explore when I come to a neighborhood that’s a little off my beaten path. Like today…

I’m in one of the most unique neighborhoods in Manhattan — if you can even call it a neighborhood. I sit at a Starbucks on the border of Stuyvesant Town, aka Stuytown. This neighborhood is actually a giant private housing community that spans from 14th – 20th street on the east side and holds over 8000 apartment units. It’s privacy is debatable though, considering I was free to roam around at my own leisure. Nevertheless — it’s beautiful, and full of large trees and fenced off grass. Just above Stuytown is Peter Cooper Village, which is basically a continuation of the development, consisting of the same architecture and greenery. Taking a few moments to walk through this neighborhood (even as rain threatened overhead) gave me a pinch more of appreciation of the diversity that NYC offers.

And those Stuytown residents are very fortunate to have an excellent Starbucks on the border of their neighborhood. The Starbucks on the corner of 17th and 1st is both spacious and unique. Hanging on one wall (and pictured above) are spring themed drawings from the 2nd grade students at PS 40. I love seeing such a local presence in a huge corporation like Starbucks. Other features include a long comfy bench (polka-dotted, in fact), window seating, a code-access restroom (sorry passers-by), and an expansive wall mural consisting of coffee cups, a guitar, a globe, and other randomness.

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NYC Starbucks: 10th & Hudson

1 Mar

10thandhudson

Welcome to the West Village — where avenues and streets are of no relevance and the stride of the average New Yorker slows down approximately 2 miles per hour.

When I first moved to NYC all of the different “Villages” confused me. West Village — East Village — Greenwich Village — what the hell is the difference?! Now I think I’ve finally straightened it out. Greenwich Village and East Village are two separate neighborhoods — splitting off in the center of Manhattan. The West Village is a smaller neighborhood that encompasses all of Greenwich village west of 7th avenue. And I hope you’re paying attention — there will be a quiz at the end of the year.

I have a sweet spot for this particular West Village Starbucks. One reason for this is because it is the closest location to the Christopher Street Piers — which I frequented over the summer. But mainly because on my first week in NYC I sat down at this location, starred out into the streets of my new home, and wrote postcards to some of my dear friends and family back home. I know: how stereotypical!

The point is that this Starbucks was the perfect location for doing that. Tucked away in the Village, this Starbucks gets much less of a crowd than most. Which is good because it is a small location, and it really couldn’t handle much more. But it has all the necessities and added West Village charm. My favorite feature is the small counter bar that acts as both a seating area and a divider between the barista line and lounge.

A great Starbucks to visit on a Sunday afternoon. And bring a postcard or journal while you’re at it.

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