04/24/15 4:04pm

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The Long Island City hotel boom just echoed again. Today, the Hilton Garden Inn New York Long Island City/Manhattan View opened for business.

Located just north of Queens Plaza at 29-21 41st Avenue, this new property boasts 183 guest rooms, four meeting rooms with about 1,410 square feet of space, and a presidential suite with views of the Midtown Manhattan skyline. According to statistics provided by LIC Partnership, this is the area’s 25th operating hotel and it brings the guest room count to more than 2,500.

Plus, another 25 hotels are planned for the neighborhood.

Photo: Hilton Garden Inn New York Long Island City/Manhattan View

04/24/15 1:00pm

Funny

Three female comedians walk onto a stage…and the joke is on everyone…and thanks to a special discount offer, it only costs $10 to watch this hilarity. On Sunday, the Kupeferberg Center for the Arts will host Funny Girls: TV Boomer Babes Tell All, a kind of panel discussion with stand up and Q&A features as well as plenty of Girl Power. Yael Kohen, the author of We Killed: The Rise of Women in American Comedy, will moderate this unique event with three writers who worked on extremely popular TV shows: Marilyn Suzanne Miller from Saturday Night LiveCarol Leifer from Seinfeld; and  Sybil Adelman from The Mary Tyler Moore Show. These humorists will talk about their creative processes and give plenty of details about what happened behind the scenes during the filming of these programs. Plus, tickets are usually at least $24, but attendees can buy $10 tickets by using the code Primetime.

Details: Funny Girls: TV Boomer Babes Tell All, LeFrak Concert Hall, Queens College, 65-23 Kissena Boulevard, Flushing, April 26, 3 pm, $10 with code Primetime.

Photo: Kupferberg Center for the Arts

04/24/15 12:00pm

21-58-35-street-astoria-co-op-kitchen

This two-bedroom co-op in Astoria has a lot of space, high ceilings, and a lot of light throughout. The building, part of Acropolis Gardens Development, was built in 1923. There isn’t much counter space in the kitchen, but there’s room for a table or a kitchen island.

The N and Q trains are a quick walk down the street, and there are plenty of dining options nearby. There are also multiple grocery store options in the area, and the Bohemian Hall and Beer Garden is a ten minute walk away. The ask is $309,000 with an estimated monthly mortgage of $1,162.43. Click through for more photos.

21-58 35th Street, #5 [Keller Williams Landmark II] GMAP (more…)

04/24/15 9:45am

whitetower

The Orange Hut at Broadway and 54th Street still carries the outlines and contours of its former life as a White Tower hamburger chain restaurant. The last White Tower closed in Toledo, Ohio, in June 2008; the chain originated in 1926. There were about 230 White Towers at the chain’s height in the 1950s.

The restaurants have operated in at least 14 states, including New York, Illinois, Michigan, Connecticut, New Jersey, Virginia, North Carolina, and Florida.

The interior of the Orange Hut still contains some hints of its origins, such as swivel stools adjoining a counter. Here it is in its original incarnation, below. Pretty spiffy looking.

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Photo by DVRBS

In the early 1920s a series of “White” themed fast food restaurants began to pop up all over the country. In addition to White Tower, there was White Castle — still going strong and, in fact, the one at Northern and Bell Boulevards a few miles to the east is in one of the original locations.

There are the White Manna and White Mana hamburger shacks in Jersey City and Hackensack. In the early 2010, hamburgers are bigger then ever with Five Guys and Shake Shacks popping up like weeds all over the metropolitan area.

Also at this intersection can be seen the elevated tracks at Northern Boulevard and Broadway. Commuter and intercity rail connecting NYC and New England has run here ever since the Hell Gate Bridge was constructed in 1916-1917. The supporting columns here were clad with concrete when it was built — but the concrete is now crumbling off.

The trestle is part of one of the most amazing transportation projects ever built: The tunneling of the Hudson River; the construction of the cavernous original Penn Station, bulldozed from 1963-1966; and the aforementioned Hell Gate Bridge, completed in 1916, a relative golden age of railroading in NYC.

The stretch pictured above emerges from the Sunnyside Yards and the tunnel to Penn Station. It joins with the NY Connecting Railroad at 25th Avenue and crosses the bridge across Randalls Island and into the Bronx.

999

Outdoor, nighttime marketplaces are very popular throughout the Asian world, so it only makes sense that one is about to open in Flushing Meadows Corona Park this Saturday. The Queens International Night Market will launch in the New York Hall of Science’s parking lot (above) at 6 pm with special music and dance performances. Vendors will sell a diverse array of culturally authentic street food (arepas, crepes, dumplings), art, and merchandise. This is the grand opening, but the founder, John Wang, plans to operate the bazaar on Saturdays throughout the spring and summer.

Photo: Queens International Night Market

JLD

Choreographer and performer Jessica Lang was described as “a master of visual composition” by Dance Magazine. Her company has been credited with transforming classical ballet into a contemporary genre that emphasizes harmony between movement and music. Lang constantly integrates new technology and sound with innovative lighting, costumes, set design, and video art, such as a cinematic backdrop of roving ink blots. This weekend, the troupe makes its Queens Theatre debut with two Saturday shows and a Sunday matinee.

Details: Jessica Lang Dance, Queens Theatre, 14 United Nations Avenue South, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, April 25 at 2 pm and 8 pm, April 26 at 3 pm, $25-$42.

Photo: Jessica Lang Dance

35-16-82-street-jackson-heights-queens-coop-bedroom

This three-bedroom co-op is situated right in Jackson Heights’ historic district. The five-story Plymouth Apartments was built in 1916, and the apartment is a fourth floor walk-up. There are wood floors throughout, and the kitchen looks very new. You can configure the rooms into two bedrooms with separate dining and living rooms, or as a three-bedroom with a combined dining and living room. All  the rooms get a lot of light, and there are spacious closets in each bedroom.

The 7 train, Q32, Q33, and Q49 buses are all within walking distance. Tons of shops and dining options are in the area, and with an annual donation of $50, you will get a private key to enter the Community Church garden on 82nd Street. The ask is $450,000 with monthly maintenance fees of $571 (which includes heat, water, and property taxes). Click through for more photos.

35-16 82nd Street GMAP (more…)

04/23/15 9:45am

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There’s a house in Astoria where I’ve always wanted to rent a room, so I could write a gothic horror novel while living there. It’s a Second Empire home with a turret and a porch. It’s seen better days — but more about that below.

The house is nearby one of those intersections that can only occur in Queens: 31st and 31st (street and avenue, respectively). These intersections twixt time and space are thoroughly modern, as in 20th century.

That’s 31-70 31st Avenue in the shot above, but back in 1875 when the house was built, 31st avenue was called “Jamaica Avenue.” And in 1919, it was known as “Patterson Avenue.” It’s simple to explain the confusion: In 1875, Astoria had newly consolidated into the municipality of Long Island City, and in 1919 LIC was newly consolidated into the City of Greater New York. In both cases, the streets were renamed to conform to the new and larger street grids.

More after the jump… (more…)