Brooklyn

Featured Story

Brooklyn, City Living, Features, opinion

Is Brooklyn the Shark That Can’t Be Jumped?

By Andrew Cotto, Wed, June 11, 2014

barclays jay z and michael jordan

My wife and I took the kids to the Barclays Center in early 2013, during the Nets’ inaugural season in Brooklyn. There had been a lot of hype, not only about the Nets but also about the new arena. And there had been a lot of flack about both the Nets and the arena, respectively, as well. But after all the back and forth, over many years, both the stadium and the Nets were part of Brooklyn, and while we had been ambivalent observers during the whole imbroglio, we were anxious to check things out once matters were settled.

The arena impressed. Spacious corridors and lots of polished surfaces. Professional and courteous service. We roamed around each level, sampling food and drinks from some of Brooklyn’s finest eateries and breweries. And, of course, a stop at the gift shop was mandatory for the kids to purchase Nets gear which had become the unofficial uniform of Brooklyn’s youth. By the time we sat down in our seats, we were definitely on board with the whole Nets/Barclays thing. The pregame production turned out to be top notch, too: dancers, acrobats, a DJ named TJ, a knight-of-some-sort who shot t-shirts into the crowd, and a super-stylish MC definitely on point, ratcheting the crowd into a pseudo-frenzy (it was only a mid-season game against Atlanta after all). And when the lights dimmed, and the music loomed, it was on for real: through the loud speakers came a familiar voice, smooth and deep, informed by a trademark flow…

“Welcome to Brooklyn, y’all…”

Oh my good-ness! That’s Jay-Z!

“Birthplace of Michael Jordan.”

 
Read more of Andrew’s story here

Brooklyn, Major Developments, Sunset Park

If you renovate, will they come? It’s been less than a year since Jamestown Properties, the developer behind the successful Chelsea Market, acquired a 50% stake in the mostly abandoned industrial warehouse complex in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park known as Industry City.

Along with investment partners Belvedere Capital and Angelo, Gordon & Company, Jamestown plans to translate the success of Chelsea Market on a scale six times the size – 16 buildings encompassing over 6 million square feet formerly known as Bush Terminal. But while Brooklyn is currently the darling of the five boroughs, Sunset Park doesn’t quite have the cache of Chelsea – yet, and the viability of such an enormous undertaking is ten years in the making.

Watch a video interview with the developers this way

City Living, Downtown Brooklyn, People

Downtown Brooklyn's Halal King himself

One of the saddest things I heard in the immediate aftermath of 9/11 was told to me by the wife of an acquaintance. She said, with a smug sense of pride, that her family — in an act of patriotic protest to the recent attacks on America — would be ending their long-standing Thanksgiving tradition of serving assorted meat and vegetable pies from Damascus Bakery on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. It was a heartbreaking statement of staggering stupidity, offensive on so many levels, not the least of which was personal.

I lived next door to Damascus Bakery in my first Brooklyn apartment. This was before Barney’s, Urban Outfitters and Trader Joe’s arrived. It was when that section of Atlantic Avenue was overwhelmingly Arabic, and I frequented the eateries as often as I could, feasting on delicacies from the Middle East, learning some geography and culture and a little Arabic along the way. And, of course, I met many wonderful people, including the family who owned and operated Damascus Bakery.

Read the rest of Andrew’s story here

Featured Story

City Living, Features

The Local Yokel Trap of New York City

By Andrew Cotto, Wed, May 14, 2014

chicken

As a Brooklynite surrounded by progressives, I’m well aware of the need to “think globally and act locally” on a whole lot of matters. This persistent mantra seems particularly true when it comes to commerce, prompting those of us who heed such calls to shop (and generally pay more) at farmer’s markets and mom & pop retailers, especially those in our very own neighborhood. This is how vital local businesses can be sustained in an environment rife with soulless, big chain predators. OK. Fine. So I do my part by forking over ten bucks to a farmer for a bunch of kale and a handful of carrots, though I can’t understand why it costs more to buy the stuff direct from the guy who grew it himself. And then there was the time a Hudson Valley hipster tried to sell me a three pound chicken for $27.

“What was it,” I asked. “Raised on truffles?”

 
Read more of Andrew’s story here

Park Slope, Recent Sales

354 10th Street, Brooklyn

The polished, Italianate rowhouse at 354 10th Street in Park Slope sold for $2.3 million, according to city records filed yesterday evening. The listing was held by Corcoran Group.

Built in 1899, the two-family home has a modest façade with carved window lintels and an intact cornice. One in a row of three similar houses, it’s basement level is brownstone and the upper two stories are brick.

Inside, the refined details continue with decorative picture moldings and original tin ceilings.

rowhouse eye candy this way

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