Happy Saturday! Thanks for being along with us for one year of the W42ST Daily. On Friday March 13, 2020, in a newsletter entitled “In Isolation”, we introduced the idea…

From tomorrow (Saturday), we will be publishing a daily newsletter each morning. We aim to give you a calm five minutes each day to connect with us (and other members of the W42ST community).  

We promise you a drama-free release from information overload and a connection to other New Yorkers trying not to go stir crazy. We’ll work through this together — you are not alone.

We appreciate you being with us this year. For those of you who have supported us financially during the year, we’ve set up a permanent page for “The W42ST 2020 Club” to recognize your help in keeping us going. Anyone who supports us before the end of March will be added permanently to this list.


The pandemic has made us all do things that we never expected. Just think masks… Yesterday, I sat on the sidewalk of Times Square for an hour! It was worth the discomfort and the grime to have the privilege to record “We Will Be Back” produced by my friend, Holly-Anne Devlin. What a show!

I also got to meet the amazing Jackie Cox in-person for the very first time. She’s told me: “Hell’s Kitchen and Broadway are two halves of a whole — and we’re coming back. This is just the beginning. What an amazing day. My heart is full of joy!”

You can see pictures and a couple of videos of the performances here.


Here’s a look back at last week…

Loeb Boathouse is to return to Central Park this spring — after an announcement in the fall that the restaurant had permanently shuttered. If you don’t fancy lunch or brunch, the rowing boats will be coming back too! Here’s a quick reminder of what summer in New York looks like (Loeb Boathouse line for rowing boats in July 2018).

I listened to This American Life. It featured the story of Derrick Ingram and two friends from the Black Lives Matter protest group, Warriors in the Garden. The central part is about how Derrick is in his Hell’s Kitchen apartment, with NYPD trying to arrest him without a warrant. At one point he calls his dad, whose advice was “call the cops!” Listen here…

When Kathryn and Dino Cusumano took on the gut renovation of a W51st Street brownstone, they knew it would be a big project. Selecting the paint and finding the right painters is always important when creating a home — the couple went one step further and commissioned an artist to record the process. See how Gwyneth Leech preserved the work in oils…

What did we all wish we had this past pandemic summer? A private outdoor space, that’s what. With spring just around the corner and apartments still priced at a lower rate due to COVID, this might be the perfect time to snag an NYC treasure and take your morning coffee al fresco. George curated a list of apartments (from studios to 3-bedrooms) all with private outdoor space, be it a balcony, rooftop, terrace or backyard. Come outside…

The train now arriving at W51st Street is… The Dolly Varden express! We reported on the new cocktail bar last October, when they had a short-lived indoor opening. Now they are getting ready for spring, with an outdoor area in the shape of a railroad carriage. All aboard…

The questions we are asking this week are… what was your favorite table at VNYL? Did you like when it was at W54th (where El Centro is now) or at W51st (where ‘ritas is now)? Did you take a selfie in the Michael Jackson bathroom? What was on the menu that you miss the most? We’re asking you to respin your memories of VNYL — email george@w42st.com. Here’s a selection of those mosaic tabletops to help you jog your mind.

Chef Hooni Kim opened Danji on W52nd Street back in 2010. It was the first Korean restaurant in America to earn a Michelin Star. Hooni had to lay off staff at the start of the pandemic, and then try to launch his first book, My Korea, as New York locked down. He’s been grateful for the support of neighbors in Hell’s Kitchen. Read on…

As advertising and creative agencies like Ogilvy and Mother move on from 11th Avenue, innovation moves in to take their place. Mount Sinai’s Icahn School of Medicine is the latest big name to lease space on the far west Hell’s Kitchen corridor traditionally populated by car dealerships. Read more…

In the city that never sleeps, Gary Hershorn seems like the photographer that never sleeps. He had another early start to photograph the crescent moon rising along 42nd Street this week. Just wow…

The historic Art Deco lobby at the McGraw-Hill building at 330 W42nd Street was demolished this week. Despite petitions, letters and the efforts of elected officials, the owners removed the lobby from the landmarked building. State Senator Brad Hoylman called the NYC Landmark Preservation Commission “feckless”. Read more…

Bailey Sperling and Chana Widawski met in the Buy Nothing Midtown West Facebook group and this week started the Hell’s Kitchen Free Store as a way to extend the giving and waste diversion spirit. Check it out…

Thanks to Nell Snaidas for tagging us in this picture. She said: “The streets of #hellskitchennyc have a message for us all. Sending  and hope to all of you. Hang in there!” Thanks also to Karin Schall for adding her chalk messages to our streets over the past 12 months. Even on those days when we are looking down, you have helped us have hope.


What we’ve been reading

The NYC we knew has gone — so what comes next? (ABC News)

Broadway has been dark before… (NY1)

New leases for NYC apartments doubled last month. (Brick Underground)

What have NYC restaurants learned in the past year? (Grub Street)

How NYC will remember the victims of COVID-19 on the one-year-anniversary of the pandemic. (TimeOut)


Freeze Frame

W42ST Food Writer, Michael Muñoz, cannot wait to “Bring Broadway Back”. “My buddy Justin had this idea to honor Broadway being closed for a full year by putting this fun video together to maybe try and fill a virtual bucket for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.” Enjoy...