Lights On…In Lower Manhattan

By Kelly Rush

It seemed this winter that the supply of new retailers opening in North Battery Park City was endless, but this column will see yet another new crop. The final two (that I know of) are expected to open in time for my next column, and then we’ll say good-bye to this busy little strip for a while.

I’ve been taking pictures of some of the myriad public open spaces in Lower Manhattan and have come across some beautiful reminders that the earth is waking up to spring and showing us its colors. I hope you enjoy them, and as usual, if you see any new retailers or spot changes to a long-time friend, please email me at tre@downtownny.com and I’ll check them out.

Conrad New York Hotel
102 North End Avenue | (212) 945-0100

We’ve seen the construction crews moving in and out of this space for months now, and all that work has finally concluded with the Conrad celebrating its grand opening March 19. The hotel, perched in the center of Restaurant Alley across from the Goldman Sachs building, is like its own little city: It has a restaurant, Atrio, a rooftop bar opening in May called Loopy Doopy (named after the Sol LeWitt mural hanging in the hotel’s atrium), and even a barber shop, Salvatore Barber, (Atrium level, 646-769-4272) which is now open and serving guests and visitors in need of a trim. I walked out to the hotel recently and was impressed with the light that pours in through western-facing windows overlooking the Hudson waterfront. Hotels have a tendency to be dark, and patrons can experience what I call the “casino effect,” whereupon leaving the building, one’s eyes cannot adjust even to the weakest sunlight. Not so here. The artwork complements the architecture, the plush carpet in the lobby is so deep it muffled my clunking footsteps and you just can’t beat the view.

Atrio
Atrium level | (646) 769-4250)

This full-service restaurant, situated just off the lobby, has an extensive menu including breakfast, brunch, lunch dinner and dessert. To start, try an Ahi tuna crudo or a radicchio and endive salad. Main dishes include an orecchiette pasta with Long Island duck sausage, a stone-fired organic chicken and a prime New York strip. Stone-fired pizzas available include a port reduction and smoked scarmorza. For dessert, try the pistachio profiteroles, salted peanut gelato or a chocolate panna cotta with amarena cherries.

For more information on retailers in Lower Manhattan, visit the Alliance for Downtown New York at www.DowntownNY.com. You can check out an interactive map with details on hours, locations and services and search the events calendar. Or, stay connected through the Downtown Alliance iPhone app, available for download on the website.

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