The Bronx is Blooming


Just got back from a visit from “the old country,” New York City, to visit family and friends. And I can’t stop raving about The Bronx.

We just returned from a place blooming with lilies and hyacinth, filled with beautiful views of the Palisades, the Hudson River and gracious stately homes and gardens.

I’m talking about the Bronx here. Da Bronx. Really!

As a fifth-generation native New Yorker, a lot of my family has roots in the Bronx. My father and grandfathers were born there as well as my father-in-law. But, at the height of the urban blight of the 1970s and 1980s, it was not exactly somewhere we went exploring when I was growing up outside of a trip to the Bronx Zoo.

When most think of the Bronx, they conjure images like urban blight.  A crumbling school in the south Bronx that caught fire shortly before game 2 of the 1977 World Series inspired the book “The Bronx is Burning ” by Jonathan Mahler

Or, perhaps they think of the massive, impersonal apartment complexes they sluggishly traverse the Cross Bronx Expressway on their way to the Long Island Sound or the George Washington Bridge :

But on my last visit, my family and I got to visit the Bronx’s best-kept secrets: The Cloisters Museum and Wave Hill.

The Cloisters, right on the Manhattan-Bronx border, is a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art that specializes in European Medieval Art. It is set in a castle-like building jutting over the Hudson River set on four acres of parkland. If you have the time on your next visit and already paid admission to the main branch of the Met on Fifth Avenue, you can treat yourself to this as well:

View of George Washington Bridge from Fort Tryon Park

Wave Hill Public Garden and Cultural Center

Further up the road, and I’m talking a country road that makes one feel as if they are in the middle of the countryside and not just 10 miles from Midtown Manhattan, is Wave Hill. Surrounded by 19th Century mansions,

Wave Hill is a semi-private park that consists of gardens and mansions once leased by the Roosevelts and Mark Twain. In the 1960’s, the Perkins-Freeman family, founding partners of J.P. Morgan, donated the land to New York City, allowing the rest of us New Yorkers, for a small admission fee, to afford views like this:

So, next time you find yourself in New York City, do yourself a favor and visit upper Manhattan and The Bronx. You might find a unicorn:

Or even a fair Bronx princess:

Tags: , , ,

About stacylynngittleman

I have been a public relations professional and reporter -- and always thought I would live in the New York Metro area - before my husband took a job in Rochester, New York. Most in Metro New York can't find Rochester on a map,and neither could I before we moved. I am now a columnist and a freelance writer for Rochester's only daily newspaper, the Democrat & Chronicle. I also am passionate about gardening, fitness and most of all, Jewish education and Israel Advocacy. Here's my perspective on Western New York living - the good, the bad, and the snowy.

4 responses to “The Bronx is Blooming”

  1. Rebecca says :

    Just one question Scoop – regarding the photo of the lovely Bronx Princess above – does that mean that I am a Queen? So glad that we had such a lovely visit – here’s hoping we can make it up to Rochester before unicorns are romping again across the plains of the Cloister grounds! XOXOX to all!

    • transplantednorth says :

      well since you were always fascinated by British Royalty, I would say, of course you are queen of your castle! Would love to show you around Rochester, where hopefully it will be a lot cooler this summer!

  2. Nicole Brait says :

    The Cloisters and Wave Hill are both so wonderful. I’m glad you got to visit both

    • transplantednorth says :

      I’ve wanted to go for years.It’s really like another world up there, you would never imagine you were minutes away from midtown. Thanks for commenting, and hope you are having a successful gardening season.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: