Test-driving the every-day Lamborghini

spyders

It’s 80 degrees in Indian Wells, Calif., which makes sense because it’s 9am in March. This is the desert, of course, where everything is hot. And in a minute, or, actually, 3.2 seconds, things are going to get hotter. We’re standing in the brick driveway of the La Quinta Resort & Club, courtesy of Waldorf Hotels and Resorts, surrounded by attractive hacienda-style buildings and a riot of pink, white and red flowers. But all anyone can see is blue. And yellow. And black. Three 2017 Lamborghini Huracán Spyders and one Coupe, each as jagged and edgy as the nearby Santa Rosa mountains, await drivers.

I am one.

Read complete story on Observer.comA Spyder at Coachella


One of the Biggest Industries in the Country—Construction—Still Has a Big Woman Problem

 

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This is a Getty image.

You know the photograph: 11 construction workers smoking, eating and socializing across a beam hovering some 800 feet over Manhattan. It was 1932. The project was 30 Rockefeller Center (a.k.a., the RCA, GE and Comcast Building). The image illustrates our temerity, fearlessness and creativity, even in the middle of the Depression. Here we see our country and ourselves at our best, through what is undoubtedly a group of immigrants, not one of them a woman.

If that shoot was staged today, eight decades later, one of those workers would likely be a woman. Well, not quite one. Almost one.

According to U.S. Census Bureau data spanning 2011 to 2015, women represent 9.1 percent of the more than 9 million people employed by the construction industry in the U.S. About 2 percent of that 9 million live in New York City, and 8.4 percent of them are women.

Read complete story on CommercialObserver.comOne of the Biggest Industries in the Country—Construction—Still Has a Big Woman Problem


David Rockwell is Taking on NYC’s Restaurants, Theater and Airports

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the new Union Square Cafe

When David Rockwell was 12 he crossed the Hudson River with his family, ate at Schrafft’s, saw Fiddler on the Roof at the Majestic and fell in love with New York City—all in one day. Today, so many of us who share the sentiment have Rockwell himself to thank.

The designer’s handprint is everywhere from The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore in the Bronx to JetBlue’s JFK Terminal 5 marketplace in Queens to Imagination Playground at Betsy Head Park in Brooklyn to FAO Schwarz to Broadway (did you know he won a Tony?) to, most recently, the new Union Square Cafe.

Read complete story on CommercialObserver.comDavid Rockwell is Taking on NYC’s Restaurants, Theater and Airports


A Corpse Flower Grows in the Bronx


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The Corpse Flower at NYBG

The ultimate pop-up happened last week in The Bronx: A giant misshapen phallus bloomed. The spectacle lasted Thursday afternoon to Saturday, and attracted thousands of visitors to the New York Botanical Garden, some seduced by the rarity: The NYBG hasn’t had an erection like this one, growing from 22 inches to more than six feet in 10 days, since 1939.

Some were inspired by the Gilmore Girls trailer: Rory Gilmore searched, and so did they. Most visitors, however, were enticed by the smell. The phallus is part of a titan arum (Amorphophallus titanium), a tropical plant as famous for its gigantism, unpredictability and ephemeral nature as it is for its stench. You probably know it as the corpse flower, so called for its famed malodor, said to mimic that of rotting flesh.

Read complete story at Observer.comThe Big Stink: A Corpse Flower Grows in the Bronx


The Best Part of Pokémon Go Is Not What You Think

PokemonGoTentacool
Across the street from The Plaza.
The launch of Pokémon Go on July 6 was insignificant for me. I have no connection to the creatures or the trading cards. I do not play video games. Hearing of people walking into highways and bodies of water while playing did nothing to incite my interest. Then my brother began playing with our nephews. They’re six and eight. Watching their amazement was exciting. The digital world made real. Within minutes they’d each caught one.
 
Three days later I had an appointment across town, requiring significant walking and a bus. It was time. After downloading the app I quickly appreciated how many Pokémon Go users there are, as no variation of my name was available. I consulted a menu, avoiding the most obvious words. Not available: sunchoke, mackerel, tangerine, tagliatelle. Wow. I settled on bitterlettuces, then created my avatar. I was ready to go. I knew none of the rules.
 
Read complete story at Observer.comThe Best Part of Pokémon Go Is Not What You Think

 


Just Add Bubbles: An Evening of Spritz

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Photo by aaronadlerphotography.com

Summer may have just begun, but Talia Baiocchi and Leslie Pariseau have theperfetto way to prevent its end: Spritz. That’s a bubbly-bitter aperitivo cocktail from Italy, a new book by Baiocchi and Pariseau and a command. Or at least a goal.

“It’s how I want to live every day of my life,” Pariseau told the Observer. “Leave whatever is happening in your life, go sit somewhere and have a conversation, on an island.” Cin cin.

Read complete story at Observer.comJust Add Bubbles: An Evening of Spritz


La Pecora Bianca at 1133 Broadway, NYC

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On the day after Thanksgiving (the second ever) in November 1864 confederate soldiers set fire to the St. James hotel at Broadway and West 26th Street, part of a 21-hotel-wide plot to set the city ablaze. The New York Police Department and Fire Department of New York (and a bad choice of chemical fire-starters) thwarted the plans. The St. James, built in 1859, survived until 1896, when it was demolished.

Two years later it was replaced by the 16-story St. James building (1133 Broadway), designed by architect Bruce Price. According to a Landmarks Preservation Commission report, the new building was popular with architectural firms, including Mr. Price’s, which opened an office there. 

Last August the red brick and terra cotta Beaux Arts building, currently operated by Kew Management, welcomed the Italian restaurant La Pecora Bianca into part of the ground-floor space designed by McKim, Mead & White for the Havana Tobacco Company in 1904. Rizzoli Bookstore and the restaurant Inday occupy the remainder.
 

Read complete story at CommercialObserver.comLa Pecora Bianca at 1133 Broadway


In the (Construction) Zone, NYC

Debris, noise, unpleasant odors, obstacles, lack of water, restricted or no use of elevator, lead and silica particles in incessant dust, life-threatening hazards: this is what construction looks like inside occupied buildings. Residential construction is a current fact of life in New York City, and for some, it’s not a matter of walking by or around, but living through. 

“My neighbor saw the workers fleeing the building,” Upper West Side resident Leslie Pearson told the Observer. “Her gas meter, the prewar, old-fashioned kind, was spinning round and round. So we called Con Edison and they figured out someone had accidentally cut the gas line. But no one knocked on any doors. They just fled.”

Read complete story at Observer.comIn the (Construction) Zone


'Good’ Fat Is Fashionable At These Top NYC Restaurants

You know the type: devouring entire packages of cookies or boxes of cake labeled non-fat. Perhaps your college roommate? Or someone even closer to you. Either way, it’s a new year with new rules. Whole fat is in, everywhere.

From the cream-based parsnip soup at The Gander in the Flatiron to the black pepper cavatelli with whipped lardo and egg yolk at Pearl & Ash in Nolita, to the mutton burger smothered in triple-crème (plus buttermilk-fermented carrots) at Seamstress on the Upper East Side, restaurants all over town are embracing the goodness of full fat.

Julia Child fans, 2016 is your year.

Read complete story at Observer.com‘Good’ Fat Is Fashionable At These Top NYC Restaurants