Back in October, Berlin-based journalist, Maggie Riepl, came on my Arthur Avenue tour and LOVED it! Here is a link to the article she wrote titled, “WHY THE BRONX IS MUCH BETTER THAN ITS REPUTATION”
The actual article is written in German – so below is the English translation.
It feels fabulous to know that I was able to change the perception of my beloved neighborhood with people nearly 4,000 miles away! Thanks, Maggie for this wonderful opportunity!
The Bronx – because many people think the same of crime, street gangs and gloomy figures. It is the northernmost borough of New York City for many long “the place to go”, offers culinary, artistic and architectural highlights like no one quarter else. A discovery tour of the Bronx.
Criminal, violent, dangerous: a no-go for tourists? Susan Birnbaum loves to dispel such prejudices. “Those days are long gone but,” says the New Yorker, which offers tours for five years by the once infamous Bronx. Some of their customers still want to be picked up in Manhattan. Then she takes them from Grand Central in 25 minutes to Grand Concourse, the main boulevard of the Bronx. “The return trip they dare to be alone.” The former social worker grins. And as if to immediately turn everything upside down, what one has ever heard about this most notorious of the five New York neighborhoods, they will immediately turn into the most beautiful of all Bronx districts: Riverdale .
Pretty detached houses, stately mansions in manicured front gardens – suburban idyll on green hills. In the district of Wave Hill overlooking the Hudson River lived among others John F. Kennedy, who went to high school here. The Bronx was up in the 1950s, a prestigious, residential district. Also, the designer Ralph Lauren and songwriter Carly Simon come from here. Theodore Roosevelt lived here, as Mark Twain. The Bronx was just always better than its reputation. Susan grins again and presents the same another highlight their homeland: the Arthur Avenue.
To the “food court” now come the fine folks from Manhattan. For this Little Italy has long been regarded as more authentic than the equal-known Manhattan. In Robert’s you never get on weekends without reservation a place. Well attended is also its chic Trattoria Zero Otto Nove a few doors down, where you sit, thanks to successful mural as a Mediterranean courtyard.
Emilia’s restaurant owes its reputation above all a tiny scene in “The Godfather”.
Also the small market hall is popular because here still rolling Cuban exiles fat cigars by hand and it is the best baked eggplant with Dave Greco. “The Bronx has always been known for excellent food,” says Susan. Many businesses are family owned for generations as since 1915 up to the ceiling overstuffed deli Teitel Brothers. For the cheese of Casa della Mozzarella , fresh pasta by Borgatti and oysters from Cosenza gourmands come from far away. As well as the crusty bread the traditional bakery Madonia Brothers and Addeo Gennaro & Sons .
However, not only for the Culinary Bronx has become “the place to go”. Many artists, where the rents are too expensive then in Brooklyn only in Manhattan, ended up in the Bronx – as Jeanine Alfieri. The painter and sculptor says “how great energy, how committed the art scene and how helpful people are.” And yet she is pessimistic about the future. “It’s always the same. First come the artists of the district is hip, then explode rents and we artists can no longer pay them. ”
Walter Puryear comes to happiness from a wealthy family. He took over a former nursing home and made a meeting place for artists with exhibitions and numerous events. The Andrew Freedman Complex is one of the most interesting places in the Bronx. As announced, the district is also shows the opening of the Opera House , a stylish boutique hotel, can not complain about demand.
Strange: Only the hip-hop artists who conquered the world from here, one searches in vain. Music clubs can be found better in Harlem , which also has its bad reputation behind and better times ahead. The population of the Bronx is already a colorful multicultural mix of blacks, Latinos, Asians.
Past the famous Yankee Stadium , home of the legendary New York Yankees team, the Art Deco district houses the Concourse and Melrose and 1000 square meters of botanical gardens finally waits another surprise: the dollhouse the Bronx. A bridge leads to the small island Iceland City with pretty pastel colored wooden houses, yacht clubs, lobster restaurants and sandy beaches.
Finally, it is also revealed the secret of why the Bronx is the only one of the five New York neighborhoods, which is used in connection with an article: mid 17th century had settled in the former Farmland wealthy Swedish family Bronck. “We go to see the Broncks” (We visit the Broncks) called it then, and it has remained so.