Rushing away from an uptown meeting this morning, I took the time to stop for a coffee in Paley Park, a sublime, calming oasis in the middle of Manhattan since 1967.
Located on 53 Street, between 5th Avenue and Madison, Paley Park is the brainchild of William Paley, former Chairman of CBS. One is drawn into the pocket park by a wall of water, which provides not only a dramatic focal point from the street, but a source of white noise in Manhattan.
When I first moved to New York and worked at Saks Fifth Avenue three blocks away, I came to Paley Park often, just for a mediatation moment or perhaps one of Paley’s handpicked hot dogs. He called them franks.
One can be alone in Paley Park, even though it’s a heavily used place. There’s adequate shade in the summer from the trees, though they allow a beautiful dappled light to pass through their leaves.