Now that I don't live there anymore, I am slightly excited to reveal precisely where I lived the past three years in New York City. I think for bicycle commuters, it will be interesting to see what a fantastic bike-friendly address I had at The Cherokee. (The first two years in NYC we pretty much had shit apartments- this is the memorable, beautiful, interesting one.)
Here's an excerpt that explains more about the history and the beautiful architecture of the building:
With film, the physical city is often woven into the drama or story line. A century old act of humanitarianism left New York with a historic and architectural landmark that has been used as a modern day film setting. The former Shively Sanitary Tenements on East 77th St., sponsored by Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt in 1911, was built as low cost housing for recovering tuberculosis patients. Every room has floor to ceiling, triple sash windows, leading out to distinctive wrought iron balconies.
Flooded with light and fresh air, which at the time was the only treatment for TB, these apartments couldn’t have been more different from the typical, dark, dank, overcrowded, and airless tenements of that era. The street level entrances are open-air arcades covered by vaulted arches of intricately patterned Guastavino terra-cotta tiles (think the Oyster Bar in Grand Central). All the apartments are reached by spiral staircases from an open courtyard, with a built-in seat on each landing, so that the afflicted could rest on the way up!
This incredibly ornate Beaux-Arts landmark was used as a location for the 2005 Ewan McGregor film, titled STAY, in which he plays a psychiatrist. The architecture of the building is beautifully incorporated into a key scene in which Mr. McGregor’s character descends the dizzying spiral staircase, experiencing a different hallucination on each landing. A stunning metaphor for his own descent into mental illness.
At one point, I found this wonderful photograph of a woman standing on a balcony like ours:
For bike stuff, it was located here at the dot below in this quiet part of the UES with quick access to the East River Path. This is why it was so easy to make little jaunts up to Target in East Harlem. This is also why we took Bonnie, the dog, to Central Park on most sunny Sundays.
Are we sad we left? No. We paid about $1700 per month for less than 400 square feet. Are we glad we did it? Absolutely! It was a very beautiful building. Our unit was tiny and posed many organizational challenges, especially for me, working in fashion and the garment industry. Too many clothes to live here! This building also had a hum-dinger of a bicycle storage room.