New Yorkers need to relax just as much as the rest of us. In fact, they may need a moment of calm more than most. These seven lesser-known Manhattan locales offer a little peace and quiet to the public at no cost.
1. Greenacre Park, 217 E 51st St
Photo: The All-Nite Images/Flickr
Greenacre Park is a serene urban oasis tucked right in the middle of Midtown East. Nestled between corporate buildings, this quiet park features ample cafe seating and a gorgeous waterfall.
2. Marriott Marquis Hotel, 1535 Broadway
Photo: Brian Pennington/Flickr
This 49-story Times Square Hotel has ample open space and seating in its lounges, restaurants and lobbies. Busy New Yorkers will find impeccable restrooms, comfortable sofas and often free Wi-Fi on floors three to five. If you really want to take in the sights, high-tech glass elevators lead to The View, New York’s only revolving rooftop restaurant and lounge.
3. 91st Street Garden, Riverside Park
Photo: NYC Government Parks
Though not as famous as Central Park, Riverside Park is quite vast. It stretches four miles from 72nd to 158th street along the Hudson River, offering gorgeous river views and landscaping. A paved promenade caps off around 91st street with a beautiful community garden where you can take a seat on one of the many park benches and relax.
4. Shakespeare Garden, Central Park
Photo: Edgar Zuniga Jr./Flickr
Located between 79th and 80th Street on the west side of the park between the Swedish Cottage and Belvedere Castle, Shakespeare Garden is heavily landscaped with flowers and lush plants, making it the perfect place for a quiet stroll or meditation.
5. Turtle Pond, Central Park
Photo: Tyler Karaszewki/Flickr
Near Shakespeare Garden at the base of Belvedere Castle is Turtle Pond: a less-traveled section of Central Park. Perfect for wildlife lovers, it’s named for the many turtles that reside in the pond. Visitors will also enjoy the variety of birds, fish, dragonflies, frogs and other creatures that make their homes there.
6. The Creative Little Garden, 530 East Sixth Street
Photo: Creative Little Garden
Located in the East Village, every garden plot at The Creative Little Garden is maintained by community members and there are no private plots. The community backyard is open daily from 11am to 6pm.
7. New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, 40 Lincoln Center Plaza
Photo: Billie Grace Ward/Flickr
The entire Lincoln Center site is a wondrous retreat within the city. The vast complex houses cultural institutions like the New York City Ballet, the New York Philharmonic and the Metropolitan Opera. Perfectly manicured lawns and beautiful fountains welcome visitors and add a sense of grand luxury. Also within the complex is the Library for the Performing Arts, one of the friendliest libraries in the City. Visitors may browse archival books and sheet music or take a look at one of the many free exhibits available.