When I first moved to New York City, I found Irving Place to be incredibly interesting. It seems to be one of the quietest, most-exclusive stretches of road in the city, despite being only a block away from one of the busiest areas of town. Snugly fit between Gammercy Park on the north and 14th Street on the south, walking down Irving on a Sunday morning will make one feel like they've entered a different era.
Now, why I picked the stretch between 15th and 16th for this post, I will never know. It's easily one of the least enchanting sections of the neighborhood. But I must do what I can!
Perhaps the standout feature of the block is Irving Plaza, which at some point in the past year or two, unbeknownst to me, was picked to revive the old Fillmore (East?) name. The old theater is certainly showing it's age, but that's perhaps the charm. I've seen several great shows there in the past, so I can't complain. What I can complain about is the hideous new marquee which now graces the front. While the previous design wasn't going to win any awards, at least it had character and classic design going for it. This new one looks like something a committee thought was a "great idea". Pity.
The sole food option here is Galaxy Global Eatery. I know nothing about it, but one could probably assume it's expensive (if only because of it's location in the city, and proximity to Irving Plaza). Also categorically alone on the block is the one bank- Flushing Savings Bank.
For a typography junkie like me, the two high points have to be John's Shoe Repair and Marburger Surgical Corp. I don't believe I've ever seen Marbuger open, so it's safe to assume they no longer occupy that corner, but at least the great sign remains. John's Shoe Repair is another example of great, classic signage.
Next time I'm in the area, I will be sure to cover a more interesting segment (either the great Con Ed building to the south, or some of the beautiful cafés and residences to the north).