Busy Bees Banned from Bowery

Swarm of Bees in Tree

In what turned out to be a short-term rental, about 9000 feral bees, weighing about three pounds all together, were removed from a tree by New York Police Department bee specialist Anthony Planakis.

Last Wednesday’s removal was just the latest of several similar removals conducted around the city in the past few months. In the Bronx, on April 30th over 7000 hunter bees were taken from a tree located in front of a bodega in the Melrose neighborhood. Earlier in May another group of thousands of hymenopteras were evicted from their temporary home in Astoria, Queens.

While removing the bees without protective clothing Planakis remarked, “It’s gonna be a very busy season. When it rains, they usually stay away and don’t want to be outside. But when the climate changes, they swarm.”

Planakis explained that it’s the queen of the hive that decides it’s time to move, and the rest just follow her lead. That is what Planakis believes happened on Wednesday in The Bowery.

Several onlookers were impressed with the attention the bees were receiving, not just from the spectators, but also from the police.
One bystander, Lance Anderson commented that, “They don’t even send Emergency Service trucks for most crimes. It’s kinda cool.”

Tour the Newest Bowery Buildings with Architect John Hill

The New Museum of Contemporary Art

Come take a look at some of what’s new on the Bowery. From Spring Street to Astor Place, and many of the side streets along the way, John Hill, architect and blogger, will take you to see many of the Bowery’s newest buildings.

The 92nd Street Y’s Tribeca branch is hosting “The Bowery Changing,” an opportunity to get to know one of New York’s most historical neighborhoods with adjunct professor at the New York Institute of Technology and the author of “Guide to Contemporary New York City Architecture,” John Hill.

The tour is scheduled for July 14, 2012, at 11am and meeting in front of the New Museum at 235 Bowery at Prince Street. The cost to participate is $25.

One Mile House Offers Beer and Great Traditional Pub Cuisine

One Mile House

At number 10 Delancey Street on the Lower East Side a new watering hole whose heart is in the past has opened. The canteen is named “One Mile House,” after a famed 19th century bar located exactly one mile from City Hall; perfectly positioned so that city politicos who needed a little brewsky while on the job could walk on over and whet their whistles while still running the city.

Today’s “One Mile House” is a comfortable meeting place with a generously sized lounge and large, airy windows letting in just the right amount of light during the day, while at night the stop is lit with rounded orbs creating an intimate and warm atmosphere.

The décor does not quite reach back to the 1800s, but does give a nod and wink to the heyday of New York during the ‘roaring twenties’ and “depression thirties,” with antique subway tiles, tin ceilings and newspaper clippings from that era decorating the restrooms.

Along with an always changing beer list which will make the most avid beer aficionado smile is a menu serving classic pub-style food such as burgers, Hot Legs, (a version of buffalo wings), and some twists on pizza. Especially fun is the once-a-month event when breweries come into “One Mile House” and do a “Tap Takeover,” offering samples of their own special concoctions.

Whether you are a politician or just a beer lover, “One Mile House” is worth a visit. 10 Delancey Street // 646-559-0702

Age No Obstacle for Tony Polito, Legendary Tattoo Artist in New York

Tony Polito

At the age of 14 Tony Polito got his first tattoo. That was back in 1959, and it was true love ever since. That same year Polito began working as a tattoo artist himself, mainly serving sailors in such rough neighborhoods as Coney Island and the Bowery, where the majority of tattoo parlors were located.

Just two years later, in 1961, tattooing became an illegal endeavor in New York City due to an outbreak of hepatitis. While most tattoo artist just left town to work in other cities in New York State, Polito stayed behind in the city, working in his basement or other hidden spaces.

“For a couple of years I was the only one in town" he remembers. He had as many as 50 to 80 clients per day. They mostly wanted their tattoos done "fast and cheap."

The ban on tattoo parlors in the city was finally lifted in 1997, and fancy tattoo parlors opened up all over the Village. Today tattooing is gentrified to a certain extent, in contrast to the way Polito, who is still working at age 77, describes the past:

"In the 60s it was rough, you had to know your karate," Tony says.

New Museum Installs 28-Foot Tall Rose on Facade

If you’re walking down the Bowery on Manhattan’s Lower East Side this week, you may notice something different on the facade of the New Museum. A 28-foot tall steel, aluminum and lacquer rose now stands on the museum’s ledge where Ugo Rondinone’s Hell, Yes! rainbow used to be.

German Post-war Contemporary sculptor Isa Genzken created Rose II, her first piece of public art to be installed in the United States. It was installed on Saturday and will remain on view through 2011. (Genzken made her first Rose in 1993.)

Rondinone’s Hell, Yes! was put up on the facade of the New Museum in December 2007 to celebrate the contemporary museum’s first freestanding building on the Bowery.


Best Western Bowery Hanbee Hotel Wins Award

Best Western Bowery Hanbee HotelThe Best Western Bowery Hanbee Hotel, located in downtown New York City, has received the Best Western Chairwoman’s Award, the chain’s highest honor for outstanding quality standards. The Chairwoman’s Award recognizes Best Western International hotels with a cleanliness and maintenance inspection score of 988 points out of a possible 1,000, placing the hotel in the top five percent of all 2,400 Best Western hotels. The hotel also had to meet Best Western’s requirements for design and high customer satisfaction scores in order to qualify.

“Receiving this award is a tremendous honor,” said General Manager Raymond Sun. “The Best Western Bowery Hanbee Hotel is committed to providing quality accommodations and service for our guests. Our staff has worked very hard to achieve this level of excellence and we are delighted to receive this important symbol of distinction from Best Western.”

The Best Western Bowery Hanbee Hotel is located at 231 Grand Street in the heart of downtown New York City. Built in 2008, the hotel is ideally situated between Chinatown and Little Italy in Lower Manhattan, surrounded by some of the most vibrant New York City neighborhoods such as Tribeca, Soho and the Lower East Side. Abundant subway access is a few blocks from the hotel. City Hall, Battery Park, Trinity Church and PACE University are within walking distance. All 102 guestrooms feature a modern, comfortable design with 32-inch flat panel TVs and high-speed Internet access. The 100% non-smoking hotel also offers complimentary continental breakfast, Wi-Fi in the lobby, and a fitness center. The Best Western Bowery Hanbee Hotel is operated by Interstate Hotels & Resorts, the nation’s largest independent hotel management company. For more information about the Best Western Bowery Hanbee Hotel in New York City, visit www.bw-boweryhanbeehotel.com.