Yes Ma'am! That would be it!!
Originally Posted by rosiemac
Fifth Avenue?, thats where all the shops are right?
This is the view from the windows of Bergdorf Goodman on 58th Street looking up 5th Ave... That's Grand Army Plaza down below... and Central Park to the left...
A typical crowded day on the Avenue...
Fifth Avenue - It separates east from west.
In its architectural sum, Fifth Avenue is pretty impressive with such masterpieces as The Empire State and Fred F. French buildings, the New York Public Library, Rockefeller Center, St. Patrick's Cathedral, the University Club, the Metropolitan Club, Cartier's, Saks Fifth Avenue and Bergdorf Goodman and the Sherry-Netherland and Plaza hotels.
But Fifth Avenue is not really about architecture as much as its parades of people, boulevardiers and fashions. The 57th Street intersection is the center of the world and has been for half a century. The agreement in the late 1980's of the owners of the four corner buildings to hang the great electric light snowflake during the winter holidays almost makes up for the suburban buses and Rockefeller Center's Christmas Tree never fails to memorably impress.
Window-shopping was saved by Gucci's leading the foreign invasion of New York in the early 1970's. Although Harry Winston apparently never got the message of Tiffany's great designer, Gene Moore, that creative window displays enhance all values, particularly civic, at least Winston has stayed on the avenue as other retailers even more gaudy - Fortunoff - or ersatz - Bulgari - have opened up new stores.
There are few development sites left on the avenue in midtown. A couple of buildings will continue to get new facades from time to time and reflective glass is still cheaper than richly carved marble or limestone, unfortunately.
Fifth Avenue's most elegant stretch from 49th to 61st Streets remains very imposing, lively and the best the city has to offer. The southern stretch from 32nd to 48th Street never was quite as elegant and over the years has lost a lot of its important retail stores such as B. Altman's, Gorham's, Sloan's, Woolworth and Kress. Meanwhile, other, much newer midtown areas with decidedly different personalities and more pizzazz have emerged such as the new Times Square and the new office precincts along the Avenue of the Americas and Madison, Lexington and Third Avenues. What Fifth Avenue in the 30's and 40's needs is an infusion of youth-oriented retail and restaurants such as has transformed much of the Flatiron Districts and NoHo, but whether the markets are vibrant enough to accommodate such an expansion and pay midtown rents is not clear.
There are still a few blocks left on the avenue that consist of small-lot properties and some of this have retained their charm although the incursion by the Philippine Building, the large mostly blank wall shown at the left, was not a high-water mark of inspired design even if the avenue is the proper place for national showcases. Other blocks have kept a good cluster of older buildings although their integrity has been marred by ambitious retailers. Sometimes, the eye-level retail remake has justified the aesthetic breach because of the importance of the retailer, such as Gucci, or the plain old flamboyance of the store design such as Fortunoff's, shown below, whose four-story high angled, chromy facade at least in the block's tallest building.