Forget huddling indoors during this season of deluge---our Chelsea jaunt keeps you entertained, fed and (relatively) dry.
Thu Apr 30 2009
Photos: Roxana Marroquin
Start: 75 Ninth Ave between 15th and 16th Sts
End: Pier 60 at West and 23rd Sts
Time: 3.5 hours
Distance: 0.87 miles
1 Throw on ye olde mackintosh and a sturdy pair of galoshes and head out to Chelsea Market (75 Ninth Ave between 15th and 16th Sts, chelseamarket.com), former home of the National Biscuit Company, as evidenced by the vintage Uneeda Biscuit items on display just past the security desk. Under this roof, you can consult a sommelier at Chelsea Wine Vault (212-462-4244, chelseawinevault.com) about which bottles best blunt the rainy-day blues (try the Argentine Trapiche pinot noir, $7.99); or warm your soggy soul with a steaming bowl of soup (lobster bisque, Cajun crab corn, etc., each $6.80) from the newly renovated lunch window at The Lobster Place (212-255-5672, lobsterplace.com), where soups and chowders are ladled into hollowed-out sourdough rolls from nearby Amy's Bread (212-462-4338, amysbread.com).
2 Exit the market at Tenth Avenue and scurry across 15th Street to the bermodern Milk Gallery (450 W 15th St between Ninth and Tenth Aves, third floor; 212-645-2797, milkstudios.com), home to Phillips de Pury & Company's exhibition space. Starting April 28, Phillips will showcase works leading up to its "Contemporary Art Part II" auction, including work by Kehinde Wiley, Nick Cave and Dan Colen.
3 Next, scamper to the M11 bus stop, using the High Line tracks to shield you from the elements, and ride five blocks, grandma-style, to 192 Books (192 Tenth Ave between 21st and 22nd Sts; 212-255-4022, 192books.com). Don't let the library-silent vibe intimidate you—the staff is knowledgeable and eager to help. Pricey picks include copies of Conceptual artist Sophie Calle's Did You See Me? ($79).
4 Cross the street into Printed Matter (195 Tenth Ave between 21st and 22nd Sts; 212-925-0325, printedmatter.org), where you can browse roughly 100 limited-edition zines, costing $8 to $30, and created by people like Chris Johanson and Harmony Korine. Smuggle in your Snuggie and you can cozy up in the reading room in back, devouring such hard-to-find art books as Cao Fei's RMB City ($50).
5 Follow the unmarked stone statues on the west side of Tenth Avenue around the corner to the Space Invaders--esque door of Comme des Garons (520 W 22nd St between Tenth and Eleventh Aves, 212-604-9200), including alien—just look up.
6 Now pop over to the expansive Chelsea Art Museum (556 W 22nd St at Eleventh Ave; 212-255-0719, chelseaartmuseum.org), formerly a tree-ornament factory. CAM is currently showing "Concerning the Spiritual Tradition in Russian Art: Selections from the Kolodzei Art Foundation" (through May 7), showcasing works by 35 artists who created religious art in Soviet--era Russia (which was an act of rebellion).
7 Wrap up your rainy-day walk with a friendly game of bowling at 300 New York (Chelsea Piers, Pier 60, at West Side Highway and 23rd St; 212-835-2695, 300newyork.com). Tuesdays you can just show up for all-you-can-bowl ($28 per person; 9pm--1am), but on weekends you might want to call ahead to check for availability (the place fills up by early afternoon, mostly with birthday revelers). Sip an $11.25 mai tai laneside and look forward to sunnier days.
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