Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Terminal
Yeah, it is Grand Central Terminal, not Grand Central Station (although I either call it just “Grand Central” or “Grand Central Station” – but that’s just my favorite little error to make in its name).
Vanderbilt Hall is something I’ve posted about before (here and here), but it’s never been the point of the post (one was on the Christmas shops that are in there and the other mentioned it as part of a larger post). But, I have to admit that I really, really like the hall simply because it spends most of its time completely empty and cavernous. They put up rails to prevent people from wandering in there and standing around, but you can easily duck around them if you really want.
On the other hand, they are also often in the process of putting up a display in there and then letting people go through it, like the Christmas shops. My favorite use of it has always been Tartan Week which has Scottish shops on one side and performances on the other…along with tourist stuff promoting Scotland.
But that really doesn’t explain a heck of a lot. When you first walk into the main entrance of Grand Central off of 42nd Street, you walk down a short vestibule area. You then enter through some more doors. On both sides of you (the left and the right) is Vanderbilt Hall.
You can see they look pretty much the same.
There are a couple of plaques, but the one that catches the eye is this one.
It reads: “In memory and honor of Jacquiline Kennedy Onassis, 1929-1994, In an age when few people sought to preserve the architectural wonders that are a daily reminder of our rich and glorious past, a brave woman rose in protest to save this terminal from demolition. Because of her tireless and valiant efforts, it stands today as a monument to those who came before us and built the greatest city known to mankind. Preserving this great landmark is one of her many enduring legacies. The people of New York are forever grateful. October 1, 1998.”
Actually, Jackie died on 5/19/1994. She didn’t get to see this plaque, but we get to see her legacy.
However, something is going on. I haven’t been there for a few days, but the past few weeks they’ve been doing a lot of renovations or setup. I’ll go back again soon to take another look.