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Fort Tryon Park

Location: Riverside Drive to Broadway, West 192nd Street to Dyckman Street, Manhattan

Located at one of the highest points in Manhattan, Fort Tryon Park’s panoramic views of the lower Hudson River and New Jersey Palisades are widely considered to be the city’s most spectacular. This 67-acre park, designed and constructed by Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. – son of the architect of Central Park – was created on land purchased by John D. Rockefeller in 1917. Rockefeller gifted the property to New York City in 1931 and, when Olmsteds’ work was completed in 1935, Fort Tryon Park officially opened to the public. Featuring extensive walking paths and stone terraces, sloping lawns and meadows, towering trees and the distinctly designed Heather Gardens, the park has become a favorite spot for picnics, family gatherings and weddings.

Throughout the first half of the 20th century, Fort Tryon Park thrived, but by the 1980s and into the early 1990s, the park and its gardens had become neglected and overgrown – falling victim to years of accumulated garbage and invasive vegetation. One of the first of New York City’s public parks where Bette Midler began her cleanup and restoration efforts in 1995, NYRP – working with the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation – removed debris, downed trees and uncovered and repaired paths that had been obscured under mounds of trash for many years.

Today, Fort Tryon Park also represents yet another successful outgrowth of NYRP’s initial and core mission to make New York City’s green spaces more accessible. The park’s well-used playgrounds and restored gardens and grounds attract thousands of neighborhood residents and visitors, year round. In addition, a main attraction is The Cloisters museum & gardens, a branch of the Metropolitan Museum devoted to the art and architecture of medieval Europe and housed in several buildings of that period, each purchased and shipped to the United States, where they were reassembled – many any stone by stone – at their present location.

Just a short walk from The Cloisters, Fort Tryon Park is also home to New York Restoration Project’s (NYRP) popular New Leaf Restaurant & Bar, located in a restored, 1930s, stone New York City Parks Department food concession building original to the park. Re-opened to the public by NYRP in 2001 with a first-class bar, cottage-like dining room and outdoor patio perfect for weekend brunch or special occasions – the New Leaf has garnered a reputation for fine dining in a distinctive and romantic setting unique to northern Manhattan. In addition, all net proceeds from the New Leaf support the maintenance and beautification of NYRP’s 55 community gardens and six New York City parks – bringing value to both the neighboring community and the city by stimulating economic growth and job creation.