Places that Matter

Claremont Riding Academy (former)

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Virginia Parkhouse
Virginia Parkhouse
Virginia Parkhouse
One of the city's oldest stables, now closed
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Place Matters Profile

The owner of Claremont Riding Academy closed the business on April 30, 2007, telling the New York Times that the cause included rising costs as well as a decreasing numbers of riders, caused in part by the difficulty of using bridle paths in Central Park that are crowded with other uses.

Founded in 1892, the Claremont Stables was the oldest continually operating stable in Manhattan. Its history is intimately linked to the changing role of horses and riding in New York City, and it provides an important link to the city's equestrian past.

Overview

Originally, Claremont was one of a concentration of stables on west 89th Street, located (together with some of the neighborhood's light industry) at an odor-diffusing distance from most residences. Over the years many of the street's stables were gradually converted to garages as cars eliminated horse traffic. Still housed in its original 1892 Romanesque Revival building, the Claremont Stables is now known as the Claremont Riding Academy. As of 2004, it is one of only eight stables remaining in Manhattan, and is the only one that is open to the public. It is both a designated New York City landmark and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The History of Claremont Stables

The Claremont Stables' first owner was Edward W. Bedell, who commissioned architect Frank Rooke to design a public commercial stable covering three 25" x 100" lots on west 89th Street. At the time, the Upper West Side, still in its early years of being developed for housing, had one of the city's high concentrations of stables. In 1902, there were roughly 117 stables between 64th and 97th Streets, Central Park West and the Hudson River. West 89th Street alone had seven.