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Celebrating Community Anchors Across the Five Boroughs

Celebrating Community Anchors Across the Five Boroughs

Celebrating Community Anchors Across the Five Boroughs

Places connect us to the past, host community and cultural traditions, and keep local environments distinctive. Place Matters was founded in 1998 by City Lore to identify, promote, and protect treasured places in New York City.

The Census Map
Place of the Month

Gem Spa

Gem Spa, a beloved corner store, has long anchored the southwest corner of St. Marks and Second Avenue. It has catered to the Lower East Side’s stalwart Eastern European and Puerto Rican residents, as well as the East Village’s artists, Beatniks, hippies, and punks. Counter culture catalysts including Abbie Hoffman, Allen Ginsberg, Patti Smith, and Ted Berrigan were known to gather at the coffee counter, and tourists from uptown, across the rivers, and around the world flocked to Gems Spa to take in the spectacle and pageantry that defined the infamous intersection.

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Place Matters c/o City Lore
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