Thursday, 6 July 2017

Gorgeous Garden at Wave Hill

Paths lead to several gardens and villas on the property
My July 4 afternoon was spent at Wave Hill, an idyllic estate that's not too difficult to get to and the effort made to get there is more than handsomely rewarded.

There are various lilies grown in the gardens like these
We took the 1 train all the way to 242nd Street station (the terminus) and after we exited the train, headed to the nearby Burger King, where a white van with the words "Wave Hill" on it, picked us up and a short five-minute ride later we had arrived.

Wave Hill was originally a country home in 1843 and in 1903, it was purchased by George W. Perkins, a partner of J.P. Morgan. He added it to his collection of properties in the area, which included the next door villa that is now called Glyndor Gallery.

In 1960 the Perkins-Freeman family deeded Wave Hill to the City of New York, and it was later formed into a public garden that is now one of 33 New York City-owned cultural institutions.

A greenhouse houses many succulents and cacti
Once you arrive, you can see a vast expanse of grass, several different gardens, a green house and a magnificent view of the Hudson River with New Jersey on the other side.

We enjoyed wandering around and admiring the various flora, particularly the lilies of various colours, and small pools with lily pads (just the Japanese koi were missing). There were green houses filled with cacti and succulents, another with bonsai trees, and hanging plants.

The grassy area was so perfect for a picnic spot -- but that's what you can't do at Wave Hill -- unless you bring food and eat it at a designated picnic table that's no where near the nice view of the Hudson River.

Very pretty man-made pond that's missing some carp
You also can't have birthday parties there, smoke or play games and do things like rollerblade, throw frisbees or ride a scooter. While we've heard people hold weddings here, but then visitors would also be inadvertently walking in on your ceremony...

Nevertheless, the cafe on the property serves some pretty decent food like salads, gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, smashed avocado on toast, and some delicious cherry pie.

One of the villas, the aforementioned Glyndor Gallery is a nice space for exhibitions of local artists, though we had a better appreciation for the home with its ornate interior design including fireplaces and cornices.

The prettiest avocado on toast
The almost three-hour visit was memorable and pleasant  -- and we all managed to get back in the van that took another route to get us back to the subway station.

Wave Hill
675 West 252nd Street
Bronx, NY
(718) 549 3200

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