Along the illustrious shores of the Hudson River, the quaint village of Nyack lies, continually defining its distinctive individuality. Nyack doesn't only imply a wonderful place of residence, but a lifestyle as well. Nyack offers a multicultural community for those who seek a small town environment with a cosmopolitan panache. In addition to a wide array of river front and village homes, townhouses, apartments, boutiques, antique shops, exquisite parks, and galleries, Nyack offers an eclectic palette of pubs, bistros, and candle-lit rarities. The Nyack lifestyle includes sunset strolls along the Hudson, to a refreshing local brew at the Greenwich Village inspired Olive's (A). After your thirst is quenched, casually make way to one of Nyack's critically acclaimed eateries. The Olde Village Inne (B) and O'Donoghue's Tavern (C) offer a collection of homemade Irish favorites; Shepherd's Pie and custom burgers are available until three a.m. for a late night hankering. For a fashion-forward Asian-fusion experience, locals with a taste for contemporary cuisine flock to the avant-garde Wasabi (D) to partake in fresh seafood occasionally ensconced in a martini glass. Off Main Street on Park Street, the authentic Thai House (E) creates colorful plates of rustic Thai food with aromas straight from the heart of Bangkok. Indulge in the sweeter side of life with Matt Hudson of The Hudson House (F) as he demonstrates his meticulous flair of confection on delights such as the warm apple crisp with vanilla ice cream, or his sticky toffee pudding cake with candied ginger and whip cream. Two blocks down the street towards the river, an ice cream parlor called Temptations (G) offers a wide variety of homemade ice cream daily. In the early hours of the morning while most are asleep before daybreak, Ms. Okiee Kim begins preparations for her sensational baked goods, and carefully roasted coffee at The Runcible Spoon (H). Patisserie Didier Dumas (I) is a bakery further up Main Street offering a slew of vibrant and delectable pastries with recipes originating from the South of France. In between indulgent dining experiences, leisure activities include biking trails (J) with breath-taking views of the Hudson, concerts in the park (K), street fairs (L), and a farmers market (M) bearing fresh produce from local neighboring farms. Attracting aficionados from all over the northeast are the many antique shops and boutiques. The original Christopher's (N) and Gene Reed Gallery (O) have gained notoriety over the past decades for bearing some of the finest antiques and oddities in the northeast. The Klay Gallery (P) recently received a nomination as one of the top twenty-four American craft retailers in the country. Theater enthusiasts can enjoy a collection of films and concerts in Riverspace (Q), including saxophonist Sonny Fortune and âWednesday Night at The Moviesâ featuring classic and local independent films, compliments of the Rivertown Film Society. For those in need of a transcendental experience, on South Broadway, The Birchwood Center (R) encourages attendees to reach, breathe, and grow through the sacred practice of yoga and massage.
A short drive South on River Road from Nyack leads to the charming village of Piermont. Eleven miles north of the George Washington Bridge and nestled between the Hudson River, Tallman State Park, and the Clausland Mountains, Piermont is the first settlement in Rockland County. It is rich in history; George Washington met with Lord Carleton in Piermont to discuss details of the British surrender to end the Revolutionary War in 1783. Nearly a century later, fashionable Piermont was the scene of thriving resort hotels and bathing pavilions where many urbanities came from Manhattan for needed rest and relaxation, a parallel to today. Remnants of Piermontâs rich past blend effortlessly with its current village lifestyle. Eighteenth, and Nineteenth Century historic homes, Greek revivals, charismatic Victorians, stone homes, modern homes, new contemporaries, and factories converted to Soho style living are a few of the distinctive residences surrounded by nature preservations and bird sanctuaries. Piermont Landing, a 35-acre peninsula complex of townhouses, low rises, and duplexes directly on the river, is one of the most sought after condominium complexes. Piermont hosts six renowned art galleries, including Piermont Fine Arts Gallery and the Piermont Flywheel Gallery (S), home to abstract pioneer Alan Levine and thought-provoking surrealist Win Zibeon. In addition to the stimulating displays of admirable regional artists, Piermont is home to one of the most celebrated local chefs Peter Xaviar Kelly. Kelly and crew occupy two of Piermont's most classic culinary niches, Freelance Cafe and Wine Bar (T) and Xaviar's (U). Warm inviting ambiance supports Kelly's plates of chic French continental cuisine on a seasonal menu. Kelly is also executive chef and owner of Restaurant X and Bully Boy Bar (V) in Congers, New York, and X20 (W) in Yonkers, New York. Recently, Kelly celebrated his television debut and victory against Bobby Flay on the hit series Iron Chef. New to Piermont is The Sidewalk Bistro (X). Former executive chef of Provence in New York City, Alain Eigenmann, from Alsace, France, marries classic French bistro dining and Eastern France delicacies. Joining forces with Eigenmann is a familiar Piermont face, former Xaviarâs maitre d' Daout Celestin who ultimately defines and promotes the all-inclusive dining experience. Directly on the river sits Cafe Portofino (Y), a pastoral Italian cookery with seemingly the best atmosphere emulating an alcove on the Mediterranean. Owner Jack D'Amico ensures a subdued dining environment with candlelit and lushly clothed tables, and a surreptitious hand crafted bolognese that doesn't last very long on ones plate. Cafe Portofino is also home to sommelier and author Deborah Brenner of Women of the Vine, who endorses the extensive wine list of Portofino, and offers her label as well. D'Amico and company also host the Rockland Scooter Club (Z) uniting the many Vespa and scooter enthusiasts. Wake up to who's been acclaimed for the âbest hot chocolateâ by The Rockland Journal News, the endearing Bunbury's (1) bakes fresh scones, croissants, and muffins daily. After breakfast, head to the expansive biking and walking paths along the Hudson, some of which lead to Tallman State Park (2). The famous Piermont Pier (3), a mile long that spans nearly half of the river, was a fourteen year project enlisting over a thousand laborers in 1820. By the turn of the Twentieth Century, a paper mill was built on the pier making Piermont a proud company town for most of the Twentieth Century. The Flywheel displayed in Flywheel Park located 33 steps from our Piermont office, stands as a memorable reminder of this thriving industry. The pier is currently open to the public as a beautiful walking and fishing spot. Rent a canoe or kayak at Paradise Canoe and Kayak (4), or launch your own, and paddle through the tranquil marshes that in many ways resemble a Rembrandt. Evening concerts are held routinely at The Turning Point (5) where a rotating fleet of music's greats including David Bromberg, members of Mountain, and Tom Rush casually take the stage in an intimate setting. Fine boutiques, trendy clothing stores, spas and salons, and weekly farmer's market add to Piermont's magnetism. Ned Kelly of Ned Kelly And Company (6) gathers and sells the freshest of flowers, garden accents, and well-living products. Butter Cup and Friends (7) is one of the Northeast's oldest toy stores with rare toys of the past and today, located near the new and kid-friendly Piermont Library (8). The current trend in today's fashion attracts people into Paradise Blue (9), to be outfitted in Ernest Sewn. Learn how a pair of jeans can define a generation. Convenient to Piermont's populace or the relaxed visitor, after dining, shopping, kayaking, and indulging in the engaging village life that beckons one to permanently relocate, an hourly bus regularly commutes from Piermont and Nyack to the heart of Manhattan, but of course, you are welcomed to stay.
Written by Damien Burroughs for Baer & McIntosh Real Estate.
Copyright © 2008 Baer & McIntosh. All Rights Reserved.
Damien Burroughs is a noted freelance journalist, incognito socialite, and consummate reviewer of the palate.