I’m working a listing in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn NYC for a client who I’ve known from the music and film business for 10+ years give or take, a NYC dance genre music producer legend. The Village People, Klaus Nomi, Crystal Waters, NYC club DJ scene, drag queens, motorcycles, go go boys, the real deal, the works and then some and then some more. Manny’s a lifelong resident of Brooklyn, a real New Yorker, a survivor, an innovator, a risk taker, a true NYC original. www.manparish.com Being his exclusive listing agent is perfect as, in addition to real estate, I’m in the music, film and TV biz and a huge (guilty pleasure alert) disco fanatic since my teen years- I still have an awesome collection of vinyl 12 inchers from the 70s I would never part with.
Like most Manhattan living snots, Bensonhurst wasn’t a destination for me in the 30 years I’ve been in NYC, but I now realize that it has been a big part of my life all along watching TV or going to the movies going back to being a kid in Madison, WI. Like seeing Lenny’s Pizza in the fabulous opening scene of “Saturday Night Fever” – still open for business or watching the opening for the TV hit (also starring John Travolta) of “Welcome Back Kotter”. Or seeing the hood star in “The Bensonhurst Bomber” episode of The Honeymooners from the Classic 39 episodes of that series which is still running on TV around the world. Today, there’s no more graffiti subway cars, no more bell bottoms or men’s platform shoes (never say never) and we live in a very cleaned up, well run NYC City. Somehow and up until now, Bensonhurst remains a sleepy real Brooklyn neighborhood unspoiled by stale corporate coffee shops and GAPs on every corner. It’s still Perfect, it’s still REAL NYC. I love it!
So, who knew Bensonhurst had been calling me for years? Now, 30+ years later since I moved here, NYC is having an incredible renaissance with people actually deciding not to move to the burbs when they procreate but staying here or, better yet, moving to the City from the burbs! The population growing. All the boroughs are on fire, Brooklyn especially.. and Bensonhurst’s will no doubt come back into the spotlight as home prices continue to skyrocket in Long Island City, Williamsburg, Park Slope, Carroll Gardens pushing the 99% ers further out. It’s remarkable to see this happening. So, what’s my advice then? Well, don’t dispair! It’s jewels like Bensonhurst where you can still score a fabulous home with lots of character in a real neighborhood, with locally owned markets, diversity, very real people, a real NYC life. So, OK, like, not for nothin’… take a look at a great place that will get you a whole lot of living for your money that would only score you a lousy one bedroom in Manhattan. Best part, if Manny Parrish’s walls could sing, Madonne! You’d for sure hear a lot of great music! . You gotta check it out!
Travolta famously walking in Bensonhurst