Posts Tagged ‘neon signs NYC’

This 1930 neon hotel sign still illuminates East 42nd Street

January 3, 2022

Rising 20-plus stories above 42nd Street, the old-school sign for what was once called the Hotel Tudor is a beacon for Tudor City, the apartment complex mini-city of 12 Tudor Revival-style buildings built in the late 1920s.

Like so many vintage neon signs in New York, its future was threatened. “The sign dates from 1930 when the hotel opened, and has a fleeting brush with demolition in 1999,” according to Tudor City Confidential, a blog that covers the complex. Community opposition helped keep it in place.

Today the hotel is officially known as the Westgate New York Grand Central—and the red glow of the sign lights the way along the eastern end of 42nd Street.

The neon glow is gone from a Murray Hill deli sign

November 16, 2020

After 72 years in Murray Hill, including 63 of them at Second Avenue and 34th Street, the Clover Delicatessen has shut its doors for good.

The Clover Deli, RIP

The shutdown was partly due to of Covid, but also because the third generation family members who ran the deli wanted to move on, according to the New York Post.

No more black and white cookies and rugelach from this old-school deli. But what will become of the gorgeous neon sign, which glowed at this corner since 1957?

The sign in better days, exploding with color

It’s off now, but the Post reports that the owners intend to bequeath it to the new tenant. They’re also considering donating it to a sign museum—good news for fans of New York’s disappearing vintage neon store signs.

[Top Photo: Duane Sherwood]

The Oldsmobile sign that once lit up in Brooklyn

November 5, 2018

Oldsmobile has come and gone, but this vertical neon sign on Flatbush Avenue and Avenue D still stands. It seems a little out of place—was this an area of car dealerships in postwar Brooklyn?

That seems to be the case. This corner brick building at 1217-1219 Flatbush Avenue was the home of Gaines Motor Co., an Oldsmobile dealership, as this ad from the Daily News in October 1963 shows.

The dealership lasted at this location into the 1960s. But to my knowledge the sign hasn’t glowed gorgeous neon for years; I’m not even sure the clock works.

The sign is rusted and the green has faded, but it stands as another totem of New York’s past.

[Photo courtesy of D.S.]

What remains of vintage city store signs

April 16, 2012

They’ve mostly been painted over or blocked out of sight by newer, flashier signs. But these artifacts from an older New York refuse to be silenced.

On Broadway and 181st Street is a big corner bodega called Smile Deli. But lurking underneath the green awning is the 1970s-esque 181st Street Food Market sign, with its old-school 7-Up logo.

I have no idea how far back this sign for a Hebrew bookstore goes. It looks like the place, on Ludlow Street, was abandoned, the sign left to deteriorate.

The Hello Deli on West 53rd Street, made famous by David Letterman who tapes his show around the corner, had a previous incarnation as the Preview Sandwich Shop. I love the 1960s typeface.

Above the sign for Bite, at 211 East 14th Street, is the faded lettering for what looks like a locksmith or hardware store. “We make keys names plates and mail boxes” it tells us. But there’s no name or other clue to its history.