For those who like their elegance in New York tempered with a dose of high-tech, the New York Public Library’s main building at 42nd Street has just expanded its wi-fi access.
Most recently used for special occasions, the Beaux-Arts Edna Barnes Salomon Room has been designated a room for both reading and wireless internet. It’s located on the third floor of the Stephen A. Schwartzman Building.
Seating (and free wi-fi) will be available for 128 users; starting July 28, laptops will be available for loan.
But don’t expect Formica and plastic chairs: new furniture in the 4,500 square-foot room features 16 custom-made black walnut tables and leather chairs that match the floors’ dark maple. New lighting fixtures have also been added. Although a spokesperson says the internet service is “fast,” you’ll need to stay in the reading room–and check it out for yourself.
Fun fact: The room was originally designed as a 19th-century picture gallery; it was restored and given its current name in 1986 to honor the 75th anniversary of the opening of the library at Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street.
And who, you may ask, was Ms. Salomon? She was the wife of a former NYPL Chairman of the Board, whose leadership helped the library after economic difficulties in the 1970s. Perhaps the Salomon name will do so again.
If not, it’s still a nice place to browse the web or read a book. 212 930-0800
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