CELEBRATING 30 YEARS AT WAVE HILL
By Liz Neumark
1992 was a big year.
It was the year we moved into our new kitchen on the corner of Spring & Hudson in historic the Printing District; a transition that ushered in a period of growth and excitement for GP. Our ground floor lease was $12/square foot. Our new landlord, Trinity Real Estate, welcomed us and it was the beginning of a decades long and deep relationship.
It was the year my second child was born. Katie arrived 2 days after the start of Spring, after about 2 short hours of labor. A young person in a rush. (She hasn’t slowed down since.)
1992 was the year we signed our first exclusive contract with a cultural institution: Wave Hill, New York’s most beautiful, yet least known, botanical garden.
It was a match made in heaven! We fell in love with all 28 acres of historic houses, gardens, scenic pathways, greenhouses and magnificent trees. When thinking about a garden, one imagines it is most beautiful in peak season, fully in bloom surrounded by lush summer greens. We learned to appreciate the exquisite beauty of all four seasons, each so distinctive and unique.
I brought my kids to Wave Hill countless weekends as it became our NYC backyard. Where else could children run around barefoot in the grass or wander off to explore a secret garden or count the koi in the Aquatic Gardens. (I knew the café food would be delicious!) We built snowmen, learned the names of the first flowers of spring, collected leaves, rain under sprinklers and enjoyed the family art projects.
We have been operating the café and catering events on site for 30 years. My love for the gardens and the Wave Hill mission of sustainability, inclusion and education continues to grow as Wave Hill continues to evolve. Although the pandemic shuttered Wave Hill in March 2020, it was one of the first cultural institutions to reopen that summer, welcoming New Yorkers starved for space and nature to its grounds.
It is hard to believe that 30 years have passed since we received the call “We selected you!”. Wave Hill has set the standards by which we conduct our partnerships; with deep mutual respect, never taking relationships for granted, a shared commitment to continued investment and innovation – and a celebration of mission, life and our city.