Water. City. Sky.
From the Astoria West roof deck, the silhouette of Manhattan traces a jagged outline of towers and spires across the sky. Starting to the southwest, the iconic Art Deco skyscrapers of Midtown – namely the Empire State and Chrysler buildings – are joined by contemporary additions like One Vanderbilt, given a tapered pinnacle as a nod to its older neighbors.
The majestic Queensboro Bridge cartwheels over Roosevelt Island, which splits the East River in two all the way up to the lighthouse at its northern tip.
Directly across the river, the comparatively lower and older blocks of the Upper East Side mark a shift in materiality from glass to stone and brick, as Manhattan stretches away to the north.
Turning towards Wards and Randall’s Islands, the relatively low-rise residential buildings are starkly contrasted by two imposing pieces of infrastructure: the Robert F Kennedy and Hell Gate bridges, which both span across the East River and beyond. Constructed in close proximity to one another but built in very different styles, these bridges tower over Astoria Park like bookends for the green space and outdoor public pool between.
On the Queens side, the patch of green just south of the building is Socrates Sculpture Park, nestled beside Cove beach where the river dips into the small inlet. The immediate surroundings comprise rows of parallel streets are flanked by a wildly eclectic mix of townhouses, detached homes, small industrial buildings, and landmarked structures – creating an urban palimpsest that unfolds the harder you look.
The spectacle of architecture and scenery is best appreciated as the sun dips behind the skyline and the sky ignites with flared gradients of orange and purple, while the buildings begin to twinkle. From the comfort of a cabana or around a grill with friends at Astoria West’s Rooftop Pool Club, it’s hard to disagree that this is one of the best views in New York City.