New York, New York – The Big Apple. Everyone knows the well-known facts, but, where did the term ‘Big Apple’ come from…..well; this is just one of a few ‘little-known’ facts that, for me, make this truly amazing city even more unique! The term, Big Apple, was first popularised by a newspaper editor, John Fitzgerald, who titled his column: Around the Big Apple. He first heard the term, the 'Big Apple', being thrown around by stable boys, which they used to describe New York City as place of monetary abundance and opportunity.
New York, also referred to as the "city that never sleeps." One reason for this nickname is because the city never shuts down. There are activities and venues open at all hours of the day and night. The other reason for the nickname is because the subway system never shuts down except for maintenance. Even then, only part of it is shut down at a time. Even Washington D.C.'s subway system shuts down around the hours of 2am to 5am.
In addition to the current sophistication of the subway system, most people are not aware that the city has many abandoned and hidden subway stations. Beneath City Hall is one of the hidden subway stations. It has been inactive since 1946. Despite being abandoned, the station is an architectural wonder. It boasts high ceilings, skylights, and antique tiling. In-fact, during Pope Benedict XVI’s recent New York visit, it was widely reported that the Pope travelled by “Pope-mobile” through the city, greeting spectators and press. These reports were, of course, completely false. Since soon after the New York subway’s creation, visiting heads of state, high profile celebrities and religious leaders have travelled in special armoured subway cars.
So while one of the Pope’s many look-alikes rode above ground in a sham motorcade on the East Side of Manhattan, the real Benedict XVI was speeding along a downtown IRT express track — on one of his annual trips to withdraw gold from Federal Reserve vaults and to deliver stock market closing averages for the coming year.
The Lower Manhattan Federal Reserve Bank holds over $2 trillion of the world's assets, according to the Federal Reserve website. A substantial portion of these assets are in gold bullion. Six stories or 80 feet below the streets around the bank is the world's largest storage of gold bullion. The bank's vault holds approximately 37 percent of the world's gold, according to the Bundesbank. As of 2012, there are 530,000 gold bars located in the vaults, according to New York Fed. Bundesbank, the Federal Bank of Germany, owns most of the gold stored below the Federal Reserve Bank building. The Federal Reserve Bank actually owns none of the gold it stores. The streets are paved with someone else’s gold!
Holidays in New York can be enjoyed by visiting all five distinct boroughs. Each of the boroughs is separated by a major waterway. The five boroughs are Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, and Staten Island. Manhattan is what most people think of when they think of New York City. In reality, this is just one portion of New York City. It is where Times Square, Central Park, and most of the major entertainment and shows occur. To be situated here, would be the most convenient for tourists. Some properties that come highly recommended are ‘The Waldorf Astoria’ or the ‘Marriott Marquis’. If you are looking to go on a budget, then perhaps the ‘Broadway Plaza’ or the ‘Skyline’, both very close to all of the main sites of interest, yet not compromising in standard.