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The Dakota

The muse of filmmakers relatively large (Roman Polanski for Rosemary's Baby) and relatively small (Ivan Reitman for Ghost Busters) and at least one psychopathic Beatle assassin (Mark David Chapman, who shot John Lennon here on December 8, 1980, with The Catcher in the Rye, a Bible for disaffected New York, famously stowed in his back pocket). The building opened in 1884 as one of the city's first luxury apartment buildings, back when the Upper West Side was still largely undeveloped land. Critics...

The muse of filmmakers relatively large (Roman Polanski for Rosemary's Baby) and relatively small (Ivan Reitman for Ghost Busters) and at least one psychopathic Beatle assassin (Mark David Chapman, who shot John Lennon here on December 8, 1980, with The Catcher in the Rye, a Bible for disaffected New York, famously stowed in his back pocket). The building opened in 1884 as one of the city's first luxury apartment buildings, back when the Upper West Side was still largely undeveloped land. Critics of the construction project said the building would be so far out of town that "it might as well be in Dakota Territory," which is how the building got the peculiar name. Designed by Henry Hardenbergh, who also designed the Plaza, the Dakota is an eclectic, perhaps uneven, mélange of architectural styles drawing on sources as distinct and diverse as the German Renaissance and the iconography of the Wild West. Plenty of celebrities have called the building home over the years--Boris Karloff, Judy Garland, Lauren Bacall, Leonard Bernstein, and Kim Bassinger, among others--but John Lennon and Yoko Ono remain a kind of martyred First Couple of the building. Every year, Ono marks the anniversary of his death with a now-public pilgrimage to nearby Strawberry Fields in Central Park.

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Address:
1 West 72nd St.
New York City, NY 10023
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Travelgoaters at The Dakota
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masmith
September 19, 2010
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