The Downtown Association
Guest post by Matthew Karl Gale
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In the Wall Street neighborhood of Manhattan is a private oasis known as The Downtown Association. Founded in 1859, this formerly men-only club is situated in the financial district and offers an elegant respite from the hustle and bustle of screaming stocktraders who fill the area from morning until night.
The DTA is still members-only, but is open to the public during special events. It’s a charming building with multiple floors and a variety of spaces, including an elegant bar, walk-in humidor, library, trophy room, and multiple dining rooms.
The bottom floor is particularly charming for the gentleman interested in Old World design. In just under 50 paces you go from individual wooden phone privacy booths, past the amazing coat-check with individual cubbies for hats and canes. Beyond that is a walk-in humidor, a palatial men’s restroom, and finally a hidden gem of a barbershop.
There’s a great scene from the film “The Inside Man,” with Christopher Plummer, that shows the walk from the coat-check through the bathroom and ending at the barbershop.
The DTA is well worth a visit, or even better, a membership. — MATTHEW KARL GALE