Classic Harbor Line Review
62 Chelsea Piers #103
New York, NY 10011
There are dozens of boat tour companies in NYC that offer picturesque views of the city, as well as transport to Liberty, Ellis and Governors Islands. If you just want to see the sights, take the ferry to Red Hook (it’s free and it goes to IKEA, if you happen to need a shower curtain) but if you want to experience the harbor in style, get yourself down to pier 62 at Chelsea Piers and take a trip on the Classic Harbor Line.
We boarded the good ship ‘America 2.0’, a 105ft schooner (that’s a sailboat, to you and me) at 7 pm as the sun began to set across the Hudson river. Imagine the sort of yacht Jay Gatsby would be sailing about on a – modernized version of the original ‘America’ which won the first America’s cup in 1851, the ship is a fascination of winches and rigging with beautiful teak decking and brass rail, all of which look passionately maintained. Not content to be simply a pretty boat, the schooner is designed to be fast and it wasn’t long before we were drifting in the harbor, the Statue of Liberty within pitching distance on one side, and on the other, the southern Manhattan skyline. The views of both are simply breathtaking.
Through their website the 2 hour harbor cruise costs $82 per person but less expensive tickets can be found with little searching (my wife and I found $99 for the two of us through Goldstar). The good news is that the price includes 3 adult beverages from a decent selection of beer, wine and champagne, served by an all female crew; khaki-shorted, outdoorsy looking women that leap from bow and stern on the rigging in between pouring drinks.
This is perfect Valentines day/Anniversary/Birthday fodder – you could even make it a first date if you were so bold, you’d certainly not run short of conversation. There’s an epic feeling to what Classic Harbor Line provides and, though not cheap, the sheer experience of it makes it worth every penny.
Reviewed by: Roddy MacInnes