True confessions – which I declare with pride – I am a total FRIENDS TV show fanatic! Always have been, and even more so when I won a dvd set of seasons 1 – 9 (which was all of it at the time)! Therefore when I planned my trip to New York City, on my list of “MUST SEE” was to visit the address of Monica & Rachel and Chandler & Joey’s apartments – corner of Grove and Bedford Streets, NYC. Even though they had nothing to do with that spot more than it’s address as the show was filmed at Warner Brothers Studios, it felt kind of special to be there.
The next best thing at the time would have been to visit Central Perk and wait on the orange couch while Gunther brought me some coffee. But to some disappointment there was no such cafe in New York. However, I found a few in England and when I visited after my trip to the US, I went to 3: two in Liverpool and one in Chester.
It was like walking into a dream: warm glow, cosy atmosphere (both of which were most welcome as relief from the cool October air), bright orange couch (yay!) and screens all round running episodes of the show.
The menu was simple: sandwiches, cakes, waffles, milkshakes and lots of coffee goodness. There were key-rings, hoodies, mugs and other goodies on sale and on certain evenings they had live music. On the night I visited, there was a young, blond lady singing with her guitar – “Phoebe” basically!
I also joined a Quiz night and did not get everything correct I’m ashamed to say. But it just wonderful to be lounging on a bright orange couch, watching FRIENDS episodes and enjoying a slice of New York style cheesecake.
As the last straw of my obsession, I had a FRIENDS themed birthday celebration, including the most amazing cake I’d ever had! The set up was “lounge-style”, we munched on sandwiches and there was a big screen with episodes playing in the background. All this and the best friends and family a girl could ask for – it was perfect!
To much dismay, I recently read that the Central Perk cafe’s in England had closed down and the properties sold. That’s a bummer but as I remember by visit, I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity to experience the place where FRIENDS meet.