Plunked in the middle of Central Park, rising sphinx-like out of the boulders, sits Belvedere Castle.
Growing up, I always wondered, in my most Seinfeldian, "What's the deal with Belvedere Castle? Why's it there? Why's it called that? Is it even really a castle?"
Well, no, it's not a castle, not really -- it's a place where you can walk up to its big terrace and get great views of the city and park.
In fact, that's why it's called "Belvedere", which is Italian for "beautiful view."
It was built in 1869, back when the city did cool things like big huge parks and structures just to make life more pleasant for its citizens. You know, the public good.
Anyway, the public good is being served somewhat now as Belvedere Castle is being closed until 2019 for structural repairs. So, until then, enjoy the "bella" view from here: