19 West Street, New York City, NY | Directions 1000140.760005 -74.027787
Football--and architecture--fans flock here each year. – Sports fans know the Downtown Athletic Club as the body that awards the Heisman Trophy each year to the most outstanding college football player (the award is named for John Heisman, the club's first director), but there are plenty of treats here for architecture buffs, too.
The 30-story Art Deco headquarters was constructed in 1926 by architects Starrett & Van Vleck. The burnished exterior tiles range in warm tones from burnt orange to brown and are in pristine condition, thanks to a salt-glazed finish that still resists harsh city grime. The feel is both Moorish and Mayan (think Frank Lloyd Wright's textile block designs), with corbel arches and a recessed ground floor arcade.
You'll get the best view of the building's cantilevered corners by crossing over the pedestrian bridge on the back side. Though the Club is open only to members and their guests, the ground floor Heisman Shop--featuring autographed collectibles, trophies and apparel--welcomes the public.
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