NEW YORK - The waves, the skyline, and the sunset with the Statue of Liberty off in the distance all come together at the Hudson River Park's Gansevoort Peninsula, Manhattan’s first public beachfront.
"This place reminds me why New Yorkers are so exceptional," Governor Kathy Hochul expressed at Monday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony.
A dream 25 years in the making, the project transformed the grounds of what used to be a large active sanitation facility into a brand-new treasure for New Yorkers of all ages to enjoy, albeit without jumping into the water.
After the official ribbon cutting, families wasted no time taking in the sun and the sand without a long ride away from Manhattan.
"We’ve been watching it being built. He loves watching construction so it's great for that. Now it's great for this too," said Lizzy Lane, a Manhattan mom of two.
"This is lovely. We don’t live too far from here so it’s so nice that we have this little nice place to enjoy," added another mom.
While some have been anticipating their first day at the beach, for others, it was a surprise oasis.
"I didn’t even know about it. We were just walking and were like okay a beach? Let’s do it," said another beachgoer.
There's lots of sand for sunbathing, but visitors can’t take a dip to cool off. The water is currently off-limits to swimming.