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DIY Photo Safari #18: Skylight One Hanson, AKA Williamsburgh Bank

Built in 1927 in a modernized (Art Deco), Byzantine and Romanesque style, it is located at 1 Hanson Place, at the corner of Ashland Place, near the intersection of Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues, across from the Atlantic Terminal Mall. The building features a gilded copper dome; carved lions, turtles and birds on the exterior; and a marble banking hall on the ground floor with 63-foot vaulted ceilings, 40-foot windows and elaborate mosaics; and two abandoned public observation decks with signage describing the Battle of Brooklyn. Throughout the restoration and redevelopment of the building in the early 2000s, great care was taken to preserve the architectural prestige. In 2005, Skylight One Hanson was created and the building was converted to luxury loft condominiums.

Not only is this space beautiful to photograph from the outside, it also houses Brooklyn Flea, a fantastic flea market, on Saturdays and Sundays from 9-5pm year-round. Over a hundred vendors line the former teller windows on the ground floor, secret rooms on the upstairs mezzanine, and the original bank vault on the lower level, which also features the food court and a seating area.

Beauty, shopping, food -- what is there not to love about this? Our favorite park of this excursion is the building's location! It is a short distance away from the Brooklyn Bridge and Park (20 minutes via bus, subway, or bicycle, or 30 minutes of walking, to be exact.) See gorgeous views of all of East Manhattan's skyline, the Brooklyn Bridge, the Manhattan Bridge, and the Statue of Liberty among other things. During select summer nights, you may get luck and even catch a film being screened at the park under the bridge!

Check out the beauty of this historic building and Brooklyn! Why not try one of our tours first, such as the NYC Upshot Photo Safari, so you know what to look for on your visit!

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