Affinia Shelburne General Manager David McManus
On a beautiful, clear early December day, our most recent Greeter for a Day, David McManus, General Manager of the Affinia Shelburne, met two visitors from Oklahoma as well as Dan Abatelli, one of Big Apple Greeter’s volunteers. Perri Applegate and Jack Phillips definitely got more than they had anticipated when they sent in their Visit Request Form to Big Apple Greeter.
David treated them to a unique experience with a private showing of this beautiful Murray Hill hotel. After seeing the newly refurbished space, the group took in the amazing rooftop views that impressed the visitors and volunteers alike. David explained that “connecting with guests while touring the Murray Hill neighborhood provided a level of customization that is unique to the hospitality industry,” which parallels the Big Apple Greeter philosophy to treat each visitor as if they were a long lost friend.
The group then walked north to Grand Central Terminal and along the way, they all shared knowledge of New York City. Not only did Perri and Jack see the Main Concourse of this landmark building, but also the Whispering Gallery, Transit Museum Annex, and Food Court. Dan also pointed out architectural details such as an original sculpted eagle on the Lexington Avenue façade. The visitors were able to see past the apparent transportation usages of this structure in order to view the space for its true architectural greatness.
Dan explained that what is so wonderful about the Greeter for a Day visits is that it is a reciprocal process; he and David McManus were able to learn from each other while showing their new friends from Oklahoma the sites. And it is truly a treat for native New Yorkers to look more deeply into the history of an area they often visit, while sharing the city they love with new visitors.
Story by Alison Brooks