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Location: 3rd Ave & 14th Street
Rooms: Single in a five person suite, doubles in a three bedroom suite, low cost three bedroom suites
Cost: $15,645 for single, $13,438 for double, $11,037 for low cost.
If Coral Towers were a movie, it would be Toy Story. When it came around, it was awesome and new and fresh. Over the years it has been overshadowed by it’s bigger and flashier sequels, and a cursory glance might lead you to think it’s dated. But on further inspection, you’ll find that Coral has a definite charm that is all it’s own, and a certain amount of familiarity that you can’t get from the newer dorms.
1) The Name.
Let’s be honest, who wouldn’t want to live in a place named Coral Towers? It’s got everything right there, the overpowering nature of (erroneously-named) dual towers, the colorful nautical underpinnings of coral, and the subtle sense of authority that comes from capital letters. Upon moving in, you might be disappointed to learn it is a complete misnomer, at seventeen floors it was hardly a tower (much less two), and despite my thorough inspection, I found nary a trace of coral. But the unsubtle misdirect of the name only adds to Coral’s charm.
2) The Charm.
Of all the upperclassmen dorms, Coral feels the least like an actual dorm. This is due mostly the fact that it wasn’t built as a dorm and was in fact rented by NYU for student housing. The style of the rooms may best be described as late 1980’s lower middle-class chic™: off-white wood moldings, vanilla painted walls, cream colored venetian blinds, eggshell linoleum floors and the ever stylish standard issue dormitory furniture. All of this gives the rooms a sense of lived in charm.
3) The Location.
When you live at Coral you’re half a block from Palladium/Trader Joes, a block from U-Hall, two blocks from Union Square, and maybe a fifteen minute walk from campus on a busy day. Savor this time, for it is yours, young scholar.
4) Duane Reade.
The first floor of Coral Towers is 24 hour Duane Reade. This Duane Reade will soon come to be your best friend after a few all-nighters/sexilings/fire-drills/Duane Reade themed orgies. The convenience of this particular Duane Reade does come with a few caveats, namely everything about it: the selection, the pharmacy, the staff, and the surprising lack of people willing to participate in Duane Reade themed orgies. But sometimes you can’t be bothered to walk a few blocks to get pretzels and nutella, fatty.
5) The Food.
The suites in Coral have real, honest to god kitchens with a full sized fridge, a relatively large sink, and a nice oven and stove. If you’re feeling too lazy to cook, you’re in luck. Being in the Union Square area means you are nearby all sorts of cheap delicious foods. So go nuts, fatty.
1) The Elevators.
There are only two of them, there are also 17 floors and 800 people living on them who all want to use the elevator. Oh, and they all have class at the same time. Have fun waiting. The upside is you’ll learn the value of patience. Consider getting a smartphone if you don’t have one already, it’ll make the waits go by faster, and it’s 2011, get with the times. Also, the super likes to co-opt one elevator once a week to haul garbage from each floor, serving the dual purpose of inconveniencing everyone and making the elevators smell like garbage.
2) The Super.
Continuing Coral Towers’ theme of misnomers is the building’s Super, who is anything but. Having never spoken to him, all I know of the Super is what I pieced together from my various encounters with him. As far as I can tell, the Super came to this building from a far off land (Croatia, or perhaps Queens) with the dream of keeping it maintained for all its happy residents. Unfortunately, the soul crushing task of maintaining a building for a group of unappreciative college students led the Super to a life filled with chain smoking and frequent breaks to stare longingly out the window of the lobby. He is a sad figure, and we should pity him, except when he uses the elevator to haul garbage, that’s not cool.
3) The Rooms.
The rooms at Coral are remarkably inconsistent, some are great and massive and will be the envy of all your friends. I had the benefit of living in one such room, which was far larger than I knew what to do with. The room of two of my suitemates was twice as large and had its own bathroom. However, my other suitemates didn’t fare quite as well: their room was somehow smaller than mine. In addition, there was no common area, at all. In other suites you’ll find smaller rooms and massive common spaces, and others still you’ll find a good balance. Picking a room at Coral requires a certain amount of research, and for that reason I list it as a con.
4) The walls.
The walls in Coral are incredibly thin. If you are a creep and enjoy the sounds of your suitemates having sex or talking on the phone, congratulations! If you are the person having sex or talking on the phone, different congratulations, but just be warned that the creep in the other room can hear you clear as day. Do yourself a favor and try to find suitemates with the same music tastes as you, because you’ll soon find that if one room is listening to something, all the rooms are listening to it. On the upside, you can conduct whole conversations through the wall.