If you ever dreamed of sitting on the iconic orange couch that Ross, Monica, Chandler, Phoebe, Rachel and Joey sat on then your dreams are about to come a reality. Now until Oct. 18, a pop-up version of Central Perk is now in lower Manhattan for fans of the show “Friends” to go to. If you are someone who can quote every line or even someone who watches the show here and there, you do not want to miss out on visiting the coffee shop.
However, this is not an actual coffee shop. Rather, it is a sea of people looking at the different memorabilia from the show while drinking the fresh coffee that is handed out for free. The coffeehouse feels more like a museum than a place where you could go and write your english paper.
After looking at the memorabilia, you then get in line to take your picture on the authentic
orange couch. Yes, you will be sitting in the same place that Jennifer Aniston once sat. The pictures are free as well. After, you can stand by a huge flat screen TV and watch highlights from the iconic 90’s show in high definition while drinking coffee and quoting lines with other “Friends” fanatics.
The memorabilia includes costumes, props and other iconic staples from the show. Ross’s leather pants make an appearance, Phoebe’s guitar, the iconic white dog that Chandler and Joey had in their apartment, the Soap Opera Digest issue where Joey was on the cover and the actual Geller Cup-troll doll and all. Pictures from other moments throughout the show’s 10- year-run are also posted around the coffee shop.
Not a lot of TV shows have done these pop-up attractions in the past, but seeing as this is the 20th anniversary of the show, fans of all ages turned out in the masses to see Central Perk in real life. You are going to find yourself channeling your inner Chandler by asking the question, “Could there BE anymore people here?” However, this coffee shop is not located in the West Village underneath the “Friends” apartment, rather, it is located at 199 Lafayette St. in SoHo.
We all know that the gang would never stand in line to get a cup of coffee. In 10 years they never even had to wait for the couch or a table, but in this case everyone is waiting outside for a cup of coffee. Fans need to be prepared to wait well over an hour to get inside. The best time to get there is when they first open because by the early afternoon hours the wait could possibly be up to three hours long.
If you decide to take the trip downtown to see what this place has in store, make sure to bring some friends. Standing in line is never a fun thing, but if you bring people who are just as much of fans as you are then you are in for a great afternoon. Once you are inside you get about 15-20 minutes to hang out until ultimately you are told it’s time to go.
The coffee shop has plenty of merchandise that you can purchase. Once you step back outside, there is another line to get back into the store to get into the gift shop section where coffee mugs, t-shirts, DVDs and countless other items are available for purchase. This line is not long at all, but if you are planning on buying something bring a credit card because they do not accept cash.
While this may seem like a tourist attraction or something that seems cheesy, it is like Disneyland for a true “Friends” fan. Central Perk is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.