15 Old, Opulent New York Clubs That Still Exist Today

Photographed by Laura Itzkowitz.
These days, with Facebook and Instagram keeping us readily connected, it’s easy to forgo face-to-face interaction in favor of sending a quick email. That was not, of course, always the case.

In the 19th and 20th centuries, New Yorkers built opulent private clubs to provide a place for like-minded individuals to meet, network, and exchange ideas. They were exclusive, interest-oriented locales where members of society could escape the madness of the city (even if it was just for the afternoon) and dive head-first into their hobbies and passions.

And, while the idea of a social club may be a bit passé for modern-day New York, many of these architectural treasures still stand tall on the streets — with some still fully functioning as they did way back when. Wonder what goes on in that grand structure you pass every day on your morning commute? Ahead, you'll get an inside look at 15 of these incredible Old New York staples, and see why they're still so important to the city we live in today.