The Dakota Building

The Dakota Building and Strawberry Fields Memorial

The Dakota Building & Strawberry Fields Memorial

Eventually, you will hear from a pedicab guide saying the oldest building in the UWS, a true quintessential residential with an eclectic architecture mix of a German Renaissance, Chateauesque and Gothic Revival, the Dakota is beautiful inside out.

Visiting The Dakota and John Lennon’s Memorial Strawberry Fields Photo: NYCpedicabs Instagram Image Source: Feelnumb

John Lennon from The Beatles lived in here from 1973 to 1980, the building has mythical greek decors, mesonic symbolism and enigmatic figures, and even stories of paranormal activities, and ghost sightings that had been loom the building and as a setting for horror and triller movies like Rosemary’s baby, The Killing of John Lennon (2006),  Chapter 27 (2007), Vanilla Sky just name a few, and the more horrific the murder of John Lennon in their main entrance, and since them rumor of John’s  spirit still haunts the building, the gosh is just reluctant to leave his wife’s side, Yoko.

Yoko Ono and John Lennon moved in to The Dakota in 1973. On 8th December 1980, Lennon was shot by Mark David Chapman in the archway of the building, Chapman was denied a parole on in Sept. 2020 for 11th time and he commented in response saying that “He sought glory and deserved the death penalty for a ‘despicable’ act.”


John Lennon and Yoko Ono outside of the Dakota. Photo: Getty Images

Notable residents: Author Harlan Coben, Jack Palance, Lillian Gish, Boris Karloff, Connie Chung, Judy Garland, Lauren Bacall and Roberta Flack.
Notable celebrities who have been rejected: Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas, Cher, Billy Joel, Madonna, Carly Simon, Alex Rodriguez, Judd Apatow, and Tea Leoni.

There is not an exactly date of when the construction started, but is estimated between October 25, 1880 and completed on October 27, 1884. Design by Henry J. Hardenberg. (Same firm that designed the Plaza Hotel on Central Park South and 59th St) The Dakota was designated a New York City Landmark in 1969 and was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1976.

The Dakota as seen from Central Park in 1894. Photo: Museum of the City of New York/Byron Collection/Getty Images

How the name come to exist, according to popular culture is called The Dakota because back in the 1880’s the lower Manhattan was the most densely populated than the rest of the city and heading North and West "It was quite a trip!," people joked saying that… It was so far like going to Dakota Territory’s, far to be reach by foot even carriages, keep in mind there were no mass transport yet, since the first NYC subway started to run in 1904 and the cars in the early 1900.

Greek Mythology Ornamentations in New York can be found lining the iron fence surrounding the Dakota photos NYC pedicabs Tours

The Dakota was intended initially as a place of comfort, a place to rest to be out from “Hells kitchen,” to be out of the routine, its was an upscale retreat for a few and no surprise that only affluent families choose to live like in it, Edward Clark cofounder of the Singer Sewing Machine Co. As an owner also intended to lived, but died short before the building completion.

Face of the Dakota Indian in the square # 1881photos NYC Rickshaw Tours

Decoding The Dakota Building “1881” Located at 72nd Street and Central Park West, dubbed for years as the “most famous apartment building in New York City,” the Dakota building has a “Dakota Indian” figure in square box in the top of the main entrance  and the word DAKOTA literally means ”friend" or "allies" in their dialect and the Number 1881 is no related to the year of the building creation, neither the completion.

1+8+8+8+1=18 1+8=9

The number around the Dakota head, added





The Number 9 in numerology is the number of Universal love, eternity, faith, Universal Spiritual Laws, the concept of karma, spiritual enlightenment, spiritual awakening.

A masonic symbol?  

On the other hand 1881 is an Angel’s number

Angel Number 1881 is a sign from the divine realm that you should keep your intention positive and clear. Your goals in life should focus on making your life and the lives of the people around you better. ... This number urges you to embrace change in your life and focus on the new beginnings that are coming your way.

Now…   Let Me Take You Down to Strawberry Fields From “Strawberry Fields Forever” The Beatles

Strawberry Fields Memorial - October 09, 1985 Was a work and idea lead by Yoko Ono, the project started in April 1984. Inaugurated on October 9, 1985 on what would have been Lennon's 45th birthday. Located just a few steps way from The Dakota building, on 72nd St and Central Park West.
Its 2.5-acres Garden Memorial, designed by the landscape architect Bruce Kelly, in the memory of former Beatles member John Lennon. It is named after the Beatles' song "Strawberry Fields Forever", written by Lennon, the garden has a tear drop shape of land and inside has circular pathway mosaic on inlaid tiles from Naples, with a single world, the title of Lennon’s most famous song “Imagine”.
John and Yoko used to walk, hang out and had caffe breaks and chattings and one of their favorite spots was precisely where now lays Strawberry Fields. It’s believe also that some of the ashes of John were scattered underneath the mosaic, since J. Lennon’s ashes ended in all around Central Park, nowadays Strawberry Fields serves as Lennon’s official gravesite.

Herbert Mc.

Lic. NYC Pedicab Tour Guide, working at #centralparkpedicabs 

Work cited & sources

1. Most Popular Movies Locations at Onthesetnewyork/mostpopulartheDakota.html 

  1. “John Lennon’s ghost pays son a visit.” 17 October 2007. Web. 27 December 2015.
  2. Borgeson, K. “Go Inside New York’s Most Famous Apartment Building.” Architectural Digest. 9 November 2015. 
  3. Understanding and Using Numerology - Pandey, Aaadietya. (2006). Numerology: The number game
  4. The Dakota Building, 72nd St & Central Park. West
  5. Significance & Meaning Of Angel Number 1881. Lara
  6. Welcome to New York City, Motown of the Early 20th Century
  7. New York City subway opens
  8. John Lennon: After he was shot in 1980, there was no funeral for the legendary Beatle
  9. Anderson, Susan Heller; Bird, David (March 22, 1984). "NEW YORK DAY BY DAY; Ground Is Broken For Strawberry Fields". The New York Times. Retrieved April 14, 2019.
  10. Chapman was denied a parole on Sept. 2020
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