A Century of Bookstores: Celebrating Milestone Moments at Bibliotheque

I am deeply passionate about books and bookstores. No matter where I go, I always leave the house with a book. Visiting bookstores has been a cherished activity since I started reading, as I couldn’t rely solely on friends and family to keep up with my voracious appetite for books. I fondly remember visiting bookstores with my dad, an avid reader.

Once I caught the book bug, I couldn’t resist entering a bookstore whenever I spotted one. This habit continued until, a couple of years ago, I decided to not only visit bookstores but also keep track of them. I now have a list of stores I’ve visited worldwide, complete with names and pictures. Additionally, I set a bucket list goal to visit 500 bookstores in my lifetime.

In pursuit of this goal, I make it a point to scout for bookstores wherever I am in the world and spend time among the books and shelves. Recently, I reached a significant milestone by visiting my 100th bookstore, Bibliotheque, a book bar in New York City. Bibliotheque is a unique blend of a bookstore, café, and wine bar, offering different atmospheres depending on the time of day. During the day, it’s a café and workspace, while in the evening, it transforms into a wine bar with a more social and intimate setting. I had heard about it from my son, and visiting it was an experience to cherish.

The visit was memorable for several reasons: it marked my 100th bookstore, and the concept of combining reading, coffee, wine, and even working in such an environment was intriguing. I walked in with high expectations, and Bibliotheque did not disappoint. The first sight was of people near the entrance chatting and reading, with a bar counter nearby. As I explored further, the place revealed itself in full glory.

The interior is designed to resemble a luxurious home library, with high ceilings, chandeliers, and floor-to-ceiling bookshelves filled with nearly 10,000 books, including first editions and signed copies. The staff is actively involved in recommending books and assisting customers. The bookshelves left me in awe, offering a diverse range of genres from memoirs, mysteries, thrillers, and poetry to historical fiction and non-fiction. You can buy any book or read it while enjoying your coffee or wine. The soft lighting and abundance of books create a cosy and warm literary atmosphere.

We spent a memorable evening there, drinking our favourite Rosé with cheese while discussing different kinds of books. The entire experience was soul-stirring and highly fulfilling, leaving me completely overwhelmed by the end.

Also Read: Minoa Bookstore and Cafe, Istanbul

In a world consumed by devices, Bibliotheque offers a refreshing break. It’s a place where you can immerse yourself in books and unplug from your devices. Laptops are allowed between 10 AM and 5 PM for remote workers but not after 5 PM. The place is the brainchild of a father-son duo—a world-renowned facial plastic surgeon and an acclaimed writer who is also the founder of a literary and arts journal called The Spotlong Review. Their shared passions for great literature, outstanding food, coffee, and wine led to the establishment of this book paradise.

Bibliotheque also features fine art from several well-known artists, adding to its cultural vibrancy. It’s a great space for author readings, wine tastings, art and drawing classes, musical acts, and more.

I couldn’t have asked for a better place to celebrate my 100th bookstore visit!

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Hello! I’m Sangeeta Relan. Aside from being an educationist teaching at the university level for the last 28 years, I have been a corporate wife and a mother to two boys who have now flown the nest. I love cooking, singing, travelling and exploring new places.

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