Auto electronics have changed a lot since 1989. Tape decks gave way to iPods, LCD screens brought movies to the back seat, and the Internet expanded from college campuses to car interiors. Frank Rodriquez and his crew at Exotic Auto Boutique have worked on the frontlines of this technological evolution, wielding a half century of collective expertise while tailoring vehicles' aesthetics and equipment. Specializing in seamless audio updates using Soundstream equipment, the team also sells listening gear for DIY installation from other brands including Pyle and Kenwood. With an enthusiasm for unusual projects, they invite big dreamers in for complimentary consultations for projects to make over school buses as limos, trick out children's bikes, or transform pumpkins into horse-drawn teleportation devices.
The hard-working car washers at Staten Island Auto Bath restore glowing complexions to autos while protecting tires and paint from damage. Using high-pressure machines, they evict grime from jalopies and add protective coats of wax, tire-shielding treatments, and a thick pair of long underwear to restore showroom shines. Air compressors dry all visiting vehicles, which roll in and out from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday?Saturday, closing at 4:30 p.m. on Sundays.
Two Guys Autoplex has been in the auto business for more than 30 years, and during that time it's mastered just about every facet of auto care. Aside from a wide slate of repairs and maintenance services—performed by ASE-certified technicians who hold specialties in European, Japanese, and American vehicles—the shop offers detailing services, auto-body and glass repairs, custom design, and upholstery restoration. Two Guys Autoplex is also a licensed New York State inspection station, and therefore qualified to test vehicles for emissions, smog, and high fevers.
It's nearly impossible for anything in New York City to be one-of-a-kind, yet The V-Spot just may have accomplished that feat with a menu that is all at once Latin, vegan, and kosher certified. Though seemingly random, the combination of culinary styles was a natural choice for founders Alex and Dan Carabano: they are vegetarians of Colombian descent who were born and raised in Brooklyn.
The menu stays meat-free through an artful balance of veggies, tofu, and seitan, blending them in dishes such as a chipotle wrap with seitan, avocado, and vegan cheeses. The empanadas are quite popular, including the Philly with mushrooms, peppers and housemade seitan, as are buffalo "chicken" wings that garnered a nod from the New York Times. Traditional seasonings such as authentic Mexican salsa, seitan, and adobo are made from scratch in-house, lending flavor to cholesterol-free dishes that can be enjoyed amid the dining room's exposed brick, on the warm-weather patio, or, if you're a magician, inside a top hat.
Having left the corporate world to pursue his automotive passions more than 20 years ago, owner Uri Shemelzman and his attentive staff at Classic Seville Car Wash devote their time to full-service cleanings at the auto center's half-acre complex. Within the indoor car-wash facility, biodegradable products scour rides during hand washes or 5- to 7-minute automated car washes that drivers can cheer on from behind glass windows. During interior and exterior detailing sessions, the crew makes over vehicles with leather varnish and waxes until autos are confident enough to merge onto fashion runways. Classic Seville Car Wash lathers cars, motorcycles, trucks, and RVs seven days a week.