Emily Belz

Emily reports for WORLD Magazine from New York City. Follow Emily on Twitter @emlybelz.

Robert Wright/The New York Times/Redux

City of empty suites

Regulation | New York considers a big tax on expensive, unoccupied condos
by Emily Belz
Posted 3/26/19, 05:04 pm

A New York moment:

A friend of mine works in the construction industry here and has taken me to top penthouse apartments during construction, the ones with price tags north of $50 million. Any price tag over my monthly rent invoice makes my eyes glaze over, and sometimes even the rent bill does that. 

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Russell Makofsky via AP

Chess with Tani

New York | A Christian family that fled Boko Haram and lives in a New York homeless shelter has captivated the city, thanks to a chess-playing 8-year-old
by Emily Belz
Posted 3/20/19, 01:07 pm

A New York moment: 

Please, steel yourself. An 8-year-old boy, the son of devout Christian parents who recently fled Boko Haram in Nigeria, just won the state chess championship in New York for his age group. New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof has the full, incredible story. 

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Piotr Redlinski for <em>The New York Times</em>/Redux

Magical thinking

Religion | Americans—including some churchgoers—are showing an increasing interest in New Age beliefs and practices
by Emily Belz
Posted 3/14/19, 02:16 pm

Maha Rose, a crystal shop and reiki healing center in Brooklyn, asks clients to remove their shoes when they enter, so on a Tuesday afternoon Brooklynites were quietly padding around tables of crystals in their socks. The crystals, priced from $6 to $40, each have descriptions of what they do: Citrine “raises self esteem,” black moonstone “enhances fertility,” and labradorite “calms overactive minds.” For tangerine quartz, “singing to it while it is in your pocket cultivates a more positive future.”

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