It’s been 13 years since the last episode of F.R.I.E.N.D.S aired on TV, but ask the fans, and you’ll see how fresh the memory of everyone’s beloved show is in their minds, the reason behind which is endless repeat telecasts of the show over years on popular demand. The show was not only one of the most followed around the world in the years that it ran on TV, it has also become one of the most seen show years after its production stopped, a cult status claimed by only a few shows in the history of television. Because the show is capable of evoking nostalgia unlike anything we’ve watched on TV before or after it, it only makes sense for the fans to relive their favourite moments by visiting the places that featured on the show. Here goes:
If you didn’t already know, we hate to break it to you that the hip Central Perk cafe where a large chunk of scenes are shot, and on whose couch Ross, Chandler, Phoebe, Monica, Rachael and Joey spent years drinking coffee is not real. The cafe was built inside the Warner Brother Studios. Disappointed? There’s a silver lining. There is in fact a cafe whose exterior was used to show Central Perk from outside in the Bedford Street, New York. The cafe, however, is called the Little Owl and serves Mediterranean cuisine. Still want the real deal? Take a tour of Warner Brother Studios where the set is preserved for public tours.
The place where the central characters of the show hanged out all those years, Monica’s Apartment is not real either, and was instead built in a studio in Los Angeles. But the good news for the fans is that the building and the surrounding area in which the apartment was shown to be located is in fact a block found at the intersection of the Grove Street and the Bedford Street in the West Village, New York.
‘So no one told you life was gonna be this way’, the first images to strike the fans on hearing the title track I’ll be there for you’ are of the central characters having a splash near the fountain, and shaking a leg. While the fountain that you see in the show is not real, it is the exact replica of the the Pulitzer Fountain in Grand Army Plaza and the Cherry Hill fountain in the Central Park, New York.
But what about the museum where Ross worked and where him and Rachael slept together for the first time? Does it really exist? Well, sorry folks, it’s not real either. What is shown as The New York Museum of Prehistoric History is actually a set fashioned after the real life American Museum of Natural History.
The Scenes Shot in London
So F.R.I.E.N.D.S did come to London in its 4th season for the wedding of Ross and Emily. But unlike the scenes shot in the US, the scenes in London were filmed at some real locations. The scene where Joey heads out with a map to discover the city was shot outside the London Marriott Hotel whereas the one where he buys the Union Jack hat was filmed on the Trinity Square. Throughout the episodes, the fans get glimpses of popular landmarks of London including Thames, Buckingham Palace and Big Ben.