F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic, The Great Gatsby, comes to life this spring with a new movie featuring Leonardo DiCaprio. The stir about the movie is causing many to re-read the book and again wonder about the setting where Daisy Buchanan and Jay Gatsby lived.
Fans of the story can now take a boat tour of “the courtesy bay” that separates the two “eggs” in Fitzgerald’s book.
The Great Gatsby Boat Tour operator, Eleanor Cox, said there is a lot to see regarding both the book and the author remaining in the area. “There are yacht clubs on the bay and buildings in town that were there when F. Scott Fitzgerald lived in Great Neck between 1922 and 1924,” she said.
Participants will see “a home belonging to Carl Graham Fisher which was built in 1922, and the home belonging to Raoul Fleischmann built in the early 1920’s,” she said. “The private owner tells me the ceiling in the living room is the upside-down wedding cake which is described in the book when Nick first visits Daisy at the Buchanan residence in East Egg.”
Along the tour, they also point out “where Fitzgerald likely sat with his good friend Ring Lardner on a summer’s eve — disappointingly now an office building,” she said.
The tour operators encourage tourists to imagine where Gatsby’s mansion might have stood, and to turn across the bay to see where Daisy Buchanan might have lived during the roaring 20s represented in the book.
So, does a green light flash on what was Daisy’s dock? “If there is a green-flashing light on one of the docks, we’ve not seen it,” Eleanor said. “Was there a green-flashing light on one of the docks back in Fitzgerald’s day? Doubtful. Good old literary symbolism and fiction — where will it all end?”
Eleanor said Baz Luhrmann, director of the new movie, and Catherine Martin, costume and set designer, “took the tour in September 2008 as part of their research for the film.”
The 90-minute tour of Manhasset Bay and Long Island Sound accommodates 30 people. Reservations are required for The Great Gatsby Boat Tour. The offer water and soft drinks on the boat for a small charge.