4, 5, 6, 7, S at Grand Central-42nd St.
American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
This store bills itself the “world’s largest collection of gems, minerals, and fossils.” Indeed, the showroom holds a plethora of exotic stones of every size and color from around the world, including vivianite from Bolivia, aragonite from Morocco, and stibnite from China. A third-generation, family-run business, Astro is is open to everyone, including kids who gravitate toward the bins of tumbled stones and those interested in the healing properties of tourmalines, citrines, and moonstones—though it clearly caters to serious collectors who will pay thousands for the right rock. There’s plenty of jewelry on display, such as tiger-eye pendants and amber earrings, and the store’s jeweler creates custom orders. Glass cases lining the walls of the long space hold corals, fossils, African Shona art, and a technicolor assortment of stone animals, while large, cracked-open geodes and black tables set with agate bookends, gemstone trees, and raw minerals fill the rest of the main floor.