The doors of the Fairway grocery store were blown out. Several cars left in the parking lot were shifted by flood waters overnight and were left crammed door to door.
Schwartz and her husband rode out the storm on the third floor of the residences above the Fairway and said white-capped flood waters reached at least 3 feet around the building.
"It was scary how fast the water came up," she said.
The facade of a four-story Manhattan building in the Chelsea neighborhood crumbled and collapsed suddenly, leaving the lights, couches, cabinets and desks inside visible from the street. No one was hurt, although some of the falling debris hit a car.
The city shut all three of its airports, its subways, schools, stock exchanges, Broadway theaters and closed several bridges and tunnels Monday as the weather worsened. By evening, the storm surge was threatening Manhattan's southern tip and utilities deliberately darkened part of the borough to avoid storm damage.
It could be several days to a week before all residents who lost power during the storm get their lights back, officials said.
On Tuesday, the New York Stock Exchange was to be closed again - the first time it's been closed for two consecutive days due to weather since 1888, when a blizzard struck the city.
At least 1 million customers lost power in New York City, the northern suburbs and coastal Long Island, where floodwaters swamped cars, downed trees and put neighborhoods under water.
On coastal Long Island, floodwaters swamped cars, downed trees and put neighborhoods under water as beachfronts and fishing villages bore the brunt of the storm. A police car was lost rescuing 14 people from the popular resort Fire Island.