It provides shaded seating, and a vantage point to view the water and surrounding landscapes.
The Ladies Pavilion was designed by architect Jacob Wrey Mould in 1871 as a shelter for carriage riders. It was originally located near the entrance to the Park at 59th Street and Eighth Avenue. It was moved to Hernshead in 1913 to make way for the Maine Monument.
By the early 1970s, the structure was in ruins. In 1973, citizens concerned about the condition of Central Park formed a group called Friends of Central Park; they raised funds to rebuild and restore the structure. This project, which pre-dated the creation of the Central Park Conservancy, was notable as an early example of citizen-led investment in the Park.