Ah New York, where do I even begin? Out of the cities I’ve been to, NYC is definitely the one I’ve revisited the most. Yet, I still feel overwhelmed with all of the possibilities and options each time I’m there. Maybe the thing I love most about New York, is that feeling that anything can happen. Maybe this is due to years of watching too many superhero and rom-com movies set in NYC and seeing paparazzi pics of celebs nonchalantly walking around TriBeCa, but I digress. The bottom line is that NYC is one of those places that really does live up to every shred of hype and makes you feel a little more alive just by being in its presence. I can’t even begin to do a comprehensive list of all there is to do in NYC, so instead I will focus on some of the highlights from my most recent trip there this past weekend (Labor Day Weekend).
[Before we get into this, I have to note that this trip was my first time getting to take advantage of my Global Entry (which includes TSA PreCheck) and WOWOWOW having TSA PreCheck and getting to breeze through security without having to wait through the longer security line or take off my strappy gladiator sandals was a whole new world–shining, shimmering, splendid.]
I got into NYC Saturday morning and Uber pooled it into the city (this cost ~$35 and took about an hour on the way from Newark airport to the Upper East Side and on my way out of the city ~$55 dollars and about 30 minutes from Nolita to Newark. I rec flying into JFK/LGA if possible). First stop was Instagram-friendly Bluestone Lane in the UES. Honestly, the avo toast here was aesthetically pleasing, but the bread was a little weird and hard to chew. That being said, the ambiance was just too perfect. It’s literally inside a church-structure (pictured above) and was such a snuggly, warm place to have breakfast and catch up with my friend. It’s also Aussie-run so the servers are as warm as the atmosphere!
Aside from $5 lattes, one I thing I also recommend doing in NY when the weather is nice, is heading to a rooftop bar. During my past visits I’ve gone to Le Bain at the Standard, and Gallow Green at the McKittrick Hotel. This time we headed to Mr. Purple at Hotel Indigo. The views are lovely and the cocktails pleasing, yet overpriced. You are definitely paying for the views and the people watching here, and have to deal with overbearing bouncers who don’t allow professional cameras. ugh. My pick out of these three would be Gallow Green, its so pretty and lush you won’t even notice you are paying $20 for your drink.
NY is rich in museums. Unfortunately, we went to the last night of the Manus X Machina exhibit at the Met, so if you’re reading this it’s too late. But they always have incredible exhibits happening that are included in admission. Another cool thing is that when you buy your tickets at the museum, it’s a “name your own price” ticket policy, so you can give as little or as much as you would like!
At night I highly recommend hanging around the West Village and its surrounding neighborhoods and in the day time, the West Village is the epitome of charming. It’s hard to keep in the “aw that’s so cute!” at every corner. In fact the corner where the Spotted Pig is located may be one of the most darlin’ corners in the city. We grabbed lunch there, and I have to say I was a little underwhelmed by their famous burger (honestly this is probably just because I’m not a huge Roquefort fan, and its heavy on the Roquefort). But the cocktails and fries were insane. Also fun fact, Taylor Swift and Kanye allegedly like it here. To be completely honest, we spent a good amount of time pondering what she ate and where she sat while here. No shame. Also maybe this burger is the key to a Taylor-Kanye friendship revival? Something to ponder.
Equally adorable, is Buvette, a little French cafe just a few minutes from the Spotted Pig that could not be more quaint or precious. We just stopped by for some wine and espresso but their brunch looked poppin.
After getting slightly tips at Buvette we headed to L’Artusi for our dinner res. L’Artusi is also located in the West Village and it’s a good idea to get a res pretty far in advance. It’s Italian and the ambiance is great. It’s unstuffy, yet refined enough to feel special. The whole time there felt slightly sepia-toned and enchanting (except when a dude walked in on me in the bathroom, because my wine-addled brain struggled with the lock apparently, oof). The waiter gladly helped us choose a moderately priced red wine we would like and it was delicious–and I’m not a huge red wino. I took zero pictures of the food there, but the smile on my friend’s face can give you a feel for the evening. We ordered the roasted mushrooms to start and the hazelnut chocolate torta to finish. I had the corn tortelloni as my main. Everything was perfect and I can’t recommend this place enough.
Other spots we visited over the weekend:
- The Bowery Hotel-mainly, to check out the interior. It’s super old school and subdued, but if you wanted to feel fancy is probably a great place to grab a drink.
- Cha Cha Matcha- I was stoked that the week after I went here Hilary Duff listed this place as one of her faves. Again, it’s very insta-friendly and my favorite thing was probably the matcha soft serve. I drink matcha every morning, and found their iced latte underwhelming.
- Union Fare Bakery-cool spacious “gastro-hall.” We grabbed a coffee and a birthday cake flavored croissant. Nice place to pop into for a quick snack or drink.
- Huertas – cute, authentic-seeming Spanish tapas place
- Mother of Pearl- we stumbled into this place after bar hopping from Dream Baby (fun dance-y bar). It’s a tiki bar and prob one of my fave stops of the weekend. Get the Shark Attack drink. It’s delicious and so fun. Don’t be scared off by the uber sweet sounding ingredients.
We capped off the weekend with a day in Prospect Heights/Park Slope in Brooklyn because one of my friends lives there. If you happen to be there, get Ample Hills Ice Cream! I had the Munchies flavor (pretzel steeped ice cream with m&ms, ritz and pretzels MMM) Also fun fact, they have a location at Disney World on the Boardwalk! So us Floridians can get our fill too.
Like I said, this is just a snapshot of one weekend in NYC. The possibilities there really are endless!
- Number One best suggestion you have for NYC?
- Craziest thing you’ve ever seen go down in NYC?