Welcome to New York
It’s often known as the “city that never sleeps”, and while that title rings true, to us it’s better known as “our go-to getaway”. I have such a soft spot for this gorgeous place, so much so that my husband and I would live there in a split second if we could. But since we can’t, not at this moment in time anyway, we’ve made a pact to go as often as possible. There’s just something unexplainably special about NYC. Each time we step foot off of the plane it feels like we’re welcomed with arms wide open back to our second home. Although there’s a high dose of constant hustle and bustle, there’s such a warmth about it. Just speaking of it brings on a flurry of excitement and, if you haven’t heard it before, this time of year is the best time to go. The Christmas decs are starting to spring up, the massive balloons are being blown up across the greens of Central Park, the world’s most famous tree is preparing to be lit in all of its splendor and, if you’re especially lucky, you’ll have a sprinkle of snow to ring in the Christmas season.
So if you’re planning a trip in the very near future OR dreaming one up, let our Fashion and Beauty Editor Lucy, give you her favourite ins and outs from her recent trip. If you’re not already convinced it’s a place you need to visit, you will be after reading this…
My City Guide – NYC
I have been visiting NYC for over 10 years now as my Dad lives out there and I love it more and more each time I go and the older I get. Having stocked up on chunky knits and cosy boots this A/W ready to brave the icy climates stateside and I was pleasantly surprised (if not a little disappointed!) to arrive in unseasonably warm weather. So throwing the coat aside here’s what I got up to on my recent trip, I hope it gives you some inspiration if planning your own stay in the The Big Apple.
Where I stayed:
My visit was in conjunction with a business trip for my husband so we stayed downtown in the Financial District, brilliantly situated just off Broadway and close to Battery Park. It was perfect and easily accessible by subway (which I got to grips with this time and now love). Most hotel rooms in Manhattan are on the small side so don’t expect sprawling rooms but this was perfectly comfortable and clean. And in the city that never sleeps you rarely spend much time in your hotel room anyway!
Where I ate:
This is such a cute and cosy feeling Italian with incredible food to match. We were a large group of 9 so opted for ‘family style’ sharing platters. The service was impeccable and it had a great vibe, even on a Monday night it was packed.
The Meatball Shop, Stanton Street, Lower East side location (they have 6 restaurants across New York)
What a fun concept, meatballs and more meatballs! Luckily I’m not a vegetarian so jumped at the chance to try this meat-lovers mecca (as recommended by none other than The Brew’s Founder & Creative Director Tara!) Who knew meatballs came in such different varieties? I opted for the classic beef ‘Meatball Smash’ (basically a meatball burger) with mushroom gravy and mozzarella. Well why not?! And the verdict….meatball heaven.
Indochine is one of NYC’s most infamous restaurants with celebrities and fashion folk alike (Olivia Palermo frequently names it as her favourite restaurant in New York) and it boasts some great history since it opened in the 80s. Serving exquisite French-Vietnamese in it’s ever bustling, tropical themed atmosphere, my husband and I truly filled our boots here and left very full and happy. We shared the summer roll and beef tartare to start. For mains we opted for glazed duck breast and the Amok Cambodian (filet of sole marinated in coconut milk, cabbage and lime leaves steamed in a banana leaf).
A colonial style tavern, dating back to 1762, this is the perfect place to take any men in your life. With 130 craft beers and ciders on offer and a delicious pub style menu its low lighting and cosy features are extremely inviting. My Dad and I could have spent all afternoon here sheltering from the rain.
A great spot for some lunch during a day of shopping and a chance to drop the bags for a bit! This Asian, fuss free, restaurant (similar vibe to Wagamama’s) delivers delicious food at affordable prices. From a bowl of noodles to a heart warming curry there’s a great selection on the menu as well as some mouth-wateringly-good juices. It’s now a firm favourite of mine.
What I did:
Having eaten at the top of the World Trade Centre’s when I was younger I was keen to see how the space has been transformed since the awful attacks of 9/11. I urge anyone visiting Manhattan to take a wander around the memorial site and spare a minute to remember those who tragically lost their lives that day. The newly planted trees and vast concrete monuments inscribed with names of the victims are a fitting tribute to all those involved and effected.
Cycling in Central Park
City Bikes are a fantastic way of getting around the island so we hopped on and took a trip around central park one day. Autumn is a truly stunning time of year to visit and see the ever-changing colours of the park. Luckily they shut the park to traffic after and before rush hour so all you have to manoeuvre yourself around a few horse and carts and pedestrians. For a quick pit stop I love Tavern on the Green who do the best brunches at weekends in this leafy location. You’ll easily forget the hustle and bustle of city life for a few hours here.
This is a bit of ritual treat for me on the last day of a trip to set me up for returning home. You can find a beauty salon on nearly every block and they are all very reasonably priced. I paid $29 for a mani and pedi. Grab a Starbucks and a magazine and enjoy a peaceful pampering hour or so. If you want a slightly more upmarket experience then opt for Bliss Spa who have a fantastic range of treatments including the Double Choc Pedicure for $70, enjoy a chocolate treat whilst you get polished!
Where I shopped:
This place is dangerous if you love a designer a bargain! Brilliant for jeans, pricier items like coats and any accessories. My one word of advice is don’t spend too long thinking about your purchase. I was gutted when I lost out on a pair of Stella McCartney sunglasses for $50 after I stupidly put them back to ‘think about it’ only later to go back for them and they were gone! It’s a great place to browse around, probably not best to go with anything too specific in mind though.
I love shopping on 5th Avenue feeling a bit like Audrey Hepburn from Breakfast at Tiffany’s (although sadly I didn’t score anything from Tiffany’s this time). I started up at Sak’s and worked my way down. Uniqlo’s flagship store is well worth a visit, I bagged a great winter coat here, and GAP is always high up on my list for jeans and staples. I headed further downtown to between 14th and 22nd where you’ll find some great stores like J.Crew, Madewell, Old Navy, Anthropologie and Kate Spade.
Macy’s is always a fun visit, especially for those of us from across the pond who can pick up a 10% discount visitors pass. I stocked up on some Khiel’s products this time and browsed the shoe studio. Always head to the sale room where they have a great selection of discounted styles.
Because no visit to the states is complete for me without visiting beauty giant Sephora. I love trying out their huge selection of makeup and picking up a few new bits. This time I stocked up on my favourite brands Urban Decay, Makeup Forever and Bobbi Brown.
So there you go, just a small snippet into my latest stateside visit. Have fun planning your own trip!