In New York
Concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There’s nothing you can’t do
Now you’re in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
Let’s hear it for New York, New York, New York
I can’t help but sing that when I think of NYC.
Everyone has their personal favorites in New York and here are mine. There is an ever-growing list of things I NEED to try and see, but that is honestly one of my favorite parts about New York, there is always something for next time.
Where to Stay:
This is truly an experience hotel. I grew up watching Home Alone 2 and was so jealous of Kevin McAlister and his stay here, I was so surprised when Ethan booked a long weekend get away for us here. It has everything, from coffee, to high tea, to a champagne bar. The rooms are amazing, comfy, and big! The staff is so accommodating and helps with reservations and booking car services. This is a splurge, for sure.
This is great if you are only going to New York City for the night. You can only book one night and you have to book it that day, so it really is for someone who is up for anything and staying in any area. We have used this with great success.
What To Do:
Original Macy’s Wooden Escalator: You have to stop into the original Macy’s. I guarantee you it is unlike any Macy’s you have ever been to. It has 9 floors of amazingness and lots of specialty shops not usually included in Macy’s. Check out the original wooden escalators, it is so cool! This is great for anytime of the year, but I particularly love it during Christmas or on a rainy day. Make sure to check out the “where to drink” section below and hit up Waffels & Dinges for a caffeine kick to help you make it up all 9 floors!
Ride Bikes in Central Park: Seeing Central Park is a must when in NYC. There are so many options, but my favorite way is to rent the bikes and go for a quick ride around. There is great people watching, food carts, and markets.
Get a view of the city: Empire State Building: Get a great view of the city from any of the numerous spots, but I love seeing it from the top of the Empire State Building, there is nothing like it. You really feel like you are at the top of the world. Buy your tickets online to skip the line!
Walk Down 5th Avenue: Experience the hustle & bustle of the city while walking down 5th Avenue and popping in to the luxurious stores and window-shopping, or if you are lucky bring something home!
Statue of Liberty/Battery Park: Take a boat out to see the Statue of Liberty or view it from Battery Park (my preferred method) it seems there is never enough time in NYC and I think the view is gorgeous from Battery Park.
See a show on Broadway: Another classic in New York City. I love going to the shows in the evening and dressing up. My favorites have been The Newsies, The Book of Mormon and my very favorite, Hamilton. It is worth the hype!
Food Walking Tour: This is a half-day activity, but SO much fun. We did The Original Greenwich Village tour and I cannot wait to go back and try out the China Town tour. You are in a small group 10-20 people and it is a walking tour in a neighborhood area of NYC and you get to try samples of all of the favorites, it is a great way to try some local favorites and immerse yourself in the local culture. This is the company we used, #notsponsored.
Where to Eat:
Chelsea Market: This is another foodie haven. I recommend trying all of the spots and splitting something small at each one! My favorite 2 spots in here are: Los Tacos No.1 (try the green sauce, it’s delicious!) and The Lobster Place (we got The Poorman’s Lobster and it was enough for us to split!)
Jon’s Pizza: Everyone has their favorite pizza spot and I haven’t tried all of them (obviously), but this is my favorite. The only downfall is they don’t serve by the slice, so bring your appetite and a few friends and dig in. They have multiple locations and I think they are equally as great all over, even in Times Square!
Junior’s Cheesecake: My favorite must stop at dessert location. We usually swing by after a show and take it to-go to our hotel. Just plain cheesecake, please!
Tompkins Square Bagel: New York is known for it’s bagels and this is THE spot. The pastrami lox is life-changing on an everything bagel and Ethan really enjoyed the french toast bagel with birthday cake frosting.
Shake Shack: If you haven’t tried Shake Shack, do it! They have the best burgers, and portobello mushroom sandwich (my order!), cheese fries, and a special beer brewed locally with Brooklyn Brewing Co.
Per Se: This was a bucket list check for me. It was phenomenal and had a hefty price tag with it. This meal was a gift from Ethan. I will highly recommend doing the tasting menu with the wine pairing. It is an experience that you will never forget. Reservations aren’t easy to come by, use your hotel, your American Express concierge, and even check Open Table if you are feeling lucky! Dress up and come prepared for an experience of a lifetime.
Momufuku Noodle Bar: A fun spot with benches and a great spot to dive into to escape the cold and warm up with seriously excellent ramen.
Restaurant Marc Forgione: This is one of those spots we keep going back to, we can’t help ourselves. We always get the Chili Lobster which is served with Texas toast and maybe one of the best dishes I have EVER eaten. I also always order whatever is on the menu with his proposal sauce (hopefully scallops!)
Where to Drink:
Please Don’t Tell: Located inside Crif’s Hotdogs. Start calling the day you want to go at exactly 3 PM and call over and over and over until they answer. This has worked for me everytime, be flexible with your evening and then plan the rest of the night around this cocktail bar. It is SO COOL. You enter through a telephone booth and the cocktails are amazing. You will find their cocktail book in every cocktail bar around the world.
Black Tap Burger Bar: These shakes are EVERYTHING. And literally have everything on them. The perfect sweet treat, definitely worth every calorie and the trip.
Champagne Bar @ The Plaza: Treat yo’self and celebrate with some bubbles. They have a really great list of champagnes and a great vibe, atmosphere at the front of The Plaza hotel. The perfect way to start or end any evening.
The Ginger Man: Another favorite beer bar. Always an excellent draftlist and is an OG in the beer world!
Waffels & Dinges: A perfect coffee spot, my favorite location is right in front of the original Macy’s to get the extra caffeine for power shopping! Ethan loves the affogato and Belgium waffle pairings, while I choose the latte, every time.
Arts & Crafts Beer Parlor: Of course this wouldn’t be a Barbee Housewife Travel Guide without letting you know about the best beer spots, this spot had a great tap list, excellent name, and great customer service. The beer buyer likes hazy IPAs, so had some great ones on draft.
Happy Traveling, The Barbee Housewife