NY was the coldest city in America the weekend we were engaged, 11 years ago this week. Warmed by our flaming hot romance and fueled by our first visit together,
Luckily for us, because of the bitter cold temps, we had the bridge to ourselves for the fateful moment he asked me to marry him. It's nice to relive the moment every time this place pops up in films and photos, The Plaza Hotel, where we stayed, in the background.
Isn't new love grand? Now, he'd never walk around, freezing and I'd never agree to spend as much on a hotel room.
While I appreciate the iconic NY moments to be had atop the Empire State Building and standing in the incomparable, Times Square, I generally avoid touristy spots in favor of a more "local" experience when I visit. I love that every day things feel extraordinary when done in NYC and I enjoy being amidst locals, treating public spaces as an extension of their living rooms.
Sometimes a line out the door means more than just "this place is on screen"; it's simply, the best. Conversely, there's so much to uncover, every visit feels like a search for hidden gems.
Here are some of my favorite ways to experience NYC.A NY bagel (no toasting, that's insulting. perfectly crisp on the outside & chewy inside):
Arguably, one of the best is, Ess A Bagel, 831 3rd Ave Midtown
I order whole wheat everything with scallion cream cheese
|ess a bagel | photo: detailgalblog.com|
If ice skating tops your list, consider Trump's rink in Central Park, since it's typically less crowded than Rockefeller center & about half the price-CASH ONLY.
Avoid the wait for frozen hot chocolate at Seredipity3, and warm up with Hot Chocolate at City Bakery:
|City Bakery Hot Chocolate | Photo: gothamist.com|
Dodge the cronut & cupcake cults, for a chocolate chip walnut cookie at Levain Bakery . If you fell for NYC while watching Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks fall in love, than nothing feels more "NY" than a walk in the UWS, along Columbus or Amsterdam, and shopping at Zabars on Broadway.
|Levain Bakery chocolate chip walnut cookie | Photo: foodspotting.com|
|the roger hotel nyc | photo: detailgalblog.com|
In this neighborhood, you can take your morning jog in Madison Square Park.
Head left from the front doors of the hotel for good coffee at Perk Kafe, 162 E 37th just before you hit Madison Square Park.
|perk kafe murray hill | photo: detailgalblog.com|
|olde good things: ogtstore.com|
Try Penelope for comforting brunch.
And Dry Bar before your big night out. Seriously, no matter where you're staying, get on your smartphone & book yourself a blowout at Dry Bar, whichever location is available. It's simply the most feminine experience; I'm hooked!
More NYC favorites: