When I was in high school, I dreamed about graduating and heading off to NYU or Parson’s School of Fashion, living in a shoebox of an apartment and making it on my own in the big city. Now while I’m thankful that I don’t live in New York and life ended up different in the most perfect way, I still get butterflies and a magical feeling anytime the NYC skyline comes into vision. There’s just something about it. Yes, it can be noisy and crammed and dirty in some parts – but it’s also a city that’s brimming with history and unity, and hidden gems on every corner. And let’s be real, THE FOOD YA’LL!
For the first few months as a airline pilot, you are on “reserve” and Thomas’ base is JFK and Laguardia for now. We hope he gets Atlanta soon, but for now he spends a lot of time in New York (so I’m going to milk it and go visit him as much as possible obviously 😁)
Here’s how we spent 48 hours in NYC and some tips + tricks for your next visit to the big apple.
– I arrived at Laguardia around 9:00am on the 30th, the day ! Laguardia is easier than JFK in my opinion and I was literally off the plane and into my Uber in 10 minutes.
– With crazy New Years Eve crowds, we wanted to stay in lower Manhattan. We checked into the Assemblage on John Street which is the financial district only a few blocks away from One World Trade Center. WE LOVED THE HOTEL!! I honestly couldn’t believe how big the room was for such a great price + all the amazing details! The eating nook, the velvet headboard and cute lamps, all the greenery, plus an awesome cafe with complimentary tea and coffee made it even better!
– After we dropped off our bags, we went to the Plant Cafe located in the hotel and grabbed a coffee and chia oats bowl while we made our game plan for the day!
– Funny enough, by the time we drank our coffee and shared some chia oatmeal we were perfectly primed for our next meal 😆 Always thinking about food right? Luckily Xi’an Famous Foods was only a 2 minute walk from the hotel. Xi’an (pronounced she-ahn) has built an empire across NYC boasting multiple locations made famous for their hand-pulled noodles that are up to 4 ft long! Their spicy cumin lamb hand-ripped noodles are one of their most famous dishes so we obviously ordered that along with the lamb dumplings in soup, which were my personal fav, and a fresh spicy cucumber salad to balance everything out.
– Funny enough, one of my new clients for my marketing agency is located in Brooklyn, so after we slurped up our noodles and dumplings we hopped on the subway and headed to Greenpoint for a quick meeting!
-Quick tip on transportation – Take the subway! I remember when I was younger and we visited NYC we took a cab everywhere and I can only imagine how much that cost! The fare for the subway is $2.75 a ride which is substantially cheaper than any uber or taxi you can take. We got a metro card and loaded $20 on it, which is probably the most you’ll need during a quick trip! I get after dinner or something a cab ride is nice, but for the most part try and use the subway system if you want to save money.
– After going back and forth to Brooklyn once we got back to the hotel, we relaxed a bit and then got ready for dinner! I wanted a cozy bar for drinks and some good pasta (what’s new?) so I found Tiny’s and the Bar Upstairs and Terra Wine Bar, both in Tribeca.
– We walked to Tribeca for dinner and the fog/total Gothamness of the city was so on-point.
– Tiny’s and the bar upstairs is the cutest little place ever. We went to just well.. the bar upstairs 🙂 but if you want to have dinner at Tiny’s you’ll find yourself in the coziest dim lit room next to a fireplace eating pumpkin risotto 👌🏻 We were starving before our dinner resy so we split a huge bowl of mussels alongside our Negroni’s and Old Fashioneds.
– Terra was such a cozy date night spot. We had the kale caesar salad, a lamb shank, and a carbonara tortellini!
– We had wanted to get a better skyline view of the city for New Years Eve, so we checked into PUBLIC hotel which is in-between SOHO and Greenwich Village. The room was a smart room with awesome electric blinds that completely blacked out the room (very nice when you’ve got a champagne headache from New Years 🥴) Although it was modern with great views, the rooms were much smaller and more expensive than our first hotel, so out of the two I would definitely recommend The Assemblage!
– Our first stop of the day was Russ & Daughters to get a famous Lox Bagel. Unfortunately the wait was TWO HOURS so we decided to skip that and head straight to Katz Delicatessen. This has been on our bucket list for a loonggg time. The line was wrapped around the block when we arrived but it moved pretty quickly and we were digging in within 30-minutes or so. We ordered the pastrami reuben, a frankfurter with sauerkraut + mustard, and the matzo ball soup. The pastrami is the most juicy, delectable meat and made for the best reuben OF ALL TIME! The matzo ball soup and the hotdog were good, but the pastrami is the show-stopper.
– In typical me fashion, after we polished off our giant sandwiches we thought why the hell don’t we get some cheesecake?! After Katx, we started our long trek to the Rockefeller Christmas Tree and Eileen’s Special Cheesecake just happened to be on our way. We restrained from ordering an entire cheesecake for ourselves and opted for a cute mini single serving topped with yummy strawberry topping. Softest best cheesecake I’ve ever had. Make it a point to stop here for a treat!
– The Rockefeller tree was everything I thought it would be! I’ve been watching that go up since I was a little girl so it was so amazing to see it in person! Someday I want to go before Christmas to really get the whole experience, but it was still incredible around NYE! The crowds were crazy since Rockefeller is so close to Time Square! After seeing it we started making our way back to SoHo around 4:00 so we wouldn’t get stuck in terrible Time Square traffic.
– Someday I have to see the Radio City Rockette’s perform live! But walking by and seeing that glowing sign always makes me happy!
– So there’s a lot of great museums in NYC, but when you walk by the Museum of Sex it peaks your interest right?! 🙂 It was definitely interesting I’ll say that! It was $30/person. They change out the exhibits quite a bit I believe!
For New Years Eve we decided to go to Boqueria in Soho! It’s a cute Spanish tapas bar where they did a special prix-fix menu with 12 courses for New Years and bottomless sangria, beer, wine, and cava bubbles. The place was buzzing and it was such a special moment counting down almost at midnight, all wearing our silly 2020 top hats and tiaras. It was most definitely a magical night to be in NYC.
Happy 2020 my friends! More 48 hour guides to come!
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