Sunday, June 12, 2011

Destination New York – “The One!”

From as long as I can remember back in the early 90’s I was totally hooked on the movie Home Alone 2 starring Macaulay Culkin who ends up on the wrong flight to New York City and spends the holidays away from his family at the Plaza Hotel. From that moment I fell in love with the City, it became my dream destination. If I were to describe New York today, in one word, it would be MAGICAL. My first trip to New York was to celebrate my 26th birthday in October 2009, and the trip was a birthday gift from my darling mother. You know what they say, you either love New York or you hate it. I absolutely adored it. October is a great month to be in the City, it is that time of year that it is neither hot nor cold, and actually you get to feel the seasons unlike in Greece where we drift from summer to winter skipping autumn and spring. Having travelled to other destinations, I can definitely say that after having spend 8 days in NYC, I still feel that there is so much that I didn’t see and do. It is the place which I can visit over and over again.

Check-in: Hudson Hotel on the 356 West 58th Street, great location and in a walking distance from the Central Park and of course the 5th Avenue. The hotel features a great bar, the Hudson bar which is a perfect place for socializing, dancing and people watching. The Morgans Group have a few interesting properties in buzzling destinations, and the Long Bar at the Sanderson’s Hotel in London is also a great place to have a cocktail or two. You know how they have the 21 age drinking law, well on my 26th Birthday after having an exceptional dinner at the Le Bernadine which is a three Michelin-starred, Zagat-rated restaurant in New York City, we headed to the Hudson Bar for some cocktails and I was asked for my ID to prove that I am over the age of 21. I said, “Sir, thank you for the compliment but honestly I am 26 and today is my Birthday”. It didn’t work I had to go up to the room and bring my ID. This was something new to me as no one in Greece asks you for your ID not even when I was 16.

Le Bernadin Restaurant
In this photo I am wearing Roberto Cavalli dress

Dining and wining: Breakfast at the Plaza was a great experience especially for someone with a hospitality background like myself. One of the things that I enjoy most when travelling is visiting as many 5-star hotels as possible just to get a gist of their service, ambience, food and renowned reputation. An afternoon wine tasting at the Waldorf Astoria is a must for those who appreciate good wine and of course are curious to visit one of New York’s historic landmark hotels. The Russian Tea Room where New York’s defining cultural moments have taken place, was definitely a place I wanted to visit being a Russian. In 2009 it was the shooting scene for an episode of Gossip Girl, where S and B stirred some exciting drama. The list of dining options in New York is endless, it is a paradise of tastes and cuisines.

Shopping: The best shopping of my life was in NYC, we came back with 6 suitcases and didn’t pay a $ for overweight. I carefully made sure that there was no weight excess in every piece of luggage. Don’t ask how we managed that. Fifth Avenue is every girl’s dream and Juicy Couture store was paradise. Prices in NYC are definitely cheaper than in Europe and also during October a lot of the stores have mid season sales! Some shoe shopping in Saks is a must, check out the hot male models at Ambercrombie & Fitch, Armani Exchange has some great stuff, and of course all the other renowned clothing labels depending on tastes and styles. Century 21 is a store that must not be missed, the longest time spent in a store was 8 hours for me and that was here! It is a shoppers paradise that has absolutely everything. I have a weak spot, I know…. I am a shopaholic. LOL

As my friend ES says, I burn credit cards in seconds.

Fifth Avenue
Juicy Store Fifth Avenue
In this photo I am wearing DKNY coat, speedy 35 Louis Vuitton bag, beret and top New Look (London), jeans River Island

Sightseeing: Take the double decker hop-on, hop-off red bus and tour the City! It is a great way to get to all the hot spots. Statue of Liberty is absolutely amazing although you might have to spend half the day in queues just to visit the statue and the Elis Island. While on that side of the City you can also visit the Brooklyn Bridge and then head to China Town or Soho for a meal. The Empire State Building, don’t go there on a foggy day as you will not see anything but you will be lucky to avoid the queues, unless you are afraid of heights like moi, which makes it the perfect day to go! MOMA is a must place for Art lovers, but you will need a few hours to see the whole place, and on busy days you might spend a good hour lining up just to go inside. An evening walk at the Times Square is thrilling, the feeling is sensational being surrounded by so many lights and skyscrapers. During the day a walk through the Central Park is totally refreshing, grab a Starbucks and off you go. Broadway…. a place not to be missed, Phantom of the Opera playing at the Majestic Theater on 247 West 44th Street, Broadway’s most haunting love story was sensational. Finally for those who appreciate Opera, a night at the Metropolitan Opera House must definitely be on the itinerary. I was lucky to get last minute tickets to watch the Aida, the performance was dazzling. New York is spectacular, the City that never sleeps and the City that I want to return to over and over again.

Waldorf Astoria-NYC
In this picture I am wearing Burberry trench coat, Louis Vuitton Scarf, Umbrella Max & Co

“Start spreading the news. I am leaving today. I want to be a part of it. New York, New York” – Frank Sinatra

1 comment:

  1. This is by far my favourite blog..i hadnt been to ny the city i was born in for 10 years and after going last xmas for a month, i made the choice to go every single xmas for at least a month to see my twin brother, shop til i drop, and relax!!! If you are in the neighborhood it would be great to see you there. I also have a lovely twin brother there (who would love to meet you) george (born in glen cove, ny)!!!


Thank you very much for your feedback! Much love xoxo ES