New York City, New York (Ginny Rothschild)
This is a list for downtowners....I lived at 12th and 6th and these are the places I go back on each of my visits.
- More about your oliver guide: Ginny Rothschild
- Trip type: Adult, City
- Activity level: easy
- Ideal length of trip: NYC IS GREAT FOR ANY LENGTH OF STAY - BUT I AM ALL ABOUT 3 NIGHTS IF POSSIBLE.
to & from
- I prefer flying into JFK or Newark because you can take a train or subway into the city. Most of the time this will be a faster and a lot less of a headache than dealing with the traffic in a cab or uber.
- Once in the city I walk or take the subway.
Where to Stay
- My new favorite is Hotel Eventi- it is a Kimpton property and centrally located to walk or subway most places. They have excellent coffee and a free daily happy hour. The restaurants/bars within the hotel are great as well.
- I am a huge fan of Hotel Tonight for NYC trips. Use the app and you can book a hotel 6 days before your trip. I have always found great deals at awesome hotels. (Soho Grande, Dream Hotel, Gem Hotel Chelsea, The Standard)
Where to Eat and Drink
This is a list for downtowners….I lived at 12th and 6th and these are the places I go back on each of my visits. This is hard to narrow down, but I tried to list my true favorites. I am not a picky eater- I just like good food. You will notice it is Italian/Oyster/Burger heavy. Enjoy.
- Murray's Bagel's- my favorite bagels in town. They have 2 locations and also deliver in case you feel like sleeping in.
- Superiority Burger- you will think you are eating In and Out, but it is all vegetarian. Incredible. Only about 4 seats, so more of a take out place.
- Luke's Lobster- best lobster rolls in town....and best deal for a lobster roll. They now have at least 5-10 locations throughout the city. Make it a priority to get to one. Everything in the shop is from Maine. They also have clam chowder and Maine microbrews.
- The Dutch- Good for brunch and great for dinner. Save room for pie!
- Fedora- Make reservations, recommend requesting seats at the bar if party of 1 or 2. Food is excellent. Fun place to do a private dinner in their basement for 8-10 people as well.
- Spotted Pig- oysters, burgers, fries....don't mess with the burger. Order as is. Go early if you don't want a wait. They do lunch and dinner.
- John Dory- connected to Ace Hotel. Wonderful small plates of seafood specialties. Be adventurous.
- Smith & Mill's- Very small restaurant/bar, very small menu, all made on a small hot plate. This is a local's hangout and I can't believe I'm sharing this broadly. You may miss it. Place looks like a total hole in a wall.
- Warren 77- favorite non sports bar sports bar. Excellent food and best place to watch any sport. They take reservations if you want to reserve a table for a game.
- Mermaid Oyster Inn for $1 Oyster Happy Hour, Drinks specials, and the Calamari/Feta/Mushroom Salad - Skip their fish tacos
- Red Farm- dumplings!
- Gradisca- sneaky good Italian. Mama rolls the pasta in the corner. Not difficult to get a reservation.
- Fat Radish- hearty vegetable and meat dishes done in unique preparations
- Red Cat- I still try and replicate one of their appetizers- shaved zucchini and manchego...consistently good food
- ABC Cocina/ABC Kitchen- both are excellent and inside ABC Carpet and Home. Need reservations. Order a lot and share. Save time to wander throughout ABC Carpet and Home. Also worth wandering through Union Square market if the farmer's market is going on or during the holiday market season.
- Il Buco- another cozy, yummy, phenomenal Italian restaurant....their sister restaurant is Il Buco Alimentari & Vineria
- L'Artusi- Italian, more of a scene, but not overkill. They do a great brunch as well
What to Do
- Go Ice Skating- best option to avoid the tourists is the rink at between 106th and 108th in Central Park. Take the subway and it won't feel that far away. Grab brunch of dinner afterward at Red Rooster. (Make reservations) If you are not that adventurous- go to Bryant Park and then hit up Keen's (old school steakhouse) for dinner afterward.
- Chelsea Market - Go hungry...Wander, eat, shop, and repeat.
- The Highline- Before or after you go to Chelsea Market walk The Highline. Start at 12th and go all the way up to the mid 30's.
- If you are in need of real exercise walk, run or bike along The Hudson- great path and good people watching...or subway up to Central Park. NYC has such good green space and running/biking paths. True NYCer's take full advantage.
- Shop- take advantage of all the stores that exist in NYC and nowhere else. Shop big, shop small. Love wondering Soho, West Village, Flatiron.
If you want to see a show and have not bought tickets ahead of time go to the Half Price Ticket Booth in South Street Seaport. Go when it opens. Line will be SO much shorter than Time Square. Plus you avoid Time Square until you actually go to the theater.
Do your best to avoid Times Square.
See fashion editor and NYC native, Elizabeth Mendoza’s, Oliver Guide here.
See Cynthia Pillsbury’s NYC Oliver Guide here. (Great for kids!)
See Courtney Gerlich’s NYC Oliver Guide here. (A great place to start!)
And our “friend” Jessica Seinfeld has a great list of restaurants on her site, here.