Dynamic, Addictive, Magical…New York City

13Sep10

New York has this vibrancy and dynamic feel to it that is hard to describe and best understood once encountered.  Each person who visits New York has a totally different experience.  It is what you make of it – just like life.

There are different events going on depending on what time of year you come to New York, but you will never be short of things to do. Two activities that I can recommend are taking the ferry to the Statue of Liberty, and visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I visit this museum time and again and it has consistently been my favorite.

SUMMER

If you come in the summer, just be aware that it’s really hot and humid in the city. If you are prepared for this and still willing to come during this time, that’s great because it is a fun time to be in New York. People are happy and flirty and the streets are buzzing with life. And the great thing is that you can escape to the Hamptons on the weekends. It is advisable to go out East with someone you know, but if you are visiting NY with a bunch of friends, this is feasible as well. You can take the LIRR or the Hampton Jitney and rent a house or a few rooms (in advance!)

Other activities in the city would include Concerts in the Parks, rooftop bars such as the Tribeca Rooftop below, and loads of summer events everywhere you look.

WINTER

New York is freezing but still beautiful at this time of year.

This is a great time to go ice skating – which is either very touristy or a cute date night type of thing to do. Christmas in New York is magical. Definitely visit Rockefeller Center and the tree – I do this whenever I’m there around Christmas even though I’m a native New Yorker.

SPRING AND FALL

These are probably the best times of the year to come to New York, weather-wise, although they last only a few weeks out of the year. And of course you have fashion week.

Gen Art Catwalk Show http://www.genart.org/
Model: Rebecca Da Costa http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3762369/

INTERNATIONAL CUISINE

Whichever cuisine you have a craving for, you can find in New York.

From pretzel stands to South Street Seaport, to quaint brunch places in the village or lively ones in Soho, to trendy places in the Meatpacking District, to top name restaurants run by world-famous chefs, you can have the ambiance and the food you are looking for.  New York has hands down the best brunch in the world. And the great thing is that the good places change all the time so you will never be short of finding something new to try.

SHOP TILL YOU DROP

Mainstream shopping can be done on 34th street, and I recommend going for a bite in Korea town next door after (35th and Broadway) at Kang Suh restaurant – look for the green awning.

The number one shopping haven in NY is Century 21 for designer discount. I recommend getting there before 11am (i.e. before the crowds). Plan on spending a few hours and a few hundred or thousand dollars and then go for a bite of pizza next door to compensate (somewhat).

Glitzy stores can be found on 5th Ave and Madison Ave. as well. This is a great place for the wealthy or for tourists to wander around and stare up at the buildings. Stop into Central Park at 5th ave for a break from the hustle bustle and have a coffee or a bite at The Boathouse.

For the stylish and trendy, I would highly recommend Soho. From the Apple store to fun boutiques, and Bloomingdales, Soho has it all. I’d also advise wandering down to Chinatown for souvenirs. Chinatown has great dim sum as well – real Chinese style, not the Americanized version. If you’ve already hit all the places I’ve mentioned, you might want to stop in at a massage place in Chinatown – they have some of the cheapest and best massage places I’ve been to. My favorite is a hole in the wall on Mott street 1 hour for $40 and my masseuse speaks no English or any other language that I could converse with him in. Perfect.

THE CITY THAT NEVER SLEEPS

Whether you are a hipster looking for bars in the Lower East Side, or a trend-setter looking for a club in Meatpacking, or you just want to have a drink at a hotel bar, or party it up on a rooftop, New York has it all, and until the early hours of the morning (although places are not open as late as in Continental Europe).

BASIC NYC NAVIGATION

  • Buy a MetroCard for the length of your stay (i.e. a 7 day pass).
  • Cabs are cheap, take them – and definitely after 10pm.
  • Always know the cross-street of your destination.

Say hi to the city for me. And as always, have a great trip!

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2 Responses to “Dynamic, Addictive, Magical…New York City”

  1. I LOVE this post!!!!! NY misses you Tai! Can’t wait to go back to Korea town with you for some bibimbap! XO

  2. 2 Yongja Kim

    You really have some very useful tips on your website. Job well done. yj


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