New York City
My impatient fifteen year old self finally made it to the Big Apple! State College and Boston were great, but I was ready for the grand finale.
New York City was a place I had always wanted to venture to as a little girl. It had always seemed so glamorous, yet so unattainable, so when my parents said:
Taylor, for your 16th birthday, you can either have a big party, or we can take a trip anywhere in the United States- what’s it gonna be?
The answer was obvious.
The car ride seemed much longer than it actually was. That pit stop in Hoboken, New Jersey to pee was torture. We did get to buy some sweets from Carlo’s Bakery from TLC’s Cake Boss. Cool, I guess. But it’s not New York City. So close, yet so far. I NEEDED to get into the city.
Creeping along through the tunnel from New Jersey to New York had me on the edge my seat. Well, not on the edge… I had unbuckled, cranking my neck in between the seats of my parents, talking their ear off, telling them all the things I wanted to do.
When we emerged into the city, right into the heart of it, I was dumbfounded. I’ve been to some pretty cool cities all over the world, and not a single one is like New York City.
Ellen’s Stardust Diner- Located right on Broadway, you get a dinner and a show here. It’s your traditional 50’s style diner, and the staff with sing and dance for you. The location is perfect and the nostalgia is even better.
Rissoteria- This is perfect for the the celiac or the person who is just a pain in the ass when it comes to food and is located in Greenwich Village. Risotteria is an Italian Restaurant and Bakery that specializes in gluten free and vegetarian options!
I’m sure there are a plethora of fancy schmancy hotels in New York City, and if that is what you’re going for, more power to you. I’d rather blow that money at Juicy Couture on 5th Avenue.
The Crowne Plaza Time Square- It may not be the Ritz Carleton, but I loved staying here. The rooms were spacious and nicely furnished, and the staff was incredible. Take advantage of the concierge! They will find you great rates on Broadway tickets and let you know what is going on in the city during your stay. My favorite part of the Crowne Plaza Times Square is the location, of course. It’s right on Broadway in the heart of Times Square. Walking out of the doors right into the excitement of the city every morning was exhilarating. Rooms are about $300 a night. Visit www.cpmanhattantimessquare.com to check it out.
See the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building and Central Park. That’s all fabulous, but it’s typical. Make sure you check out these too!
FAO Schwarz- Don’t deny your inner child this experience. FAO Schwarz is a legendary toy store that was established in 1862. The famous “Big Piano” is irresistible to run across and create your own tune, and make sure you have your own mini photo shoot with the real life toy solider waiting outside to greet you. The Toys R Us in Times Square is definitely worth a trip as well, but FAO Schwarz is your charming, classic toy store.
Dylan’s Candy Bar- I am OBSESSED with Dylan’s Candy Bar. Even attempting to describe this slice of heaven to you wouldn’t do it justice. The creation of Dylan’s Candy Bar was inspired by Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, and when you step inside, it truly is a world of pure imagination. Stories upon stories of candy, anything and everything that someone with a sweet tooth could ever want. You may have seen it in movies like Hitch or Arthur, and multiple episodes of Gossip Girl, but you must see it for yourself.
See A Broadway Show- Do it. Just do it. Don’t even think about going to New York City without seeing a broadway show. To save money, try a matinee performance instead of an evening show. I’m a theatre junkie, so I was in heaven. I chose to see Hair at the Al Hirschfeld Theatre. Hair is a Musical about hippies resisting the draft during the Vietnam War. The best part? Myself and some fellow audience members got to participate on stage with the cast for the final two numbers.
Yeah, I’ve sang and danced on Broadway.
No big deal.