As part of our adventure to the US, we decided to spend 48 hours in New York City! We’ve both visited before and so we knew it would be the perfect place to put us in the festive mood! We’ve also experienced the obvious tourist sites on our previous visits and so this blog covers some of the lesser known sites of NYC.
The first thing we did when we arrived in the city was head to the Drybar in Tribeca for a blow-dry (priorities, we know). This seemed like a good idea at the time of booking, but on the day it was torrential wind and rain. Not even the sturdiest of blow drys could withstand this weather. Despite this, it was still a lovely hour spent sipping cocktails and watching Christmas films, and we left with very bouncy, rather fabulous, hair.
We decided to stay at The Bowery Hotel on the Lower East side. This is an amazing boutique hotel, which we’ll be dedicating a whole blog post to in the next few days. It’s a wonderful hotel if you want a quality place to rest your weary head, in a quieter and less crowded part of town. When we got to our room we were greeted with a very sweet card from the hotel, a bottle of wine and free Bowery Bear! We were jumping around like little children and are still fighting over custody of this cute bear. Once we had calmed down from all the excitement, we grabbed some lunch at their restaurant, Gemma. The food here is delicious and it has a cosy, bistro feel. Another great place to eat if you’re in this part of the city.
Once we had filled our bellies with yummy pizza, our next stop was Chelsea Market, which is one of our favourite places in NYC. We spent a good few hours having a wander around the shops and buying some lovely gifts for Christmas. We’d really recommend Chelsea Market for some more quirky gifts, especially food related presents. There are also some great smaller places to eat or grab a drink, alongside bigger stores like Anthropologie.
Our first stop of the evening was to meet lovely fellow travel blogger Anna, who runs The Blonde Banana blog. It was so great to meet another blogger and to share our tips and stories. We’ve found that the world of travel blogging is a very friendly one, and we’re so happy to have met fellow bloggers, like Anna, through it.
Whilst Laura loves the more quirky and quieter parts of NYC, I am happiest in the more glitzy parts of the city. So, after we said our goodbyes to Anna and before I burst with anticipation, we caught a late night taxi up to Times Square to absorb all the Christmas goodness! Stepping out into midtown at Christmas time is an overwhelming experience. For some, this area of town is hell: Christmas music blaring, giant decorations, excited crowds and blinding Christmas lights. For us, it was Christmas heaven! We headed straight to the Rockefeller to see the Christmas Tree and iceskating rink, before taking in the Christmas window display at Saks, which was magical. We also visited Times Square, armed with a GoPro stick, and tried to ignore the pointing and laughing as we did a little 360 video of all of the bright lights!
After catching up on some sleep, in our giant bed at The Bowery, our final day in NYC started with us heading to Valley Nails to get some more pampering. If you love nail art and are looking to get some ‘special’ nails whilst in NYC, you should visit this place. We went all out and got the full Christmas works: snowmen, santa, christmas trees, you name it. Our finger nails are currently tiny pieces of art!
Armed now with very bouncy hair and glitzy nails, we did some shopping on Spring Street, in Soho. This is another great place of the city to go to if you’re looking to find more boutique and individual stores rather than the big stores of mid town. We also treated ourselves to a huge lunch at Burger & Barrel (thanks to our very special Burger Map from Herb Lester!) before facing the snow and and wind to head uptown again to visit 5th Avenue and FAO Schwarz, home of the piano from the film ‘Big’. To say this part of town is crowded, would be an understatement, but there is an amazing Christmas spirit about the place and the decorations and lights are mesmerising. It was a great way to finish our world wind tour of the city.
Shattered, weary and laden down with shopping, we got back on our train to DC with amazing NYC memories. This is a city you can never grow tired of, however many times you visit. NYC, we love you!