New York City Guide

While I do not live in New York, it is one of my favorite cities to visit. Before every trip, I do loads of research trying to find the coolest new places. I get super bad anxiety that I might miss out on the best meal of my life. I only accept recommendations from people I 100% trust, and even when I get their recs, I check on Open Table, Yelp, & most importantly Instagram. On Instagram, I will look to see if the restaurant has a personal account, after that, I feel like I can get the best vibe for a place by checking for the restaurants Instagram location. By doing this, I can see what the most popular dish is, what the ambiance is like, what the dress attire is, and if its a better lunch or dinner place. 


hotels

Greenwich Hotel
The Ludlow
Nomo Soho
The Bowery

Highline Hotel - Dog friendly
Williamsburg Hotel
1 Hotel Brooklyn

things to do

Boating in Central Park - during the summer you can rent a boat, its 15$ per hour & was the highlight of my trip, it's super fun to do & check off the NY bucket list, bring wine & snacks & play music!! 

Central Park - beautiful to walk through during all seasons. My favorite areas are the Conservatory Water where they have all of the model sailboats out when its sunny (the classic Stuart Little scene is filmed here!) & during the winter there is a pretty big ice rink set up.I also love the Alice in Wonderland statue & John Lennon "strawberry fields" tribute.

Glossier Showroom - take the elevator up to shop all things Glossier. It's right by a good Planet Blue.

Brooklyn Bridge - walk or ride bikes!

Metropolitan Museum - if museums aren't your thing, I still recommend going here to see where the iconic Met Ball is held, or to snap a pic on the steps like Blair & Serena would. 

Museum of Natural History - to be honest, I went here to relive the scenes from Night at the Museum.

Bryant Park - fun place to hang out, go to the Shake Shack here - its the one you will recognize from loads of movies.

Rockefeller Center - you can see live late night shows here, or just walk through and shop merch, & see some of the sound stages!

Top of the Rock - iconic instagram shot of the city skyline - go at sunset! Its gorgeous!

Whitney Museum - all over instagram

Paintbox nails

Jinsoon Nails

The Wing - if you're looking for a place to work, get a membership here.

Royal Palms - shuffleboard

The Occulus - inside the world trade center (there's a full mall below it).

Shopping in Soho - everything from high end to street style is. Go to What Goes Around Comes Around for cool vintage shopping.

The Highline - pretty during spring, summer & fall with all of the flowers blooming. Its an old train track that has been transformed into a beautiful walk through the city. There are chairs to hang out here on a nice summer day. Go downstairs to The Highline - there is tons of good food and a local artist shop with fun art & jewelry.

One World Trade Center - visit the observatory here. I personally have never done this exact tour, but I was lucky enough to visit the Teen Vogue offices in the building and the views are incredible.

Magazine shopping - Mulberry Iconic Magazines, Around the World Inc, Casa Magazines, Bouwerie Iconic Magazines, Magazine Cafe

restaurants

Cotenna - Greenwich Village - tiny little wine & pasta bar, stumbled upon this randomly & had such a killer dinner, it's about a five min walk from the Friends apartment building. Make a reservation.

Rubirosa - Amazing pizza & pasta, get the Vodka pizza sauce or the tie-dye with pesto!

La Esquina - cool Mexican Restaurant. You can either go super casual to the taco stand or make a reservation & go downstairs to the underground sit down restaurant. Get the tortilla soup, it's spicy but my fav, the corn & chicken tacos are amazing.

Gramercy Tavern - By Flatiron Building (Triangular building) by Madison Square Park which has most iconic Shake Shack. Also near Eately.

The Smith - AMAZING Mac & Cheese, (they are famous for it) & the Smores in a jar, one of the best desserts I've had. There's a bunch of locations all over Manhattan.

Mercer Kitchen - really good cocktails & menu all over the board. It's in the Mercer hotel which is celeb central. I'd rec the pizza & burger. 

Cafe Habana - super casual Cuban food. My fav is the chicken quesadilla, Mexican corn, & tostones. They have one in Malibu, California but this one is a little different.

Shake Shack - super casual fast food, but classic & better than in n out.

Motorino - tiny but such good pizzas, locals spot by NYU.

Bar Pitti - Pasta place with outdoor seating, def a see & be seen type of place.

Carbone - Another see & be seen type of place, but a little more private indoors. This is a fancier place but really really really good. Get the spicy rigatoni & the caesar salad. 

Jacks Wife Freda - Greenwich Village - yummy brunch spot.

Otto Enoteca e Pizzeria - right by Washington square park (which is super famous), owned by Mario Batali.

Boathouse in Central Park - Iconic restaurant as seen in loads of movies. My favorite time to go is during the summer when you can watch people riding around in the boats

Bubbys - brunch place, it gets packed but worth it.

Chelsea Market - right by the Highline, some cool restaurants inside & food booths, & then if you go right outside & walk the Highline to the left there are some cool hidden restaurants and food booths as an extension to the Chelsea market that have super nice outdoor seating views. In the market, go to Doughnuttery to make your own mini donuts. 

Eately - A giant market with tons of mini restaurant/food booths set up, super yummy.

Cafe Henrie - Pink tables, cool neon, great brunch place - its blogger heaven.

Chacha Matcha - famous matcha place.

Matchabar - another cool design place.

Happy Bones - cool instagrammable coffee place with a killer design.

By Chloe - cool vegan restaurant very casual.

The Butchers Daughter - cute vegan spot, they have them in LA too.

Pietro Nolita - the most instagrammable restaurant ever - everything is pink!! Really good pastas

Maman - Super instagrammable, small snacks, coffee & food to-go.

Ralph's - Above the Polo Ralph Lauren store for coffee, you've probably seen their neon sign on Instagram.

Pizza Beach - Colorful on the inside, they serve frosรฉ here (frozen rosรฉ), it's like Miami in NY.

Toby's Estate Coffee - all white & gorgeous on the inside.

Cecconis - Dumbo in Brooklyn, gorgeous views & good cocktails

Barbuto - get the bolognese pasta.

Lucali - pizza in Brooklyn that the Beckhams swear by!

Robertas - pizza in Brooklyn

Lilia - incredibly pasta in Brooklyn, make a reservation

Tacombi - Really well designed with good Mexican food.

Speedy Romeo - good classic pizza

Artichoke Basille's - good pizza by the slice

desserts

Emack & Bolios - Multiple locations, it's just a tiny ice cream place but their cones are covered in all sorts of yummy sweets. I got a cone with a Rice Krispy wrapped on it.

Dominique Ansel - Soho - my favorite dessert place in the world. They are the creators of the Cronut, the frozen s'more, & the chocolate chip cookie shot. Cronuts sell out every morning crazy early, but if you go at three they start selling their cookie shot. The line may be crazy long but it's 10000% worth it, the line moves fast & it will be the best thing you will ever eat. In the spring/summer they open their back patio. It's in Soho right by a killer shopping area (Best shopping in Manhattan, there is literally every store you could think of on Broadway. Check out the store &Other stories)

Levain - Upper Westside - Thickest cookies ever, super good, but they only have 3 kinds, & no plain choc chip, only choc chip with walnuts. Levain usually has a pretty long line, depending on time / weather. This place is on everyone's recommendation list, but for a better cookie, go to Dominique Ansel.

Milk Bar - all over manhattan, known for their froyo that tastes like cereal milk, (if you go get it with either sprinkles or chocolate chips added) They are also famous for their birthday cake truffles & cookies. 

Baked By Melissa - My all time fav cupcakes (they are bite sized & so good. I rec the cookie dough ones) This place is also at JFK airport if you miss it in Manhattan.

Laduree - famous for their macaroons, the one in soho is better & conveniently located. You can also have a sit down meal here, in the spring/summer they open their back patio. Pricey place, but iconic.

Insomnia Cookies - Get them delivered to your hotel, first order you get three free cookies, all you pay for is a pint of ice cream.

Magnolia Bakery - Famous from Sex & the city & Gossip Girl. Really good cupcakes but get the Banana Pudding.

Little Cupcake Bakeshop - amazing cakes, cupcakes, bars, & ice cream. Cute neon outside.

Dล - Cookie Dough for all things edible cookie dough.

Black Tap - Famous for their ridiculous milkshakes.

Big Gay Ice Cream - Greenwich village 

Serendipity 3 - Upper Eastside -  right by Dylan's Candy Shop. It's super touristy, but known for their frozen hot chocolate.

Drinks & More

Loopy Doopy Bar - They serve wine with popsicles!

The Blonde - good music, cool neon

The Flowershop - tiny, fun music, no cover, any one can get in.

Kolahouse - as rec'd by WeWoreWhat

Beauty & Essex - see & be seen type of place

The Garrett East - they have the "No bad days neon sign" that you have probably seen a magazine editor post about on Instagram

Mr. Purple - 15th floor, stunning rooftop views, owned by the Rande Gerber Group 

Instagrams to follow when visiting NY

@newforkcity

@infatuation

@infatuation_nyc

@feedyourgirlfriend

@weworewhat

@hungrygrls

@eatingnewyork

@gilliehouston

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