07 March 2008

nyc wishlist

i cannot begin to express my love, my devotion, my passion for the big apple. it's juicy, it's bright, it's full of happiness and people and lights and lovely tall buildings that block the sun from your eyes and channel the breezy wind through it's long streets. i la la la love the fact that my sisters, mom and i are headed there in only 20 days. and i also love the fact that when this future child asks; i will tell my babe, you've been to new york city too, honey. my mom thought that was a satisfactory answer for never taking me to hawaii; outside of the uterus that is. someday my cherub and i will head to nyc together and i'll say, yep, when i was pregnant with you.. we ate cheesecake and cream cheese bagels and hot dogs and saw a show and i bought you newborn booties at Bloomies.

so yes, we're headed to new york city and though i know there is no way i can pack it all in; i want to make a grand ol' list to add to and subtract from and measure up all my favorite new yorkian places for years to come. so i'd love your help. what are your must-sees, your must-eats, your must-dos, your favorite hole in the walls, and tuck-away shops and favorite moments? do tell. add to this wishlist; pretty please.

here is my beginnings.
places i love or have heard of from the apple experts:

  • H&M
  • Hyman Hendler; old fashioned ribbon shop
  • Billy's Bakery / Magnolia's cupcakes
  • Greenwich letterpress shop
  • Bloomingdales
  • Pinkberry; refreshingly light yogurt
  • Forty Carrots; legendary frozen yogurt
  • Serendipity
  • Kate's Paperie
  • Broadway Show
  • Books of Wonder & Cupcake Cafe
  • NY Public Library
  • Bryant Park
  • Anthropologie (Rockefeller Center)
  • The Cloisters
  • The Met Gift Shop
  • Sephora
  • Carnegie Deli
  • Tavern on the Green
  • Dylan's Candy Bar
  • SoHo/Village
  • The MOMA
  • Dean & Deluca
  • American Girl Place
  • The Mysterious Bookstore
  • Pierre Hotel for an afternoon tea party
  • Rizzouli's Bookstore
  • Lenny's for a sandwich & cookie.. (74th & Columbus)
more yummy nyc eats here.
loads of fun tourist ideas on this great post.
image thanks to this great map collection.


KJ said...

Zabars and the deli next door
Pizza--Famous Ray's, Original Ray's, etc.
Broadway, more Broadway
David Letterman (I was in the audience once!)
Central Park
Ground Zero--I was there a year after, and while sad, it also seemed rather full of hope and promise.

mary plus vince said...

I have been lucky enough to go to NYC twice... once when I was in elementary, and the other back in 2005. It was absolutely amazing! Love the city too!

You must see a show while you are there... I recommend Wicked (that is what I saw there) but I here that Legally Blonde and Mary Poppins are amazing too!

There was a bagel store I went to with my friend while we were there, her dad made us bring him home some because he loved them so much. I wish I remembered what it was called, because they were seriously the yummiest bagels I've ever had! I will try to remember what it was called, and if I do I will let you know! :D

I had fun in China Town too, because you get to barter with the salespeople! It was so much fun! (and I got a to-die-for green purse for such a great price!)

I also recommend the Met Gift Shop, so great!

One of my fav things was just walking around the city... seriously, so cool!

Have fun, I am insanely jealous that you are going there so soon! You + the wee babe will LOVE it!

Anonymous said...

Century 21 (not real-estate) BEST DISCOUNT SHOPPING EVER - for designer clothing. http://www.c21stores.com/

Petit Elefant said...

There is the most amazing Indian food in the village called {something like} Ghandi's. The best I've ever eaten. You can't go wrong with Pinkberry either.

allison said...

definately the moma. they have an entire floor dedicated to product design.
the whitney museum. it's sortof little and everchanging.
off-broadway, or better yet off-off-broadway shows in an obscure theatre.
canal street-can't beat the knockoffs.
but my all time favorite moments in new york city are the ones where i realize i'm completely lost. in that you will find your own NYC treasures.
*jealous me

ps-if you're going to do tkts for the shows, go to the south street seaport location. it's so much less crowded, plus you can catch some discount seafood.

P said...

H&H Bagels (the best in town)
Gray's Papaya on 72nd and Broadway (Recession Special - 2 dogs and a papaya drink)
The recently renovated Morgan Library - wonderful lunch spot as well.
The Neue Gallery - and its cafe.
Moto in Williamsburg for its weird and wonderful decor and excellent food.
A walk through Red Hook, Brooklyn to see the waterfront, the gorgeous flowers at Saipua, and the great grub at The Good Fork.
Calypso - for clothing and decor.

Have a wonderful time! I'm looking forward to reading your take on my home town.

Annie said...

I call the apple my original hometown since I was born there while my dad was in grad school. Now I manage to get there a few times a year since I'm fairly close by in Boston.

I would add:
-Pearl River (chinese everything store...like an Asian Target?)
-John's Pizzeria (there's one near times square; perfect for before or after a show)
-the campy (and admittedly can be touristy) Starlight Diner where the waiters sing AND serve
-Fish's Eddy (great dishware, including discontinued and hotel/restaurant extras...it's down kind of near Books of Wonder)
-Max Brenner's chocolateria by Union Square
-I love Ellis Island...great architecture, very moving I think
-Popover Cafe in the upper west side (mmm. just what it sounds like)

Since you'll be with Christie, I'm sure she'll take you to all the great handbag knockoff locations :). Have fun!

Christina said...

I went to NYC when I was about just as far along- I found out it was a girl right before our trip. I hadn't felt tons of movements until we went to see 42nd Street and she kicked the whole way through- a lot. and hard. I knew then that she'd love to dance, and at 3, she sure does. It was a great trip.

Deidra said...

I loved Dylan's Candy bar. I would make a list of things you have to see and things you'd like to see. Hit the must sees, try for the maybes, and leave time for serendipity (and not just the Frrrozen Hot Chocolate).

Unknown said...

ooh, someday i'd love to do that with my mama! what fun! i too love nyc. but i do have to say, tavern on the green was one of my more overrated experiences. might want to skip the high price tag + gaudiness unless you already love it (in which case, oops for opening my big mouth) or feel you can't live without the experience. either way, enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!

EliseBlaha said...

great list..you will love love love the city. when i went i brought a street map from national geographic that i had hung in my room years before. it is now worn and tattered, and it got me everywhere.

how long are you going for?

Sarah said...

Must hit the shake shack for a burger and concrete. Madison Square Park. You'll never regret it.

southern daze said...

My husband and I were there in early January. Here are the highlights from our trip...

The Red Cat
the burger joint (Le Parker Meridien)
Top of the Rock (at sunset)
Anthropologie (Rockefeller Center)
Broadway - Wicked & A Chorus Line

Regardless of what you do and see, you'll have a blast just being there. HAVE FUN!

jordan said...

I don't go to NYC without going to City Bakery and ABC Carpet.

The DeDe said...

Ok, Skip Serendipity(just got shut down for vermin problems!) and substitute Chikalicious(http://www.chikalicious.com/)
You won't regret it!

angela hardison said...

If you like Middle Eastern food, Mamoun's Falafel Restaurant in Greenwich Village is amazing. It kind of looks like a little hole in the wall... but BEST falafels I've ever had - I think about them often :)

melissa deakin said...

Please go to Purl Soho for me and I will live vicariously through you.
How fun!

Jill said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lindsey said...

Grey's Papaya
Ground Zero
David Letterman (so fun- we went on our honeymoon to NYC and we got in on standby)
and on the Food Channel they just rated the best pizza places in the country, and one was in the Bronx. (I think) I am sure it is listed somewhere on their website!

Lindsey said...

Oh, sorry, it is called Di Fara's in BROOKLYN.
1424 Avenue J, Midwood, Brooklyn
It looked fabulous.
Oh, and for sure carnigie deli, and I hope you get the same waitress we got who when we asked for ANYTHING she said, "WE DON'T HAVE THAT HERE!"

Jill said...

ooo I live in NY & I'm loving all of these suggestions too. :)

I would recommend:

the shake shack, already said but worth repeating

Cafe Habana (17 Spring Street/Elizabeth St.
) - the grilled corn is SO good, and you can get it from the take-out side next door

I bet you would enjoy Tender Buttons

if you want to spy some fun over the top interiors:
Charlotte Moss Townhouse

have a great time!

Emily said...

purl soho. Hot chocolate in the back of abc carpet and home. Yoga class at jivamukti yoga. Buttercup bake shop-better than magnolia by far but in a less cute neighborhood-your call. Frick collection. The Met. New york city ballet, american ballet theatre or met opera, if thats your thing. Ralph lauren mansion. Window shopping up Madison. Flea market on 6th and 24th (weekend only). the new museum. Bliss spa. Jersey boys, wicked, or young Frankenstein on broadway. Sea Thai in Williamsburg. Walking up and down Bedford st in williamsburg. Brunch at jane (order the french toast). I've lived here 8 years-these are my favorite things!

Jill said...

oh, and the baked macaroni at The City Bakery is heaven.

Buby + Bleu said...

Go to the H&M at 34th St. The one at 53rd & 5th is a lot smaller and doesn't have maternity. The health dept recently closed landmark dessert place Serendipity. I don't think they've reopened yet. But Cafe Lalo's (spelling?) on the Upper West is where they filmed the rose scene in "You've Got Mail," and it's an awesome alternative. Juniors in Grand Central Station. Gramercy Park Hotel just to walk in and be there... the renovation is incredible! Definitely don't miss Dylan's... you'll love it. For Thai, the best little dive in Manhattan is Pongsri on 47th between Broadway and 8th. The best Chinese is Joe Shanghai near Pearl & Mott in Chinatown. If you like flowers, might want to stop by Chelsea Flower Market, where all the stylists get their flowers for shoots. Oh, and my favorite bar/restaurant is in Chelsea... called SHAG. It's tiny but has the BEST comfort foods like mac & cheese and mini burgers. I hear the drinks are incredible, but I've never been when I wasn't preggers. The walls are covered in shag carpeting... look them up. Have fun! It's my favorite city in the world.

Bree said...

Don't miss Pearl River, a chinese departments store, check out their site before you go...http://www.pearlriver.com/v2/index.html they have amazing things.

Michelle said...

Carnegie Deli, for the enormous sandwiches, amazing cheesecake, and the experience. I once sat right next to this very old man who ate two huge bowls of coleslaw, all the while adding ice from his water glass to it. Fascinating.

Century 21 for sure. It's amazing, and right across from Ground Zero, if you're planning to go there.

Dim Sum in Chinatown on Saturday or Sunday morning. Delicious! Have the steamed cha siu baau--so heavenly.

Magnolia for sure. And a walk around the Village is a great way to spend an afternoon.

Have fun! I'm going in about two weeks and I can't wait. I'll have to write down some of these suggestions for myself!

Travelin'Oma said...

These are fabulous suggestions! I'm so glad to know about Serendipity. We need several more days, I can tell. BTW, you went to Hawaii when you were post womb (4 months old) and you sunbathed naked.

mk said...

A born & raised New Yorker who loves to share off-the-beaten-path shops & restaurants that are not in many guide books. Here are a few of my favorites, by neighborhood:

ABC Carpet & Home, 888 Broadway (between 18th-19th Streets), all 6 floors, has become a destination spot for everyone!

CURSIVE, an independent fine stationery & unique gift store, located on the 1st floor of ABC Carpet. Sorry for the shameless plug as I am the store manager/one of the buyers and love to share and network with my customers.

Le Pain Quotidien (locations throughout NYC including in the back of ABC Carpet & Home) - A Belgian franchise - early morning and late afternoons are the best times for sitting at their long wooden farm tables... lunching on the chicken curry salad with cranberry chutney and a large bowl of cafe au lait.

Michel Cluizel, chocolate shop in ABC - I've heard the Hot Chocolate is to die for!!

A photo of the Flatiron Building at 23rd Street & 5th Ave is must, especially when standing in Madison Park on 23rd Street!

Utowa, 17 West 18th Street (5th/6th Aves) just down the block from City Bakery - exotic flower arrangements and bamboo structures designed by the creative director of Utowa - also seen in Takashimaya

4. SOHO:
Interesting interior design retail spaces: PRADA on Broadway & Prince, LONGCHAMP, Spring Street in Soho

Paul Smith, 142 Greene Street (between Prince & Houston) - newest location

Note: Kate's Paperie closed their flagship location on Broadway/Prince Street. The inventory isn't what it that unique anymore...


John Derian Dry Goods, 6 East 2nd Street (between Bowery & 3rd Ave) - wonderful atmosphere

Matta, 241 Lafayette Street (Soho)- beautiful clothing with fabrics from India

Alexis Bittar, 465 Broome Street (Soho) (Mercer/Greene) - stunning resin jewelry

Pastec, 459 Broome Street, next to Alexis Bittar, largest collection of Mia Zia accessoires) - wonderful loft space on ground floor

Jill Platner Studio, 113 Crosby Street (Houston/Prince) - beautiful organic silver jewelry housed in fantastic large studio space.

Ted Muehling, 27 Howard Street
Hours: Tues-Sat 12-6pm; his collection of jewelry and unique and organic objects - a small gem of a store


- Cooper Hewitt, 91st Street
- Gugghenheim, 89th Street
- Metropolitan Museum, 82nd-85th Streets


10. One of my favorite views of Central Park is standing on the 2nd floor of the Time Warner Building (a mini mall - j.crew, sephora, whole foods in the basement, border's bookstore with a dean & deluca cafe etc...) at Columbus Circle. Take the escalators to the 2nd floor and look out and see the the southwest corner of Central Park and along the east corridor of Central Park South toward the former Plaza Hotel.


Walk down Madison Avenue from the Metropolitan Museum all the way to the New York Public Library at 42nd Street

Bethesda Fountain in Central Park

Bergdorf Goodman & Barney's

Takashimaya, 54th-55th St on 5th Ave - beautiful Japanese dept store

Felissimo, 56th Street (5th/6th Aves)- unique design store

Apple Store - 57th Street & 5th Ave

MUSEUMS on 53rd Street
(5th/6th Avenues)

Museum of Arts & Design (MAD- formerly American Craft Museum) - nice collection of handmade jewelry from U.S. and Abroad

Museum of Modern Art (MOMA)

American Folk Art

Grand Central Terminal, a gorgeous main hall and just down the block from Bryant Park and The New York Public Library

Hable Construction, 117 Perry Street - near Magnolia Bakery on Bleeker Street

Butik, co-owned by Helena Christenson

Community Food & Juice, 112th/113th Streets & Broadway, or Clinton Street Bakery (Lower East Side) - known for its French Toast and Pancakes

'wichcraft - various locations - nice place for delicious sandwiches & soups


I recently ate at Ronnybrook Dairy's cafe inside Chelsea Market, 75 Ninth Ave (15th/16th Streets) Delicious!

Dim Sum Go-Go, 5 East Broadway, we go there for large family dinners and occasionally for delicious dim sum in a modern setting

Note: Tavern on the Green is a NYC main stay however there are plenty of other restaurants that have better food and ambiance such as Union Square Cafe, Fig & Olive, 5 Ninth, Balthazar, Savoy, Red Cat ...

Enjoy your visit!

MK at Cursive

al + sar said...

everything i wanted to suggest is already on your list! go see either wicked, lion king or thoroughly modern millie on broadway..all great shows. ground zero is pretty cool. i might need to give you some mula to get me a purse or two! go to central park and get a hot dog-yum!

im so jealous by the way.

love sar

KR said...

I have yet to go to the Big Apple. I cant wait to see photos from your trip! It sounds absolutely fabulous! :)

Also wanted to let you know that the drawing has been completed on the blog for the grand giveaway!! I am also holding a poll for another prize for the winning name. :) If you have a moment, stop on by and cast your vote!


Alicia said...

Oh I am so jealous! I love love love NYC - my parents live about an hour outside the city & I usually have a moment each week where I wish that I still lived there! I recommend:

- Pearl River - already mentioned but full of wonderful Asian things including some great bebe clothes.
- In addition to Hyman Hendler there is Tinsel Trading, The Store Across the Street and M&J Trimmings all on the same block. Full of lovelies.
- So Good Jewelry - fun cheap jewelry! Cheap as in $20 is the max for anything!
- Cafe Lalo - Where You've Got Mail was filmed with the BEST frozen yogurt. Cash only
- Grand Central - My FAVORITE place in NYC. The ceiling has been restored and is amazing and they have a wonderful market with all sorts of yummy goodies.
- MOMA Gift Shop
- Anyplace downtown where you can buy $5 pashminas
Pain Quotidien - My favorite breakfast spot!

Oh, there's soooo much more. Enjoy!!

Alicia said...

Oh, and Takashimaya on Fifth Avenue. Your budget may not allow for 99% of their offerings but you have to check out the flower shop on the top floor and then make your way down to the tea shop/cafe in the basement. Everything is DIVINE!
And someone else mentioned Michel Cluziel chocolate in ABC Carpet. I work with a partner in Michel Cluziel & even though I'm not a big chocolate fan I can stay that their chocolate in amazing. One little piece is a great way to sustain yourself through an afternoon filled with shopping and exploring.

KYLe said...

If it's cliche to say FAO Schwarz, then sue me!!! I mean if you are going to take your unborn child to NYC without a stop at the coolest toy store .... well, then.... that's just sad.

NY/Marta memory... Remember when we took a endless roll of pictures, only to find out there was no film in the camera?? Times have changed, make sure your memory card has enough space!!

Jessica said...

We just went the beginning of February and had a blast. My personal favorites:

-John's Pizzeria (the one in Greenwich on Bleecker St., better for interesting atmosphere IMO than the Times Square location)
-Brooklyn Bridge
-St. Paul's Chapel (across from WTC grounds)
-Nick's Burgers (Upper West Side, 77th & Broadway)
-Zabar's (also Upper West Side, 81st, I think, and Broadway)
-Queensboro Bridge
-Central Park (I especially liked Strawberry Field, Bow Bridge, and Alice in Wonderland)

Here are the best of our NYC pics :)

Anonymous said...

awesome middle eastern food in brooklyn called SAHARA. yummo
coney island at brighton beach & the boardwalk itself
MEMOS is another awesome middle eastern rest. on kings highway.
5th avenue itself.

Anonymous said...

I have to second these:
ABC Carpet and Home
Cursive {inside ABC}
Tinsel Trading and the Store Across the Street

Also have had a fun dinner with friends at Chez Josephine - on Theater Row more here http://www.chezjosephine.com/

I really really miss the 26th street flea market.

Anonymous said...

Spice Cove for indian food, Red Bamboo for phenomenal Vegan fare, Henri Bendel for the most luxe shopping.

erin wilson said...

I live here and am super excited for your big adventure. Definitely make a stop at the Shake Shack....just the best....get the shack burger, fries, and your fav flavor shake. You won't be sorry!

If you need show choosing help, please ask me questions...I'm an actor!!!!

Anonymous said...

M, don't forget The Strand. http://www.strandbooks.com/

The best lemon ricotta pancakes at Sarabeth's at Central Park South.


cinderlla said...

hi, i love NYC! can anyone tell me a decent Hotel with moderate price to stay, please? ;-)

Bexy said...

century 21
new york public library
china town
the waldorf astoria for (virgin for you) cocktails - very old new york glamour

have fun
from a very jealous english girl

jen v said...

yes i have to agree that Taven on the Green is VERY overrated but do not miss Tinsel Trading, The Store Across the Street and M&J Trimmings.

Jessica said...

P.S. Thanks for linking to my little food blog!

Anonymous said...

Two baby/children's stores to add to your list (both in Soho):

Soho Baby (Elizabeth Street)
Simply Giggles

Have SO much fun!!

homemade by jill said...

Some of these have already been mentioned, but as a current New Yorker, these are my must visits: (and all are food related - oops)

Shake Shack - Madison Square Park (outdoors)

burger joint - this NYC gem is hidden inside le Parker Meridian Hotel (57th st. bet. 6th & 7th ave.). Inside the main lobby you'll see an area that is curtained off - follow the small neon burger sign (and your nose) to one of the best burgers in the city.

The Doughnut Plant - only found in NYC and Tokoyo. Hands down the best doughnuts in the world. get the tres leche doughnut! (379 Grand - bet Essex and Clinton - very near chinatown!)

Last, but not least, walk across the Brooklyn Bridge if you have the time. When you get to the other side, go to Grimaldi's Pizza! (19 Old Fulton St - just under the bridge). While you're over there, get an ice cream cone at the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory - it is just down the street on the pier (looks like a mini lighthouse).

Have fun!!!

p.s. if you plan on attending church while you're here, the chapel that is in the same building as the temple will be closed for renovations as of the march 30th. Try the east side building, union square, or harlem!

Andrea said...

I'm pilfering this post. :) I'm going to NYC in a few weeks, too! I' so excited; I love that city. Thanks for the fabulous ideas!

(Long -time lurker, first-time commenter.)

love.boxes said...

If you go to Zabar's on the upper west side.. don't miss The Buttercup Bake Shop.. it's so you Marta and get a German Chocolate cupcake! Yum!. And, if you are going to Hyman and Hendler.. also visit MJ Trim which is just right around the corner. I go to the Big Apple every autum and it's just one of my favorite places on the planet. :) I wish I could go with you all! Have a great time!

Darleen said...

Lower Manhattan
Century 21--discount designer clothes (right across the street from ground zero)

Purl Soho--lots of fun fabrics then while you are there stop by Pearl River. Eat at Bar 89 in Soho and check out their cool bathrooms. Oh, and Fishs Eddy. Kate's Paperie is down there and Bloomingdales.

My opinion--don't waste your time at Serendipity or Carnegie Deli--it's so overrated. They are rude and charge too much for their food. And it's not even that good.

Don't forget to take a nice walk in Central Park while you stop by the Met.

Decorno said...

Aedes de Venustas

ABC Carpet and Home ****promise me that you will go gere*** it's the best, mos inspiring home furnishings and accessories store in the country

John Derian

The Strand booktore

bloomers shoppe said...

How exciting you are headed to the big apple! I came across your blog from another and could not resist leaving a comment! As all normal people, I love NY :) If you like Italian food (a MUST in NY), visit Carmine's. Delicious. Also, you must hit up a Mr. Frosty truck. When my husband and I were there last summer, we came out from H&M (near St. Patricks Cathedral)and were dying of heat! We stopped at the Mr. Frosty truck and it was perrrfect. I guess right now you won't have a problem with the heat though...temperatures are still low there! Either way, have a blast.

PS- Many say Tavern on the Green is overrated...I say, if you sit on the patio in the evening under all the custom, fabric covered lanterns, it is worth EVERY PENNY. Will go EVERY time I visit the city.

Take Care! Rachel :)

beckie said...

Confession: I didn't read all these comments so I don't know if it was already mentioned but you need to go to the Museum of Modern Art and of course John's Pizza in the village, I think it is actually on the same street as Magnolia but a little east.

Another great book store is Strand Books on the East side.

Anonymous said...

Please, dear M, tell us that you are going to see Lady Liberty. Photos and TV don't do her justice. : )

jt said...

I just got back, and used your comment list as a guide. good stuff! you will also love a little store called
** "area kids", look them up online-they have tons more cute little things in the store, baby yoga, rattles, boutique style clothes.
** shake shack, best hamburger I've ever eaten.
**Fishs Eddy--we spent forever in this great dish store, vintage, farmhouse, fiesta, eclectic stuff.
** Brooklyn Bridge, great photos, we laughed the whole time-very fun.
** Peter Luger steak, be there before 3 for the lunch menu or else it's $40/steak at dinner.
** Century 21 was the best-a tjmaxx like store with higher end clothing-they have maternity I believe.

If you like fabric/sewing, don't miss the garment district, one street is fabric, one street is notions, that was a handy tip I received after I walked back and forth to certain stores.

**Brooklyn general store and
** Purl also had great quilt fabric/knitting supplies.

loved the corn at Cafe Habana (can't beat $1.90 either for a great snack)
Thai Angel had yummy lunch specials.

Have fun!

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