ADVERTORIAL • January 2022
Now, more than ever, it’s time for New York City. From Times Square to the top of the Empire State Building, it’s open for business – and pleasure – and can’t wait to welcome visitors back. Local writer Sunshine Flint whisks us through the British Airways Holidays hotels that top her list, plus a fabulous first- and second-timer guide...
Neighbourhood: Just steps from Herald Square, home to the famous Macy’s department store and the Empire State Building, this hotel is also close to most major subway lines and a ten-minute walk from Times Square and the Theater District.
Room to spare: White marble bathrooms, high ceilings, solid oak beds and dressers custom-made by Amish and Mennonite craftspeople in Ohio make its rooms a calm contrast to the frenetic world outside.
What’s for dinner: In the hotel, it’s a juicy, oversized craft burger and an over-the-top milkshake at the Black Tap flagship restaurant. Outside, the world is your oyster (including great places to have oysters), but just two blocks over are Koreatown restaurants for authentic bibimbap, sundubu jjigae and DIY Korean BBQ.
Selfie spot: On the 12th floor, the Lookup rooftop bar and lounge (pictured above) has views of the Empire State Building and across Midtown West. The expansive bar has plenty of seating, while tables for two and benches are spaced out on the terrace. A sign in neon script on a background of greenery exhorts guests to ‘Look up’.
Best views: There’s really not a bad view from anywhere in this West Soho hotel, but the western-facing rooms have sweeping panoramas up and down the Hudson River of the new World Trade Center and Little Island, the Heatherwick-designed park built out over the river.
Secret perk: No one expects an outdoor heated pool seven storeys above the street, but that’s what the Terrace on 7 offers, along with private cabanas and the indoor-outdoor El Ta’Koy restaurant and lounge, open seasonally. For more pampering, the Babor Signature Spa has a Turkish hammam and a salt inhalation room, along with steam, sauna and body treatments.
On the menu: Australian chef Shaun Hergatt’s Vestry is the best kind of hotel restaurant – destination dining (awarded a Michelin star in 2021) that SoHo, West Village and Tribeca locals flock to for a Japanese-influenced menu that focuses on fish and seafood, plus small plates.
Historic nightlife: The hotel’s Mezzanine is a relaxing spot for a craft cocktail, and the chic SoHo bars and Tribeca clubs are just a few minutes’ walk away. For a very old New York City experience, stop in for a pint or two at the 1817 Ear Inn, which has served food and drink through the Civil War, Prohibition, September 11 and the Covid-19 pandemic.
Now you know where you’re going, it’s time to plan that all-important itinerary. Luckily, our local Club correspondent knows all the finest spots for first-time visitors and old pros alike.
The great outdoors
First-timers: New York newbies will want to head to the green heart of the city, Central Park, where Midtown skyscrapers look their towering best from the Sheep Meadow, and selfie central awaits on the Bow Bridge.
Second-timers: Walk across the Brooklyn Bridge to Brooklyn Bridge Park (pictured below) for eye-popping views of lower Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty, plus six piers of green space that offer everything from kayaking in the East River to roller skating.
First-timers: Head straight to the Museum of Modern Art, which recently expanded in size, to see all the top hits: Starry Night, Water Lilies, The Persistence of Memory, Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, Christina’s World, plus Kahlo, Klein, De Kooning and so much more.
Second-timers: The galleries in West Chelsea? The Frick Madison? The world’s greatest museum store inside the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum? Yes, yes, and yes. Plus book yourself tickets to the 8pm show at the Village Vanguard, Greenwich Village’s nearly 100-year-old jazz club.
First-timers: You’re here for some classic New York pizza, purchased by the slice from a roadside vendor and eaten held in your hand, New York style. Or prove your tourist credentials at Katz’s, home to legendary pastrami sandwiches.
Second-timers: Time to explore. Head up to Harlem for mac and greens at Red Rooster, down to Chinatown for Shanghai soup dumplings at Nom Wah Tea Parlor, over to Williamsburg for a dry-aged Tomahawk at St Anselm, or to Bushwick for a Bee Sting pizza at Roberta’s (pictured above).
To discover all the reasons to book your next trip with British Airways Holidays, click here