I’ve been to New York twice, the last time (I just checked) 3 years ago. Apparently time really flies, it feels like only a few months! Anyway, I didn’t love New York. There, I said it. Don’t get me wrong, I liked it, it’s definitely an intriguing city with a lot of interesting things to do, but somehow, New York and me, we just didn’t click. Maybe my expectations were too high, or I visited the wrong places, or maybe I’m just too spoiled.
However, there were a few things in New York even I loved:
1. The modern art museums and galleries, and there are a lot! Of course I just had to visit the MoMA and the Guggenheim, but I saw some other very interesting exhibitions too. When it gets to modern art, New York has something to offer to everyone.
2. Nolita (NOrth of Littla ITAly) is my favourite neighbourhood in New York. Loads of cute little shops and a cupcake bakery, I don’t need anything else to make me happy for at least one day :) Unfortunately, inbetween all the shopping and cupcakes tasting, I forgot to take pictures of the area.
3. Chelsea Market was a discovery and looking back I wish we ate there a lot more. We were lucky enough to stay in a hotel just opposite the market, so we popped in quite a few times. The fact that there was an Anthropologie shop in it didn’t hurt either. By the way, Chelsea Market is not strictly speaking a market, it’s a building with some trendy little shops (most of them selling food) and delicious restaurants in it. It’s basically a sort of indoor food hall. And they hold exhibitions and sometimes even concerts. So there’s a bit of everything :)
4. On our second night in New York we took an evening cruise on the Hudson River and it was simply amazing. We started when it was still light and came back in the darkness. Inbetween we saw the sky turning yellow, orange and red behind Brooklyn Bridge and around the Statue of Liberty, and we saw all the skyscrapers of Manhattan switching on their tiny teeny little lights, one after the other. And as if this all didn’t look magic enough, suddenly there were lightning bolts and wind gusts, before it finally started to rain just a few minutes before we were back in the port. I doubt I will ever forget that cruise.
5. But the biggest surprise in the Big Apple was the High Line, the old elevated train tracks that were transformed into a park. I absolutely loved walking on it, looking down on the street and contemplating the city from above. And the art, just wow! And all the awesome places to relax. I would go to New York again just to walk the High Line once more!
There you go, those were my five New York highlights. A special mention has to go out to the Dream Downtown, our hotel in Manhattan. We got to book it at a very special rate on booking and it was a truly unique experience. I will never forget the moment we walked to the reception for the first time: we had just arrived from Vancouver, we were really tired and casually dressed, wearing our backpacks and with the suitcases in our hands. It was already dark outside, the taxi dropped us off on the other side of the street and in we walk, and well, never in my life have I felt so underdressed! All around us just hip people, girls in high heels and short skirts, young men with fancy cocktails in their hands and a DJ playing the latest dance hits… all this in the hotel lobby! And let’s not forget the swimming pool in the inner court with the see through holes in the reception area, or the rooftop bar with the spectacular view of the Empire State Building. I would definitely sleep there again.