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Returning visitors to New York often remark “The city has changed” No matter what you’re perspective this is an absolute! It is this one consistent aspect that New Yorker's depend on. The vertical city exudes energy from the constant flow of people who work and play harder then most. No other place posses the diversity in the multitudes of ethnic groups that are seen here. Fashion, finance, art, architecture, cuisine, music and nightlife is updated daily by an array of talented individuals that charge forth to compete in making their mark.

- Richard Beck, President & CEO

Activities Excursions Dining Shopping Resources Nightlife  

Museums of Lower Manhattan
Get off the beaten path and visit some of these interesting museums:
Jewish Heritage
New York City Fire Museum
Museum of American Financial History
National Museum of the American Indian
New York City Police Museum
South Street Seaport

The Frick Collection
1 East 70th Street (corner of 5th Ave)
Tel. 212.288.0700
Henry Clay Frick lived in one of Manhattan's most magnifient mansions. When he died he bequeathed the entire home and it's priceless art collection to the city of New York. Everything from its grand rooms with their exquisite decor of the period to the lush gardens can be viewed.

American Museum of Natural History
Central Park West & 79th Street
Tel. 212.769.5100
This vast and extensive museum is one that you can easily spend a day at. The permanent exhibits which are outstanding are accompanied by seasonal special shows that even impresses jaded New Yorkers. Bring the kids! They'll never forget it and neither will you.

The Metropolitan Opera
Lincoln Center
"The Metropolitan Opera is a vibrant home for the most creative and talented artists working in the multidisciplinary field of opera, including singers, conductors, composers, orchestra musicians, stage directors, designers, visual artists, choreographers, and dancers from around the world. Known as a venue for the world’s great voices for well over a century, since 1976 the Met has been under the musical direction of James Levine, who has created one of opera’s finest orchestras and choruses. Peter Gelb, the Met’s general manager, has embarked on a program to significantly increase the number of new productions, which will feature the Met debuts of the world’s most imaginative directors, to further elevate the company’s theatrical standards and to secure increased commitments from the world’s greatest singers." It's no wonder that more than 800,000 people attend each season.

New York Public Library (Room 117)
The Lionel Pincus and Princess Firyal Map Division Fifth Avenue (between 40th & 42nd Streets)

This spectacular 7000-square-foot space in the New York Public Library is home to the largest map collection of any public library in the world. This beautiful room, a hidden treasure in Manhattan, houses maps that show how human beings from one era to another across different cultures come to an understanding of themselves and the universe. There are almost 420,000 maps, atlases and cartographic books accessable from wired tables for laptop plugins. Few New Yorkers even know about this room.

Central Park Zoo
64th Street at Fifth Avenue
Tel. 212.439.6500
Not just for kids, this cageless animal park is a treat in any weather, and in any season. Take a break from Fifth Ave's bustle and watch the snow monkeys, polar bears, and sea lions play in winter. Inside, roam a tropical paradise filled with birds and other critters. The penguins have their own temperature-controlled space where you can enjoy their antics on land and underwater.

Chelsea Piers
23rd Street and the West Side Highway
Tel. 212.336.6666
1.7 million-square-foot Chelsea Piers has come a long way from its historic beginning in 1910 as the launching point for such ocean liners as the Lusitania. Today it’s the place to play for New Yorkers and tourists alike, offering year-round ice skating, bowling, golf, rock climbing, sailing, kayaking and more. There’s even a spa to rejuvenate after visitors have tired themselves out.

Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 Fifth Avenue (82nd Street)
Tel. 212.535.7710
The "Met" is one of the great museums of the world. Its collections are varied and always impressive, not only because of their content but in the way they are presented. Spending time in this museum is probably one of the grandest ways to enjoy the civilized city of New York.

New York Waterway
Pershing Road
Weehawkin, New Jersey
Tel. 201 902 8711
If you're traveling New York City in the summer, this company has leisurely day cruises on the Hudson River. Shortly after leaving one of Manhattan's west-side piers, you'll get an unlikely perspective of New York City from the river known as "America's Rhine."

Liberty Helicopter Sightseeing Tours
One Block North of VIP Heliport West 30th Street & 12th Ave
Tel. 800-542-9933
Take an unique 15 minute tour that flies OVER Central Park, Empire State Building, United Nations, and around the Statue of Liberty, so close you can can almost reach out and touch her. Plus many more captivating sights throughout Manhattan.

The Bronx Zoo
2300 South Blvd
The Bronx Zoo is of the world's largest metropolitan zoos, with some 4,000 animals representing about 650 species from around the world. If you've never been the short trip from Manhattan is easy and well worth the time.

New York Botanical Gardens
2900 Southern Blvd.
Bronx, New York
Tel. 718.817.8700
Just 20 minutes by train from Manhattan's Grand Central Station lies one of the the worlds most famous public gardens.  You will not believe how close you are to New York City.  If you're into horticulture (the collection of 100 year old conifers is amazing) this is a must and if your not you'll still be super impressed.  It's a wonderful quick respite from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Eataly (moderate $)
200 Fifth Avenue (Between 23rd & 24th Street)
Tel. 212.229.2560
This food hall is 42,500 square feet and contains every aspect of Italian cuisine. Italy has nothing like this. 
From its Pizzeria Rossopomodoro—run by two men from Naples—down to the ovens used to prepare the foods (the Hall’s two wood-fired pizza ovens were imported from Italy). Other foodie-pleasing features include Lidia Bastianich’s on-site cooking school, “La Scuola,” a Lavazza coffee shop that opens at 7am for early birds, a gelateria and a paninoteca. Michael Toscano’s swanky Italian steakhouse, Il Manzo, is the only one of Eataly’s seven restaurants to accept reservations.  One place to shop for Italian delicacies is no better anywhere (in the world)

Spice Market
403 West 13th Street
Tel. 212.675.2322
Famed chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Asian inspired New York restaurant makes you feel as you've been beamed to Asia, at least Hollywood's version of,  No matter, the restaurant is beautiful and so is the food and people watching.  Watch the You tube video clip above and you'll get the general idea.

Le Philosophe (Moderate $)
55 Bond Street (East Village)
Tel. 212.388.0038
Just north of Soho in the East Village is a very cool French restarurant.  Most of the menu is based on classic French dishes but with a more modern take.  Its really good and it's being compared to, now impossible to get a reservation at "Chateaubriand" in Paris.  The attractive crowd seems to be young foodies in the know. 

Benoit (moderate $)
60 West 55th Street
Tel. 646.943.7376
French Bistro or New York comfort food as we call it here! If you like French onion soup, escargot or roast chicken as good as in Paris then make sure to head to this mid-town very chic brasserie. Another Alain Ducasse hit! Manager, Leticia Pinson.

Riverpark (moderate $)
450 East 29th Street (south of midtown on the East River)
Tel. 212. 729.9770
Dining here feels a bit like London on the Thames, except here you face the East river and the views from this vantage point are worth the trip to get here. You see the curve of the river, the United Nations and the best view ever of the 59th Street bridge.  All the new high rise apartments on the Queens side give it even more sparkle.  The restaurant is contemporary with high ceilings and lots of glass. The food is quite good and moderately priced.  During the warmer months there's outdoor seating.  The crowd is New York sophisticated with some Brits mulling about.

Marea (very expensive $)
240 Central Park South
Tel. 212.582.5100
The location (on Central Park) and ambiance is wonderful.  The  Italian food subllime. If you ever had a thought that there was a recession in New York this place will dispell it immediately along with the emptying of your wallet. 

Masa (very expensive $)
10 Columbus Circle (Time Warner Center)
Tel. 212.823.9800
Pristine plates of sushi and sashimi approach gallery presentation at this Zen-like sanctuary next to Central Park. New Yorkers refresh and re-attune themselves to the world at this restaurant where every cup, plate bowl and soft wooden piece of furniture is a perfect representation of shibui-- simple, subtle, unobtrusive beauty.

Babbo (expensive $)
110 Waverly Place
Tel. 212.777.0303
With a list of critical accolades as long is its lines to get in, Babbo is the place to dine in New York for tourists and locals alike. Delicious ingredients are both fresh and bold, innovative and comforting. Sit back and enjoy rich flavors and knowledgeable, friendly service.

Daniel (very expensive $)
60 East 65th Street
Tel. 212.288.0033
Food is a celebration of life. No American chef is bent on making sure this celebration is always unique and original more than Daniel Boulud. The fusion cuisine concept reaches its apex here. Choose from a seasonal menu fraught with delicious seafood in the summer, and hearty fare in the winter. Daniel is walking distance from the finest hotels in the city.

The Modern (expensive $)
9 West 53rd Street (Museum of Modern Art)
Tel. 212.333.1220
When you’re done feasting your eyes on the best modern art in the world, feast on delectable dishes at The Modern, located at the Museum of Modern Art. This is not your typical museum café. Chef Gabriel Kreuther digs into his Alsatian roots for inspiration with appetizers like buckwheat soup with aged goat cheese and boskop apple ravioli as well as entrees like spice-crusted sturgeon braised in pink grapefruit juice with caramelized endive and fennel. The Modern is a creative, seafood-loving Epicurean’s delight.

A Voce (moderate $)
41 Madison Avenue
Tel. 212.545.8555
Andrew Carmellini, who developed a following as the surrogate head chef at the French restaurant Boulud, debuts independently with A Voce, which means “word of mouth” in Italian. Leather swivel chairs and tabletops provide a stylish yet unpretentious setting for his hearty and irresistible dishes. Duck is utilized far more than in standard Italian fare, with duck-foie gras-pork meatballs on the appetizer list, for example. 2nd location on Columbus Circle in Time Warner Center. 

Le Bernardin (very expensive $)
155 W. 51st St.between Sixth and Seventh Aves.
Tel. 212.554.1515
"Le Bernardin" noun. French for "perfection." There is nothing like Le Bernardin. Casually elegant, impeccable service. No wonder it has recently been awarded the Michelin Guide's coveted 3-stars. It has maintained its international acclaim as one of the world's top seafood restaurants. Owner/Chef Eric Ripert continues to set unsurpassed standards and unlike other Hollywood-ized chefs, he tends to stay in his kitchen and, you know...cook.

Buddakan (moderate $)
75 9th Avenue
Tel. 212.989.6699
The concept of huge space is certainly not new, but the impact is never-the-less still impressive, even without taking into account the reputed $13,000,000 cost. This 16,000-square-foot room designed by world-famous Christian Liaigre blurs the line between restaurant and theater, providing a place to simultaneously party, dine and drink. The later your reservation, the more hip this downtown locale will be.

Oceana (expensive $)
55 East 54th Street
Tel. 212.759.5941
Oceana has recieved 3 stars from New York Times. This busy midtown location is great and while some say it is very staid and quiet others go their exactly for that. The decor is suppose to transport you to an ocean-liner. How cool!

Sushi Yasuda (expensive $)
204 East 43rd Street (between 2nd and 3rd Ave)
Tel: 212.972.1001
This place is not for posers. Number 2 in Zagat's Top Food Spot in New, Sushi Yasuda is the highest-ranking Japanese restaurant in the history of the NYC survey. The fish is first-rate and there are few other places in the city where you can find the sheer variety of fish that Sushi Yasuda offers. Service is very attentive, pleasant and helpful. The sushi list highlights chef recommendations, so even if you don't sit at a table, you can benefit from Yasuda's suggestions. Each piece is more delicious than the last.

Sant Ambroeus (moderate $)
259 W. 4th St. at Perry St.
Tel. 212.604.9254
This Milanese style espresso bar is a gelato shop, pastries counter, breakfast meeting spot and posh, new celeb hangout and comfortable dining room all in one.

Here are New Times Food Critic Frank Bruni's choice of the most attractive restaurants in New York. Click on the links to see if you agree or not!

Aedes de Venustas
9 Christopher Street (Greenwich Village)
Tel. 212.206.8674
This store may just lure you back into the world of candles and home fragrances. Check out their signature, eponymous candle that everyone seems to love. It is said that one of the things that make a women happy is finding their scent.  Problem is it can take half a lifetime.  You can certainly cut down on that time by coming here!

Mokuba New York
137 West 38th Street
Tel.  212.869.8900
This Japanese ribbon emporium is a one of kind find in Manhattan. Astonishingly organized you'll find some 50,000 types of ribbon, trim, lace in every imaginable width and color. For interior decorators, dress makers or just anyone looking for special gift wrapping it's the place to go.   

Turnbull & Asser
42 East 57th Street
Tel. 212.752.5700
One of London's more famous mens store has an impressive shop in Manhattan.  For custorm shirts contact Felix Berrios and for suits, Louis Verde.

Off Broadway Boutique
139 West 72nd Street
Tel. 212.724.6713
Owner, Lynn Dell Cohen says her boutique supplies clothes for women who "dress for the theatre of their lives"  Here you'll find things like silk caftans and leopard print turbans. Sounds crazy but customers from around the world having been coming here for 50 years.

Jacques Torres Chocolate Haven
350 Hudson Street (King Street)
Tel. 212.414.2462
Paris has La Maison du Chocolate. London has Charbonnel et Walker. In New York we have Jacques Torres. This shop is not only a haven for the best chocolates in New York, but also a place to watch the production which is visible from the street. Seasoned New Yorkers know Jacques's genius from when he was pastry chef at the legendary Le Cirque restraurant; now Jacques is Mr. Chocolate.

Diane Von Furstenberg
444 West 14th Street
Fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg rocketed to fame and fortune in the early 1970s with her jersey wrap dress. It's back, and so is she, impressing a new generation with simple elegance.

Barney's NYC
660 Madison Avenue @ 61st
Tel. 212.826.8900
Barney's New York is taste, luxury, and humor.  A fashion mecca and celebrity hangout since 1923, the store is an emporium of style and gorgeous product. When visiting the store, schedule an appointment with a personal shopper for the ultimate one-on-one wardrobe consultation. Their complimentary personal shopping service is designed to pamper you.  They'll guide you through the latest in European and American collections. To schedule an appointment please call: Women’s personal shopper: Domenica Ellison 212.833.2535 ([email protected])

Bergdorf Goodman
754 5th Avenue @ 58th Street
Bergdorf Goodman offers a wide selection of furs and clothing for both men and women. It is a museum of haute couture. They cater to a generally conservative and very sophisticated clientele. Located in the heart of the midtown tourist and shopping district, the store is a block away from the Trump Tower shopping center and the world famous Plaza Hotel.

Stella McCartney
429 W. 14th St. nr. Ninth Ave.
Tel. 212.255.1556
McCartney's line blends frilly elements like pastel silks and ribbons with street-worthy rocker accents, like slasher-tees and industrial zippers. All clothes are animal-free, including the shoes, which are outfitted from a leather-like plant derivative.

Ralph Lauren
867 Madison Ave @ 72nd Street
Tel. 212.606.2100
Ralph Lauren's casual preppy styles embody the spirit of American aristocracy. For his Spring collection, he has again chosen Polo to reflect the hertiage looks of Americana.  Ralph Lauren’s Madison Avenue flagship is the prototype for all the other Lauren boutiques and Fall/winter and spring/summer sales are usually held twice a year.

430 W. 14th St., nr. Washington St.
Tel. 212.929.1244
If there is a store that screams Manhattan youthful chic, then its Scoop. Self-proclaimed "The Ultimate Closet," Scoop is located in classically trendy West Village. The boutique is all about the sexy denim, trendy skirts and gold stilettos. They love designer brands as much as you do. Expect to find the captains: Michael Kors, Marc Jacobs, Alice+Olivia,etc. THE place for women's jeans.

449 West 14th Street nr. 10th Ave
Tel. 212.206.1272
A swank mini-department store in the Meatpacking district. Complete with a spinning DJ and minimal harrassing sales people, Jeffrey's combines all of your favorite luxury brands in a much more trendily luxurious environment.

Everyone knows Manhattan's fantastic Central Park. However the park is so vast that it has it's own special gardens within. One is named after William Shakespeare and here is the link and also more links to other lesser known but special Manhattan parks.

Babysitters’ Guild
60 East 42nd Street
Tel. 212.682.0227
Licensed, bonded, and in business over 50 years, New York babysitting service is a great resource. The cost is reasonable, is based on age and number of children and includes a four-hour minimum plus travel costs. An additional charge finds you a babysitter fluent in one of 16 different languages or one with a nursing background. The service will try to accommodate same-day requests, but to be on the safe side, call this busy Manhattan babysitting service a day in advance. They also accept travelers’ checks.

Elegant Tightwad Shopping Excursions
Tel. 631.841.2111, 800.808.4614
Join Pamela Parisi to shop private showrooms and the hottest sample sales for current season designer duds at wholesale prices and below. Learn her tactics for getting the best for less. Consignment tours, accessory tours and personal couture showroom shopping available too.

This Internet city guide is fast becoming the New Yorker's online bible and includes Art & Entertainment, Food & Wine, General Info, Leisure & Sports, Services, and Shopping. Subscribe to updates so you'll never be out of the loop on Manhattan happenings.

Discover New York
60 East 42nd Street 
Tel. 212.370.1463
Kitt Garrett, Founder & CEO of New York, is not only our Virtuoso partner but our recommended travel desk for New York City. Custom designed your trip to New York City….starting with just two people! Tell Kit your budget and she’ll create a package that is custom designed for each couple to include: transfers, welcome gifts, tickets to sold out shows with backstage access with a cast member to see the wigs, costumes and props and walk across the stage, dinner in the hot restaurants with meet the chef opportunities and a special behind the scene access to their choice of activity.

New York Times Insider Guide
Everything from events to restaurants and apps that can be downloaded to your iphone

Boom Boom Room
848 Washington St.
Tel 212.645.4646
This highpowered bar and club is everyone's favorite and very difficult to gain access to.  Once your in you won't be dissappointed.  The veiws are drop dead!  A cross between New York and a little like Shanghai.  Expensive but worth it!  Oh yes, officially it's the top of the Standard Hotel on the HIghline but everyone call it the Boom Boom Room.       

113 St. Marks
Tel. 212.614.0386
This is the place for cocktails that are the best!  Jim Meehan's team of mixologists/bartenders are always inventing new and improving standards. Look for a hot dog place at this address and then enter the phone booth on the left. Pickup the phone and wait to be let in. 

Pacha  NYC
618 West 46th Street
Tel. 212.209.7500
Manhattan's newest mega dance club has opened. This 30,000-square-foot venue, spread over four floors, is a New York offshoot of a European night club chain. There are VIP rooms off of VIP rooms here. Table service is $150 per person.

The Box
189 Chrystie St
212 982-9301
THE BOX is a new destination on the Lower East Side for fine dining and theater. One of New York’s most difficult doors to crack, but if you get in you’ll be guaranteed a great time.

Open House
244 East Houston Street
Tel. 212.982.3532

Open House is tucked away behind a weathered wood façade. Nightlife guru Steve Lewis designed the venue to create an elegant setting in New York's East Village neighborhood. A columnist for Blackbook, Lewis also designed Marquee and The Darby and formerly managed the Tunnel and Limelight. David Davis was also commissioned to assist with the art installation of the drawers. Fashionably worn antique furnishings intermingle with chic modern accents, creating a luxurious ambiance.With innovative interiors, skilled DJs and expert mixologists ZARKO. Friday night is famed "Lady Fag" night and it's always sold out.  When the hidden "speak easy" which is a bar within in a bar opens (always at the discretion of the managment and never anounced in advance) and if you're lucky enoough to get in  then you'll experience the perfect underground NYC party you only read about.

289 Tenth Avenue (Between 26th & 27th St.)
Tel. 646.473.0202
Fine interiors and a consistently great crowd make it difficult to get in on occasion, but the steady, sophisticated music makes it worth a try. Whether you're dancing or watching you'll spend a memorable night at this high-octane, elite New Yorker hangout.

Les Scandal Cabaret
19 West 24th St. (between 5th & 6h Avenue)
Tel. 212.388.2988
Indulge your passions for the bizarre and risqué. This cabaret features classic burlesque, torch-singing fan dancers and even sword swallowers. Provocative performance art will stop you in your tracks. Reservations absolutely necessary.

The Raven
55 Gansevoort Street (Near Ninth Avenue)
Tel. 646.561.3931
The gentrification of the meatpacking district has changed the hood drastically. Gone is the seamy side that attracted uptown types looking for the slease.  The Raven is trying though and the underground lounge still has mirrors dusted with words cut from faux cocaine and a skull made with condom wrappers. Red lightling, low ceilings and waitresses clad in black leather suggest what it once was, a sex den.        

The Boiler Room
86 East 4th Street (East Village)
This not fancy 26 year old east village alternative Gay bar is always popular. Great place to start the evening and everyone's down to earth and friendly.

Atlan Social Club
753 Ninth Avenye (Between 50th & 51st)
Tel. 212.262.8527
This Hell's kitchen Gay club is sexy, masculine and a little rough (that's what makes it so popular).  Wallpaper from the 1920's, Chesterfield couches and bodybuilder magazines lying about is the ambiannce that the locals love.