The Ultimate NYC Guide (Part 1): Places to Take Out of Town Guests

As someone who lives in or near New York City, you know where to get the best cup of joe near work, how to score a solid veggie burger, and where to find the more eclectic dining NYC offers.

And yet…inevitably someone visits and, all of a sudden, you blank as to how to show them an “authentic New York City experience”.

Have no fear. Here are some package nights that should appeal to guests of all kinds. More neighborhoods to come soon. Mixing and matching highly recommended.

The Laid-Back Shopper

Start with a bite at Tacombi.  Get the incredible tacos, corn and freshly pressed juice (but skip the guac – they never get it quite right).  Grab a coffee at Happy Bones and wander around Soho, Noho and Nolita for some of the greatest shopping.  Depending on your guest you may want to check out:
  • Adventurers and Sports Fanatics: The Mega REI
  • Makeup Lovers: Bite LipLab for custom lipstick or Rouge for 30-min. makeovers
  • Tailored Suit Junkies: Acustom Apparel with 3D measuring technology
  • The Tech Junkie: Visit the Makerbot Retail Store for some Futuristic Toy Making

End the night with some delicious and super affordable drinks at Botanica or Mother’s Ruin for some casual awesomeness.

The Culture Seeking Foodie

Get lost in China town’s winding streets.  Skip canal street (mostly knock-offs and junk) and tread into the heart of it all where you can find traditional herb shops like LinSister, candy stores like Aji Ichiban, and markets like the Asia Market Corp.

Afterwards,  get  some of the best Dim Sum at Nom Wah Tea Parlor or opt for mouthwatering duck at Peking Duck House.  After dinner, search for the unassuming “Chemist” sign and into Apotheke where the sexy speakeasy serves up prescription cocktails made with ingredients straight from their rooftop herb garden.

Old New York Style Seeker

Go to the Financial District and (weather-permitting) get drinks outside at one of the many places on Stone Street. My personal favorites include wine or whiskey at Vintry or beer at the Growler.  If it’s Happy Hour, make your way to the Dead Rabbit where you can get $1 Oysters and top-notch cocktails in a haunt that boasts “the conviviality of Old New York and the Irish-American tradition.”

Afterwards, walk around Wall Street, view the Stock Exchange and make your way to Battery Park for great views of the Statue of Liberty. If you want a closer look, take a ferry ride tour with a stop to Ellis Island or the Staten Island ferry where you can get great pics of lady liberty for free.Once you have an appetite, there a great number of local eats to choose from. If lighter fare is your style, grab a table at Haru for some fresh maki or just grab a delicious crepe from Crepes Du Nord for some “farm to crepe.” If your group is mainly carnivores, walk yourself to either:

  • Harry’s Cafe for impeccable service, beautiful ambience and a damn good steak. And order the polenta fries. Ridiculous.
  • Delmonico’s for it’s well known prime cut pieces of beef and it’s “innovated creations” such as “Eggs Benedict, Baked Alaska, Lobster Newburg and Chicken A la Keene.”

Exotic People Watcher

Grab brunch at Northern Spy Co. or Prune but try to get there on the earlier side or be prepared to wait awhile for a table.  Take a stroll down St. Marx, through Tompkins Square Park and stop by Nuyorican Poets Cafe for some poetry slam, hip-hop and visual arts performances. If it’s later in the day, head to Cafe Mogador in the East Village for perfectly prepared and priced Moroccan dinner. Don’t miss out on the Roasted Halumi Cheese appetizer and Lamb Tagine.

For drinks, grab a cocktail at either PDT or Death & Co. for a truly fantastic experience.  If beer is more your style, head to d.b.a. where they have over 200 beers to choose from. If that many choices seems overwhelming, then grab a beer at McSorley’s Ale House where you only have 2 choices, light or dark, in NYC’s oldest continuously operated saloon.

Part 2 to come soon for some midtown and uptown fun. Have a suggestion? Feel free to add to the discussion below!

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