New York

August 20, 2012

Here I am, feeling like I just got back to France, and now I’m flying to New York today. Hooray! I can hardly believe my luck. I’ll be there through the week to help host and put on Alt Summit NYC (which is going to be amazing!). The weather will be summery and hot (no surprise), but even in the dog days of August, New York is so appealing to me. You too?

Extra-fun: my French friend Caroline is coming too! She’s never been to New York — never been to America, actually — and she’s over the moon about it. I have meetings and appointments throughout the week, but Caroline will get to play tourist. During the plane ride, we’re going to map out an awesome NYC itinerary. For Caroline, it will include cupcakes because… SHE HAS NEVER HAD ONE.

(Don’t you think that deserved all caps?)

She’s had plenty of chances when she visits Paris, but she wanted to wait until she could have the real thing in America. Isn’t that fantastic? If you were planning a New York itinerary for Caroline, what would you put on your don’t miss list?

Historic photo of Grand Central Station from the NYC Municipal Archives.

P.S. — I have tons of fun posts for this week, including 3 more for today, so definitely stay tuned.

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Nina August 20, 2012 at 6:22 am

Wow, first time in New York will definitely be something to remember! When ever my friends or relatives come to the city for their first time, I suggest they visit some of the “big ones” (Empire State Building, the Met, Central Park), take the subway to Brooklyn and walk back on the bridge just to get a good look at that skyline and then choose a few neighborhoods to dig deeper. Our beloved UWS on top of the list of course!

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2 erinmalia August 20, 2012 at 6:34 am

I love love love the Highline when I was there in April. Such a lovely way to see the city.

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3 rachel August 20, 2012 at 6:36 am

Oh, Gabby — I’m so jealous! I soaked up as much of Alt SLC as I could through the internet, and thought maybe I’d attend Alt NYC as a birthday gift to myself, since I’m only a few hours away… but alas, I neither purchased nor won a ticket. Here’s to living vicariously through others! :-)

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4 Azra August 20, 2012 at 6:43 am

That is great! First time in NYC … she will have so much fun. I think she should see museums, eat, stroll… I mean anything, just being there is so much fun!
Have a wonderful time. :)

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5 Tasha Melita August 20, 2012 at 7:41 am

Living so close to the city I cannot imagine seeing NYC for the first time…overwhelmingly amazing! Enjoy! You will be the perfect tour guide too! Have a great time, weather will be gorgeous all week too:) Have pizza LOL!!!

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6 Sandra August 20, 2012 at 7:49 am

MOMA, Highline, a play or musical on Broadway, walk across Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn Flea, Strand Bookstore…

Soooo much to choose from!

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7 Erin August 20, 2012 at 7:52 am

New York is magical. She’s going to love it!

Have fun this week!

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8 Sonya August 20, 2012 at 7:54 am

What a great friend you are to let her come along and help map out a fantastic itinerary. I can believe that she has never had a cupcake, after all, there are such delicious pastries and treats available in France, however, SHE MUST HAVE ONE. Please document! Have a lovely trip ladies!

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9 The New Diplomats Wife August 20, 2012 at 7:59 am

can’t wait to see you in NYC! For Caroline, make sure that she also gets a NYC hotdog (on the street of course) and a real fountain diet coke on ice, and a peanut butter cup, and a little NYC souvenir from Fish’s Eddy!

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10 mamawelters August 20, 2012 at 8:07 am

This post is so well timed as my husband and I are going to NYC for the first time for our anniversary in October. We’ve travelled all over the world, but have never been to the famed Big Apple. I’ll be monitoring these comments and making a list!

Have a fab trip!

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11 tamara August 20, 2012 at 8:21 am

I agree Highline Park is a must see.

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12 Summer August 20, 2012 at 8:21 am

I’ve never seen anything that deserved caps more than that statement. Have a wonderful time! My boyfriend and I are going to NYC this October, and he’s never been!!! He’s also a cupcake feign, so I’d love to hear what everyone’s favorites are. :)

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13 barchbo August 20, 2012 at 8:33 am

Bon voyage! Have a great trip! I am so excited for Caroline!

For first time visitors, I always suggest the Circle Line if the weather is nice. It’s a great way to see a lot in a relatively short period of time + you get to go out on a boat!

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14 Melissa@Julia's Bookbag August 20, 2012 at 8:58 am

what a fun experience for your friend!! (and you, how fun it will be to watch her!) And I most definitely think that fact more than warranted all caps — I think pretty much anything warrants all caps…:)

Have a lovely time!

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15 Damaris @Kitchen Corners August 20, 2012 at 9:06 am

She should go to the Milk Bar for sure. I plan on hitting up the Milk Bar on Saturday.

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16 Maggie August 20, 2012 at 9:29 am

Perhaps you could plan her itinerary around trying different cupcakes all around the city? Since cupcakes have been very trendy for a few years, all these shops have multiple locations, so you can visit whatever happens to be near her other destinations.

Magnolia: the SATC classic, but a bit over-hyped if you ask me! (Locations: West Village (original), Rock Center, UWS, Bloomie’s)
Butter Lane: VERY buttery! Located in the East Village
Crumbs: 19 locations all over Manhattan, lots of flavors
Baked By Melissa: my very favorite, these are moist, bite-size cupcakes, so you can taste all their fun flavors; 9 locations now open, but the original is in Soho, and it’s just a cute walk up window
Billy’s: tasty cupcakes, but the banana pudding is THE BEST! (Locations: Chelsea, Nolita, Tribeca)
Chelsea Market: well, this is a location, rather than an bakery, but there are several bakeries here (in addition to some healthier fare!), and it’s definitely worth a stop before strolling the Highline. Nothing better than sitting in the park with a sweet treat.

Have a wonderful trip!

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17 Summer August 20, 2012 at 11:38 am

Great tips! Thanks, Maggie!

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18 darci August 20, 2012 at 5:17 pm

Here’s my 2cents. Baked by Melissa are cute and fun. Crumbs used to be my favorite. They are big. My favorite now is def Sprinkles and I really don’t like cupcake cafe, magnolia is just ok.

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19 Crystal August 21, 2012 at 8:34 am

I recently visited NY for the first time and we ate quite a few cupcakes! I would skip Magnolia Bakery, but definitely try Crumbs! I would also highly recommend Sugar Sweet Sunshine for a classic cupcake. It’s a small shop just a few blocks from Katz deli. A perfect dessert after a classic NYC lunch!

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20 Stephanie August 20, 2012 at 9:59 am

I remember my first trip to NYC when I was a teenager and 23 years later it still captivates me. I guess this idea is a bit “touristy” but Times Square at night is exhilarating!!

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21 Vandegee August 20, 2012 at 10:30 am

Lower east side tenement museum!

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22 katharine August 20, 2012 at 11:12 am

she needs to get on the water- the Staten Island ferry has a great view of the Statue of Liberty. My husband and I did the Circle Line boat that goes around Manhattan and loved it. I remember it from doing it as a child and it is still fun and gives you a great sense of the geography of NYC.

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23 CMN August 20, 2012 at 12:00 pm

I would definitely say The Met, MOMA, Kate’s Paperie, and Fish’s Eddy. Times Square after 11:00 pm — definitely!
A carriage ride in Central Park — so quintessentially NYC!
The 9/11 Ground Zero Monument — amazing and moving and lovely

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24 elita August 20, 2012 at 12:56 pm

hooray! and, a preemptive welcome to NYC! enjoy the week. and remember, magnolia is ONLY for banana pudding. :]

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25 Kelly Harp August 20, 2012 at 1:07 pm

ABC Home – i loooooove that store!

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26 Jody August 20, 2012 at 1:56 pm

Broadway, walk the BK bridge, pizza…..CUPCAKES! ;)

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27 Karina Hotard August 20, 2012 at 3:02 pm

chinese food near times square, statue of liberty (of course), central park….

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28 janeannechovy August 20, 2012 at 3:51 pm

Shakespeare in the Park! Into the Woods plays through September 1. Write about it, and I will die of jealousy. :) Also, the Empire State Building, and Ellis Island.

That picture in your post could never be re-created, now that smoking has been banned.

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29 Jeanne August 20, 2012 at 7:10 pm

Lincoln park outdoor concerts: http://www.lincolnsquare.org/pages/SummerConcertSeries/
Dim sum in chinatown at Jing Fong.
Staten Island Ferry
MOMA
Rockefeller Center
The Plaza

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30 insurswebsite.com March 7, 2014 at 6:37 am

I’m not worthy to be in the same forum. ROTFL

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31 Diana August 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm

How did I never know Cupcakes are an American thing?

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32 Amy August 20, 2012 at 7:45 pm

The Museum of Natural History is magical, but so is strolling around the West Village. Harlem history is interesting and no one has mentioned that yet. I think she should spend a day in Central Park.

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33 kateG August 21, 2012 at 11:09 am

Get an unlimited metro pass, choose a few good restos (the momos are good, avoid the tourist traps and anything you can get at home) and then plan away.

For ideas of things to do or see check out http://www.theskint.com/ (free and cheap events listed everyday) or http://www.newyorkology.com/index.php (comprehensive listings of events and museums etc).

There are a lot of foodie walking tours ( http://www.foodsofny.com/ or http://www.bigonion.com/ ) or lots of free audio tours you can find online.

Plan one extravagant night (the opera, a fancy dinner, a rooftop bar etc), avoid those horse drawn carriages (animal cruelty issues) and the pedicabs (way way over priced).

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34 Kelly @ Studio DIY August 21, 2012 at 8:51 pm

Ah! I suppose if I was in Paris and had the option of a cupcake or other French pastry, I’d probably forgo the cupcake too! =) As far as cupcakes in NYC, Baked by Melissa are my personal favorite (and I see they’re a few others too!). Since they’re bite sized, you can sample a whole bunch of flavors. Important in making up for lost cupcake-eating time!!

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