My friend Marion is taking her 10-year old grand-daughter to New York City this month. Because I had such a wonderful time helping my sister Deborah plan her NYC trip last year (she took two granddaughters)...I sent this email, with some links, for Marion. And it occurred to me that YOU SHOULD GO, TOO...
In my order of priority – here are the things you MUST do in New York City:
The American Girl Store – EAT A MEAL HERE. They have sessions all day long -- and you need to make a reservation. I recommend dinner. There are two dinner sessions. 5:30 and 7:30. For $26, you get a lovely meal, created specifically for children, beautifully presented, in a stunning dining room, designed JUST FOR YOUR LITTLE GIRL...
Ellen’s Stardust Diner – I LOVE IT, LOVE IT, LOVE IT. Go there for lunch on the FIRST DAY…and if you like their fabulous singing wait staff as much as I do, you’ll go back several times…it’s centrally located, a very short walk from Times Square (51st & Broadway) and you get to hear some GREAT MUSIC while you’re eating. The waiters and waitresses come to NYC from all over the country, to follow their dreams. They use their tip money to pay for singing classes, dancing classes and acting lessons. Be a big tipper...
New York City Public Library – OF COURSE you should go here. Take a picture in front, maybe by the Lions…then walk on those magnificent marble floors. I always explain to everybody that the reason we HAVE free libraries is because of this building. I’ve never taken the tour, but I’d love to. Be sure to go up to the Rose Reading room and TAKE A PICTURE. There is a fabulous little gift shop.
Rockefeller Center -- One of my favorite spots in the city. The architecture is so stunning – just LOOK UP. They reopened the “Top of the Rock” – and it is the best view of the city. When you go on the website, you’ll see there are tours available…you’ll have to decide whether or not your child would enjoy a tour of the NBC studios, etc. Hey, I’m not saying you have to go there at 6:00 to stand outside the TODAY show (although I am highly recommending it)…but you might want to schedule a tour of Radio City Music Hall… I’ve taken that tour and it is excellent -- you get to meet a Rockette!!
St. Patrick’s Cathedral – After visiting Rockefeller Center, of course, you’ll want to visit St. Patrick’s. I always light a few candles and say a few prayers here…(and, they have a very interesting little gift shop if your child wants to take home a few souvenirs …I’m just sayin’…
Sak’s Fifth Avenue – also during the Rockefeller Center portion of your visit – you’ll want to pay special attention to the WINDOWS here – and one day, she’ll come back to see the Christmas windows – and she’ll remember the FIRST time she saw them, with her Grandma (this is an important picture to get)…
WALK UP 5th Avenue. I love this stretch…straight up 5th Avenue from Sak’s – past Tiffany’s and Trump Tower – go all the way to 59th Street – then walk across (this skirts Central Park – and all the horse & carriages are parked here) – until you get to
THE PLAZA HOTEL…Of course, you MUST GO TO THE PLAZA…Oh My God. And I hope you read “Eloise at the Plaza”…They have completely remodeled it – but the crystal chandeliers and Palm Court have magnificent opulence. The afternoon tea here is too much for my budget…but it’s a beautiful place to walk through, and the basement had a lovely little coffee shop with German pastries, (but when I tried to take Debbie there last winter, it was closed for remodeling.)
The Lincoln Center AND, if your grandchild loves dance – this is a wonderful place to see. They have tours going on all the time ($15, $12 student)…check out the website – they often have young artist programs or performances.
Macy’s at 34th Street. Make sure to WATCH THE MOVIE…Miracle on 34th Street…THEN, take a few minutes to sit in the little triangle park that is called Herald’s Square. Here’s the best part of this stop – every year, for the rest of her life, she will watch the Thanksgiving Day Parade and be able to say, “I was there with my Grandma”…
Staten Island Ferry – this is as close as you need to get to the Statue of Liberty. AND it’s a great subway ride…free boat ride, of course…fabulous ferry…this would take some time…and at the end of the day, it is a very impressive boat ride.
Metropolitan Museum of Art – Of course you should go here. Sooner or later -- the steps of this magnificent building are on every television show set in New York City. How much time you spend INSIDE the museum depends on your child. Sometimes, just visiting the lobby and the gift shop is enough.
Serendipity: The original home of the FROZEN HOT CHOCOLATE. Whatever you do – JUST GET ONE…and share it. A wonderful quirky place for lunch – or, a great stop for a 3:00 pick-me-up. Try to sit UPSTAIRS
225 East 60th Street
between 2nd and 3rd Avenues
New York, NY
Sun-Thur 11:30am to midnight
Friday 11:30am to 1:00am
Saturday 11:30am to 2:00am
Dylan’s Candy Bar: the MOST CANDY you will ever see in your life. Owned by Dylan Lauren (daughter of Ralph) – she has done a great job building a unique business…a short walk from Serendipity…
1011 Third Ave
New York, NY 10021
Subway: N, R, W, 4, 5, 6 to 59th St/Lexington Ave
Sun- 10 AM-9 PM
Mon-Thurs- 10 AM-10 PM
Fri/Sat- 10 AM-11 PM