As someone who travels for work, I write mostly about places I visit and less about the place where I live, New York. Therefore, when Carla, a great professional photographer in Paris, asked me to blog about New York and be a guest on her blog, I immediately say Yes.
Not only does New York never sleep, it barely reclines. (which suits well my personality). That doesn’t mean you can’t kick back and relax; there are plenty places for that. But if you visit New York, here’s a word to the wise: Pack your most comfortable shoes; Because Manhattanites may not nap much, but they sure do walk a lot.
I am very inspired by New York. I always tell people to carry their cameras. The streets are so dynamic, you can never know when and where you can get your best shot.
Here are some of my favorite things to do in Manhattan and some photogenic locations you want to consider.
6 AM: Grab your running shoes and head to Central Park. Start from Columbus Circle on 59th street and head east and north. Jog around the reservoir (named after Jackie Kennedy Onasis who used to live right by) and then jog back. Grab a coffee to go in one of the two cute little cafes at the entrance to the park.
8 AM: If you are up for a breakfast, my favorite place in my neighborhood is La Pain Quotidien Bakery on 58th street and 7th Ave. Even though it is a Belgium brand (don’t tell anyone) I still love the Parisian atmosphere it has.
11 AM: Head downtown to SoHo area where most of the stores won’t be open before 11 o’clock. Visit the Prada’s flagship store (575 Broadway) designed by Rem Koolhaas and for a minute you can confused it to the Tate Modern than a fancy retail store. Walk around the cobble stone streets and visit Taschen book store, (107 Greene street), Vosges Chocolate (which flavors are inspired by Travel locations) Kate Spade colorful boutique and I’m sure you will find so many more stores.
1 PM: Lunch time. Walk East toward Nolita (North of Little Italy) and make sure you get a table in Cafe Gitane, a French-Morrocan cafes. (242 Mott street). This is one of my favorite places in the city. Don’t miss their cuscus dish. Delish.
3PM: Walk down to the Lower East Side for a creamy dip from Il Laboratorio del Gelato (95 Orchard st.) and try out their honey lavender and black mission fig flavors. Lower East Side has become quite trendy in the last couple of years, crowded with new restaurants, bars, and gallery spaces alongside original stores with some immigrant touch
4PM: Get energized in China Town with a real Chinese massage. (107 Mott st) I’ve been going there for years. A little China town in Manhattan.
6PM: It’s Gallery time. Head West to Chelsea area and cruise with your drink from one gallery opening to another. Thursday is the day! Make sure to check some good ones along Gallery Line.
8PM: Don’t miss the Highline. New York elevated park. I love this place. so many shooting opportunities for Fashion and Architecture lovers. The highline starts from 30th street all the way to 14th. Get off at 14th. It’s the heart of the Meat Packing Area, where boutique hotels, high end fashion boutiques and best chefs restaurants are all centered in one area. Grab dinner or a drink in Spice Market, Fig&Olive, or the Standard Grill and for a second think you are in a ‘Sex and the City’ scene.
10PM and on it’s Party time: Dream Downtown Hotel and its PHD roof lounge has one of the most spectacular night time view. Drinks are a bit over priced but the view is for free.
2AM: Shopping after a long night of drinking can be dangerous to your credit cards, which is why Apple store on 5th Ave and 59th street is open around the clock. This is the time to shop if you want to avoid the crowd.
4AM: End your journey at the Juvenex Spa (25 west 32nd street) the only 24 hour spa in Manhattan. Try the Spa Foot Rejuvenation treatment because after a day like this you must give priority to your feet