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Dec 11, 2006 4:21 pm

My wife and I are headed to New York in a couple of days for the weekend.  We've been to New York before, but only for a day.  I'm a guy from the midwest and not fully trained on surviving in a big city.  We'll be there Wed - Sun this week.  So, I'm asking for some tips from some of you who actually live in NY or who visit it often. 

First, we've seen the WTC and Wall street.  I made her go there before anywhere else.  We did the Empire State Building, Staten Island Ferry, and had dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe on Times Square.  Not bad for a day trip.  What else should I include this time?

Second, how much should the taxi fare be from LaGuardia to Le Parker Meridien on W. 57th street.  I think I've figured out about $35, but I'm not completely sure. 

Finally, what's your favorite restaurant?  We've been watching Road Tasted on the Food Network, so we have a couple of ideas, but I'm looking for some more.

Dec 11, 2006 4:45 pm

Go to Sparks if you want a good steak combined with a bit of history.  That’s where John Gotti had his boss assassinated so he could take over the Gambino family.  Beware, however, that it is expensive.

Another cool steakhouse is Keene’s Chop House which is on 34th or 35th near Penn Station.  Been there for decades, historic even.  Great steaks.  Also expensive, but what isn’t in NYC.

Your price for the cab ride sounds about right.

Dec 11, 2006 7:52 pm

Cab sounds about right - prices just went up I think, so maybe a little more.

Depending on WHERE you want to go for dinner, you could do Peter Luger's in Brooklyn.  Still cash only I think, but the best steak I have ever had.  For Italian, I like Pulio's in Midtown (45th and B'way).  Little hole in the wall, but great owners and great food.  I used to go there a few nights a week.

Stay away from anything touristy or chains (i.e. Hard Rock, ESPN Zone).  You can do that anywhere.  Go for local fare.  If you're stuck, ask a concierge at an upscale hotel (Parker Meridien would do).  They are really good at suggesting good local places.

It's tougher in the winter for things to do, but you could do a show if you and your wife are into that.  But order tickets ahead.  If the weather is nice enough, head downtown to Soho, Noho, the Village, walk around.  Get a pastrami or corned beef sandwich for lunch at Katz's Deli (Houston St.).  THAT is living my man.  Hang out at a nice coffee shop after dinner and sip some espresso or cappuccino and get some pastries (PLEASE not at Starbucks - they're everywhere in America - find a local spot in Little Italy).

Anyway, have fun.  It's really nice this time of year (near Christmas).  You must have paid through the nose for a hotel...$400/night??  Do you live close enough to drive?  Don't forget the $70/night parking...

Dec 11, 2006 8:19 pm

Definately go to Little Italy and have dinner at one of the DOZENS of small mom and pop, authentic Italian joints there. The best ones I have been to are the places with 10-12 tables, not the larger varieties that crank out the food to the tourists. The food is excellent and the service is amazing.

If you are uptown, I would advise you to check out the Park. Central Park is amazing this time of year (escpecially with snow on the ground). A nice stroll during the day makes you forget that you are in one of the largest cities in the world.

Just 2 of limitless options there....  I miss it....

Dec 11, 2006 8:30 pm

mcsorleys. oldest pub in manhattan. teddy roosevelt, babe ruth and JFK have all drank there. google it and check out web site cool spot to have beers.

Dec 11, 2006 8:35 pm

web site is not where i have beers insert period or comma where you please.

Dec 11, 2006 9:01 pm

Not really a place famous for it's treatment of women, however.

Mr. A

Dec 11, 2006 9:40 pm

it was fun and the women in our group had a blast. however, if you are going to exclude all joints that have mistreated people 40-50 years ago you should immediately cross mcsorley’s off your list.

Dec 11, 2006 9:53 pm

Mcsorley’s is great, but has unfortunately become a tourist trap.  Usually a line out the door with people carrying cameras around their necks.  But really good beer (light or dark, 2 at a time)

Dec 11, 2006 10:46 pm

that stinks. last time i went there it felt like we found a place that people knew about just not everybody.

Dec 11, 2006 10:51 pm

Go to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, across the street from 60 Rock, where you can

watch the skaters and see the big Christmas Tree, followed by dinner at

Spark’s Steakhouse. You’ll have a good time, and you’ll be in with the Mrs.

for another year!

Dec 11, 2006 11:01 pm

Have you done the Museums? MOMA, Natural History so on? Been to Grand Central Station (that way you can say "We were there!" when you see those famous shots in all those movies)? And they just finished renovating it, it's worth seeing. Tavern On The Green, (better have made reservations) is killing two birds, maybe even three if you take a hansome cab ride through Central Park to get to the green.

Don't forget the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. And get up early and go be part of the crowd at the Today Show, or one of the others! Just walking around downtown, the Lehman Brothers building is  awesome, the whole wall of the building is a video screen, it's wild!

Mr. A

Dec 11, 2006 11:14 pm

Late night you can hit up Suite 16 or Pacha for some all night, ummm, “partaking” in the party and dance scene… Just be warned, after pulling an all-nighter and wandering out to the sunny streets at 2pm the next day, you’ll feel like a vampire in desperate search for a cab with some shade… AHHHH, the good old days…

Dec 12, 2006 5:07 pm

Thanks for you suggestions.  I should have explained that it's a Jones diversification trip.  I'm not ready to pony up $400 a night for a hotel.  I cringe when I write the $500 check each December for my timeshare.  One of these days...

We're going to see Chicago at the Ambassador theater Thursday night.  We'll probably find a couple of nice italian restaurants to have lunch.  I love a good steak so I wrote down the names you folks gave me.  Jones gives us food allowances for the trips, so I'm a little more free on spending when I don't have to kick in the first $50. 

Again, thanks for the suggestions.  If anyone has any more I'd love to hear them.


Dec 12, 2006 7:01 pm

" it's a Jones diversification trip"

Diversity they got plenty of in NYC!

(What's our diversity policy? Da longer you stay here da verse it gets!) ba dumpbumptisch

Mr. A

Dec 13, 2006 1:12 am

I'm heading to the big apple myself next week with my young children (3 & 6). 

Anybody care to recommend a cool restaurant to eat at for them after a play?   We plan on seeing the tree at Rock Center, skating etc....

Dec 13, 2006 1:42 am

There is a restaurant they talked about on CBS Sunday Morning called Opaque... Never mind, that's in LA

3&6? Are they restaurant friendly? Is the six year old a girl? The American Girl store is right around the Rock tree (and don't forget the FAO Schwartz trip, complete with a Barbi Museum (not the sort on Rat Race).

Sorry, nothing is coming to mind for kid feeding, Chinatown might permanently scar them with images of cooked ducks hanging everywhere. there has to be something Disney in Times Square