"A bad day in New York City is still better than a good day anywhere else"
I saw this quote somewhere the other day and I thought it seemed fitting when I sat down to write this post. My visit to NYC this past weekend did not end up going quite as planned; sadly, my sister and her bf ended up having to go out of town unexpectedly for a personal matter. I won't go into detail out of respect for their privacy, but basically I ended up having a few days by myself in the Big Apple. However, things worked out just fine for me because I ended up getting together with a couple of my friends who live in the city, plus I also actually had fun having some alone time to relax!
Most of all, I think this visit to NYC really reminded me just how much I truly love this city. There is an energy in New York that's completely unique and I seriously feel so at home every time I'm there. It's just such a special place for me that I really don't even know how to describe it...and you know if I am at a loss for words, that's saying something! Even though it was chilly this weekend, the city was still gorgeous and I had so much fun walking around. Friday, I managed to snap a few pictures of the afternoon sunshine in Central Park and just looking back through them now makes me really happy :)
I love love love Central Park, it's such a gorgeous part of the city!
So what else did I do during my time in NYC?
I shopped...of course :)
My sister has great style, so shopping with her is always a lot of fun...but shopping her closet is best of all! She's basically the opposite of a hoarder and if she hasn't worn something in like a month, she's usually like "Take it, it's yours!" I definitely picked up a few new pieces to take home from things she was getting rid of, including a some fun pairs of flats! She's also really great about knowing about obscure brands that I've never heard of, and this trip she turned me on to French Sole flats. They make a super basic ballet flat (they have other styles too, but their flats are what they're known for) and their shoes seem like they are really well made. They actually have an outlet store at 71st & Lexington where I found two additional pairs of flats for a steal, so I think I'm set for spring on shoes!
I love browsing at all different stores when I'm in NYC, but when it comes to actually buying stuff, I typically stick to relatively budget-friendly standards like H&M or Zara. However, one of my favorites that I try to hit up whenever I'm in New York is Uniqlo. I've loved this store ever since I first bought an inexpensive pair of jeans here in London after forgetting to pack them on our backpacking trip in 2010 (I know, who forgets to pack jeans?). They have them throughout Europe, but only have a very few locations in the US right now. I just really like the store because it's so simple and they have really fantastic basics that are super inexpensive. I stocked up on a few classic staple pieces (like gorgeous cashmere sweaters for only $30 each!) during my visit that I know I'll get lots of use out of.
Other than shopping, I indulged in my standard NYC mani/pedi (seriously, it's they are so ridiculously cheap there, I can't resist!). I also ended up taking a class with one of my girlfriends from college at SoulCycle; I had heard so much about these trendy spin classes that I was really interested to try them out. The class was super fun and flew by, so I'm glad I got to try it while I was in town!
So that's about it for my trip to NYC...I feel like I'm forgetting something...
Oh right...I ate.
Lots of delicious food.
As per the usual with any vacation.
I tried out quite a few new-to-me places this trip, so here are a few that I remembered to photograph!
(That hot dog was a random snack I got while shopping and it was just OK...but I know they're something New York is known for so I figured it was worth a try!)
Jack's Wife Freda
This restaurant in Soho is one of my sister's go-to brunch spots and so it was fun to get lunch here with her on Friday. Their menu definitely has a Mediterranean vibe and I enjoyed the green shakshuka and house-cured duck bacon that I ordered (pictured in that second photo). I also loved the malva pudding (last photo) that we split for dessert, it was really really good!
This is another fun and girly Soho spot that I'd highly suggest if you're visiting NYC in the winter! They have very beautiful chocolates for sale in their gorgeously-decorated shop, and then they also have a lovely cafe where they serve the most decadent varieties of hot chocolate, along with delicious pastries. I bought a pretty tin of hot chocolate to take home, and so I'm excited to enjoy that soon!
Glaser's Bake Shop
I was interested in checking this place out after reading in a blurb in New York Magazine on how they make great black and white cookies (which I love). The bakery has been open for over 100 years and totally feels like stepping back in time! Definitely a fun stop if you find yourself on the UES.
So apparently this bakery is a big deal in Paris and they've now opened a few locations in NYC. My sister and I had brunch at their Upper East Side location on Saturday morning and I really enjoyed it! Their bakery counter was brimming with lots of amazing looking breads and pastries and the restaurant was bustling with people when we visited on Saturday morning. I don't remember what the name of my breakfast dish was, but it was basically eggs baked with ham in cream in a cast iron skillet with some cheese covered toast coming out the top. So yummy!
This is place is a very well-known tourist destination, but it had been years since I'd been here. They are famous for their frozen hot chocolate, however, on this night I visited it was freezing cold and snowy out so my friend and I opted for a giant sundae with blackout cake instead. If you are a dessert lover, this place is worth trying at least once when you're in NYC!
I'm already looking forward to planning another trip to visit my sister soon!
If I can't live in NYC, going to visit as often as possible is the next best thing!