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First time to New York ….. advice please


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Hey all , well I’m more optimistic that cruises that we have booked are going to go , so time to start planning this one

We  are sailing in February out of New Jersey. Our group is two couples , and we plan on just sharing a hotel room , we definitely want to take in the sites so we are going to New York 4 days ahead of sailing , so need to know where to stay , preferably walkable to a lot of what there is to see ( 30 rock , 911 memorial, Monks restaurant, time square , bike Central Park , building on the led zeppelin album cover Physical Graffiti (fun fact Rolling Stones used same video for waiting on a friend) and take in a sports event or concert , I’m sure there is more as well ) 

So need hotel recommendations, or at least a general area where to stay 

Also need to know best way to get to cruise port on day of sailing , not big on dragging luggage around on public transportation 

Thanks for help in advance 

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Most of the tings you want are midtown, so I would do something in that area and then can walk to most of the things you want , I love the Michelanglelo hotel on 51st and 7th ave but there are cheaper places. If you do the 9/11 museum prebook it , that is in lower Manhattan. Loads of restaurants in midtown. 

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1 hour ago, Funbobby68 said:

so need to know where to stay , preferably walkable to a lot of what there is to see

From the sounds of it you want to spend most of your time seeing things in and around Midtown Manhattan-- so thats where I would focus on hotels. There are a plethora ranging from budget hotels all the way up to $1000 a night 5 star hotels and a ton in between-- it would be helpful to know a budget before making any specific recommendations. Also, New York hotel rooms are for the most part very small-- it will make sharing a room with two couples a challenge. 

 

1 hour ago, Funbobby68 said:

30 rock , 911 memorial, Monks restaurant, time square , bike Central Park , building on the led zeppelin album cover Physical Graffiti (fun fact Rolling Stones used same video for waiting on a friend) and take in a sports event or concert , I’m sure there is more as well ) 

4 days might seem like a lot of time but New York is vast and getting places, even places that look to be close by, can take a lot of time and effort. I would try and concentrate on a smaller area to make the most of it or if you do want an overview, spend the first day on a HoHo or something like that. 

 

1 hour ago, Funbobby68 said:

Also need to know best way to get to cruise port on day of sailing , not big on dragging luggage around on public transportation 

Are you cruising out of Manhattan or out of Red Hook Brooklyn? Some cruises also leave from Cape Liberty in New Jersey. Would need to know what pier to make a worthwhile recommendation. Ubers or Lyfts will most likely be the best way to do it, although a number of other options do exist. 

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2 hours ago, princeton123211 said:

Are you cruising out of Manhattan or out of Red Hook Brooklyn? Some cruises also leave from Cape Liberty in New Jersey. Would need to know what pier to make a worthwhile recommendation. Ubers or Lyfts will most likely be the best way to do it, although a number of other options do exist. 

4 hours ago, Funbobby68 said:

 

We  are sailing in February out of New Jersey. 

@Funbobby68 :

In general I agree with the recommendations already made.

 

Stay in Midtown Manhattan. Hotel rooms are usually small so unless you're sharing a suite you should get two rooms. There is such a wide range of prices that making a specific recommendation without having an idea of your budget isn't possible.

From Manhattan to Cape Liberty book a car service such as Dial 7 or Carmel Limo, or take Uber/Lyft.

 

How are you getting into town ? If you're flying don't limit your self to flying into Cape Liberty as long as you're staying in Manhattan. Look at the fares and schedules to all three airports, EWR, LGA and JFK. However going home from Cape Liberty EWR would be preferable as the limo or car service fares to LGA or JFK would be much higher and the trip to those airports would take much longer .

 

 

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We have stayed in what is called the Times Square South area. Easy walking to Times Square, 30 Rock and the Empire SB.  Plenty of places to eat for all tastes in the area.  Easy access to subway to get to 911 memorial and ferry to Statue of Liberty. Also, plenty of mid priced hotels.  Although mid priced in Manhattan might be more than you are used to.

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Piling on to what's already been said...

 

Make your travel plans based on total cost. NYC is one of the few places where it could make sense to fly into one airport and out another one, for instance. It might make sense to fly into La Guardia, take an Uber or car service into Midtown, and fly out of Newark at the end of the cruise. Don't get caught up saving $50 or maybe in $100 on a flight until you figure out the ground transportation costs. AND, you're crossing state lines, so whatever you do don't plan on a cab on the meter from Manhattan to Cape Liberty, or Cape Liberty to Queens! The car services already mentioned will let you price rides, so be sure to do that.

 

I like the "Times Square South", probably better described as Penn Station/Empire State Building area as well. Lots of hotels, and multiple subway lines to just about anywhere in NYC. But I'll also add to the chorus of you're probably not getting two couples into a Midtown hotel room. A lot of them won't even let you book more than two adults. Plan on two rooms. Honestly, a room for 4 could easily be more expensive than two rooms for two...  Almost anywhere south of Central Park to Penn Station is going to be OK. Better if it's along the major subway lines (download a map or look on Google Maps). The lines in Manhattan mostly go north to south. You've got one outing that's south of 30th Street (9/11 museum/memorial). There are other things to see and do in that area, such as the Statue of Liberty, Wall Street, Trinity Church, etc., so plan all of those for one day so you don't have to backtrack.

 

Madison Square Garden may be the most expensive place in the country to see a sporting event, so if that's part of your plan, plan accordingly. Maybe you'll get lucky and the Rangers will have a game and you can actually get tickets. Or the Knicks will suck, and they'll be giving away tickets (more likely)...

 

Back to hotels, if you have no brand affiliation, price everything. But be sure to price out, and understand, full service offerings versus business/family hotels. Everything is different right now, of course, but as a for instance, it's not uncommon to find a full service Marriott property pricing less expensive than a Courtyard. If you're a Marriott member, you'll get free wifi at both properties as long as you book through Marriott. You don't get breakfast at either property. Be sure to price (and continue to reprice even after you have reservations!) the entire range. You just don't know when a really nice hotel will suddenly become cheaper than a so-so place in the same family.

 

If you find what looks like a good hotel and rate, and it's cancellable, book it. But expect sticker shock! Come back to this thread and ask. Between residents of NYC and those of us who at least before 2020 travelled there a lot, someone on this board can tell you whether it's somewhere you should consider.

 

And, four days IS long enough to catch a Broadway show! It's the other side of the country, but as Canadians, you kind of have to see Come From Away, on Broadway...

 

And if you need more help spending your money, are you planning on eating out while you're in town? 

 

 

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Good advice to fly into LGA or JFK and home from EWR — even if air fare is somewhat higher that way, you will save a dollars on ground transportation (and hassle) to link the air to your plans.  In February, I would not plan on bicycling in Central Park - February is NYC’s snowiest/coldest  month generally so you should have activity flexibility.  You do want to stay in midtown Manhattan - any hotel savings from staying elsewhere would be offset by time and dollars getting to what you want to see while in NY.

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Ok booked a marriot courtyard on Broadway 1717 , seemed like a good price and reviews seemed really good , we bit the bullet and book one room , was 900 Canadian all in for the 4 nights that to me is reasonable 

will start to put a list together of the thing we actually have to see , and restaurants to seek out , will watch some Anthony Bourdain ,to get some ideas 

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On 6/14/2021 at 9:47 AM, Funbobby68 said:

Ok booked a marriot courtyard on Broadway 1717 , seemed like a good price and reviews seemed really good , we bit the bullet and book one room , was 900 Canadian all in for the 4 nights that to me is reasonable 

will start to put a list together of the thing we actually have to see , and restaurants to seek out , will watch some Anthony Bourdain ,to get some ideas 

Good central location - and at less than $250 per night, a good deal.  

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On 6/14/2021 at 9:47 AM, Funbobby68 said:

Ok booked a marriot courtyard on Broadway 1717 , seemed like a good price and reviews seemed really good , we bit the bullet and book one room , was 900 Canadian all in for the 4 nights that to me is reasonable 

will start to put a list together of the thing we actually have to see , and restaurants to seek out , will watch some Anthony Bourdain ,to get some ideas 

 

Good location. It'll be a small room, but if you don't plan on spending much time there, hopefully it will work. Bourdain had some interesting recommendations in NYC, so that can be hit or miss. If you like steak in a very old location, I'll agree with him on Keen's. If you're looking for a deli, hopefully someone pipes up because most of them seem to have become tourist traps. Enjoy!

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Absolutely would love to hear dining recommendations, definitely a good coffee shop for light breakfasts , and a deli , doing it right , and of course breweries and pubs . Not sure what else , but all recommendations are appreciated , 

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1 hour ago, markeb said:

If you like steak in a very old location, I'll agree with him on Keen's. If you're looking for a deli, hopefully someone pipes up because most of them seem to have become tourist traps.

Keen's is consistently very good (although have not been back post pandemic). Lugers frankly isn't worth the effort of getting out to Brooklyn-- decent steak but a lot of hype. I'm sure I'll have a bunch of folks come after me for that. 

 

I wouldn't afraid of tourist traps either-- Katz's Deli is a total tourist trap, but it is indeed excellent. The reuben there is the sucker's buy-- just keep it simple and get the pastrami or corned beef on rye with mustard. PJ Clarkes (the original at 3rd and 55th is the only one worth going to) is not quite what it used to be but still a great place for a burger. 

 

On the much higher end, Le Bernardin is not far from you in Times Square and is one of the top restaurants in the country (especially if you enjoy seafood). 

 

Most of the time when I'm in NYC its for work and I like going to a nice bar or two and ordering a little bit of food here and there-- there is a tremendous "eat at the bar" culture in the city. New York has some of the best hotel bars in the country. Some standouts (albeit on the pricier side) are the King Cole at the St Regis and Bemelman's at The Carlyle. More midrange options are Blue Bar at The Algonquin (near you in Times Square) and any of the 2 or so bars at The Ace (also not far from you). 

 

If you are spending 4 nights I would recommend making two dinner reservations and leaving the other two nights a little more loose-- unless you have some destinations you want to hit. 

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Wow thanks for the info , I’ve hear of bemelmans , think that will be one of the meals for sure , sounds like pj Clark’s might be the lunch deli . 
what about pizza ?

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Posted (edited)
29 minutes ago, Funbobby68 said:

Wow thanks for the info , I’ve hear of bemelmans , think that will be one of the meals for sure , sounds like pj Clark’s might be the lunch deli . 
what about pizza ?

PJ Clarke's isn't a deli, it's a pub. Famous for its burgers.

If you want real NY deli, go to Katz's, as was suggested. 

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I wasn’t impressed with PJ Clark, for pizza try Angelo’s just a couple of blocks from your hotel on 53rd and Broadway next to theater that Steven Colberts show is taped , you could also try to get tickets it’s free. For a very entertaining deli type try Ellen’s stardust dinner on 51st and broadway, there may be a line to get in but it’s not bad early, the staff is out of work broadway singers , they do constant shows , lots of fun if you can get in . My favorite go to restaurant is Becco’s on 46st between 8 and 9th ave , fabulous food , they have a full page wine list that sells for 33 dollars a bottle, then another list that could cost hundreds, for about 25 or 30 you can have 3 different pastas and a salad , they will keep refilling the pasta and it’s really good , owned by a famous Italian chef .

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4 hours ago, Funbobby68 said:

Absolutely would love to hear dining recommendations, definitely a good coffee shop for light breakfasts , and a deli , doing it right , and of course breweries and pubs . Not sure what else , but all recommendations are appreciated , 

I think that Ben's Deli is pretty close. 209 W 38th St.

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Let's keep in mind that pizza is a religion in NYC. Most of the classic recommendations are either in Brooklyn or well south of you. George is a fan of Angelo's; I love John's on 44th. Look them both up. I've never eaten at Angelo's, so I can't compare. John's is located in a desanctified (looked it up and I think that's the right term) church, and is allegedly the largest pizzeria in the world. And I really like the pies.

 

I will second the splurge suggestion of Le Bernardin, but look it up and the prices. It is consistently rated the top restaurant in the country, Michelin 3 stars since the first NYC list, and NYT 4 stars since it opened. Lunch (3 courses versus 4) is somewhat more affordable, if they're serving in February, but dinner for four with drinks would likely be as much as your hotel. You can also order at the bar, and split smaller plates, but the dining room is an experience. And you can share food porn with all your friends forever...

 

It all depends on your interests, and especially in Manhattan, your budget!

 

Enjoy!

 

 

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We tried Le Bernardin because of the suggestion on this board , excellent food be prepared to spend a couple hundred a person . Will try it again sooner or later. 

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On 6/14/2021 at 9:47 AM, Funbobby68 said:

Ok booked a marriot courtyard on Broadway 1717 , seemed like a good price and reviews seemed really good , we bit the bullet and book one room , was 900 Canadian all in for the 4 nights that to me is reasonable 

will start to put a list together of the thing we actually have to see , and restaurants to seek out , will watch some Anthony Bourdain ,to get some ideas 

Be sure to make timed reservation for 9/11 memorial ( great guided tour) and Statue of Liberty. Don’t try to go without . You don’t want to stand forever outside in the cold. And remember the Staten Island ferry is free for a memorable view of Manhattan. Think “Working Girl.” You can eat very reasonably in Chinatown.i assume you know about the same day discount Broadway tickets at Time SquareTKTS but there used to be a booth at the South Street Seaport where you could get tickets the day before. 

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18 minutes ago, Treasure Hunter said:

Be sure to make timed reservation for 9/11 memorial ( great guided tour) and Statue of Liberty. Don’t try to go without . You don’t want to stand forever outside in the cold. And remember the Staten Island ferry is free for a memorable view of Manhattan. Think “Working Girl.” You can eat very reasonably in Chinatown.i assume you know about the same day discount Broadway tickets at Time SquareTKTS but there used to be a booth at the South Street Seaport where you could get tickets the day before. 

I agree on tkts we use that for almost all our broadway tickets, but go to the Lincoln center location, almost no lines and you can also buy tickets to tommorw show .  An wait up to a hour at Times Square location, south street seaport also sells next day show tickets. 

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For Italian food ,stay away from little Italy but go to John’s of 12th Street ( no credit cards) and for dessert walk south one block to Veniero’s Pasticceria & Cafe 342 East 11th Street for cappucino and pastry. They’ve both been in the same place since 1894.  Considered the East Village. Or Near Washington Square  ( West Village ) is Jane’s . 100 West Houston. A reasonably priced American bistro. Really good drinks and burgers and delicious chicken.( half brick)

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1 minute ago, George C said:

I agree on tkts we use that for almost all our broadway tickets, but go to the Lincoln center location, almost no lines and you can also buy tickets to tommorw show .  An wait up to a hour at Times Square location, south street seaport also sells next day show tickets. 

Did you know that the original West Side Story ( not Spielberg’s) film was filmed in the Lincoln Center area in a condemned area of old brownstones just before they were razed to build the complex!

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OK folks. Four days. Four people. No comments yet on mobility. Most interests are in Midtown, except the 9/11 sites. I love SOHO and the Village, but under those circumstances I’m not sending someone to the Village for pizza any more than I’m sending them to Brooklyn for Lucali or Di Fara. And it’s February. Could by 7 or 70, but probably mid 20s to mid 30s. Yeah, 12th Street is doable from the Battery area, everyone answering either lives there, or travel the area enough to be really comfortable there. First time…

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