New York Journals

A southern belle in the big city- New York City

An October 2004 trip to New York by vampirefan

Circle Line Photo, New York, New York More Photos
Quote: This past fall, my husband and I decided to check out New York City. What an amazing city. There is such an eclectic blend of everything here; people, food, cultures, buildings, and more, all seamlessly blending as one. This is one trip I will not soon forget.

A southern belle in the big city- New York City

Best Of IgoUgo

Overview

New York City Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
What was my favorite part of NY? Wow, that is a tough one. I would have to say, by far, going to the Broadway shows. We saw The Lion King, Chicago, and RENT. The shows were amazing, and for me, it was a thrill to see a show on the Great White Way. Seeing David Letterman taped live was also fun. You should try to see at least one show while you are here. And the Empire Sate building. The views from here will just leave you speechless. Oh, and we had a blast at Toys 'R Us. Quick Tips: Plan well in advance, is my best tip. Try to purchase as many things as you can in advance. If you are going to be going to the Intrepid Space Museum, the Guggenheim, Museum of Modern Art, a 2-hour...Read More
Quote:
We found a really great deal on airfare: only $110 each, round-trip, on Air Trans. We were in need of a vacation, so we decided to visit New York City. I had wanted to go for years. I thought this would be the perfect opportunity. We went at the first of October, when I figured the weather would be more pleasant and the city less crowded. Thankfully, I was correct. A change of plans with the airline had us flying into Newark. After calling a hotel to make sure we could get into NYC, we decided to just stay in Newark. We stayed at the Holiday Inn at the airport. We were only minutes from the airport. At $50 per night, we couldn’t beat the rate. The hotel is very nice. The lobby area is very invi...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Holiday Inn Newark Airport
160 Frontage Road
Newark, New Jersey 07114
(973) 589-1000

Hard Rock Cafe

Restaurant

Hard Rock Cafe Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Okay, so no one comes to the Hard Rock hoping for gourmet cuisine. But with 100-plus restaurants in over 40 countries, they must be doing something right. Most folks who eat here do so for the atmosphere. Face it, this is as close as most people can get to a Kiss guitar. But the food isn’t bad. It is traditional American fare of burgers, chicken, pasta, and salads. If you happen to be in a foreign country with strange food, you may actually come just for the food! The walls of the Hard Rock are adorned with every type of memorabilia for the world of rock and roll. Items from people like Jimmy Hendricks and Elvis abound. They also pay particular attention to area musicians. In New York, of course, you ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

Hard Rock Cafe
221 West 57th Street
New York 10019

Planet Hollywood

Restaurant

Planet Hollywood Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Like the Hard Rock, most people come to Planet Hollywood for the atmosphere. Instead of wall-to-wall musical memorabilia, you will find wall-to-wall entertainment memorabilia. Here you will find all sorts of memorabilia from the movies and TV. And with their funky buildings, they are easy to spot. The New York one is very centrally located right in the heart of Times Square. Like the Hard Rock, American fare is what you find. The menu consists of burgers, pizza, pasta, etc. Try the pizza; it is great! The food is good and satisfies your appetite. Take the time to stop by the gift shop for a T-shirt. When we were there they had some really cool shirts designed by West Coast Choppers. If you have...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

Planet Hollywood
1540 Broadway
New York, New York 10036
(212) 333-7827

Hello Deli

Restaurant

Hello Deli Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Anyone familiar with the David Letterman show knows Rupert Jee at the Hello Deli. Located just around the corner from the Ed Sullivan Theater, it makes a great stop before you pick up your show tickets or while you are waiting to go back and be seated. If you have ever seen the deli on TV, it looks much bigger than it is. It is basically a small hole-in-the-wall deli. But the sandwiches are masterpieces. I got a chicken salad sandwich that was to die for. My husband said that the Ruben was the best he had ever tasted. When you walk in, you place your order with Rupert and then you have to squeeze you way over to the side to wait for your order. The place is tiny, so there is not a lot of roo...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

Hello Deli
213 West 53rd Street
New York, New York 10019
(212) 489-7832

John's Pizzeria

Restaurant

Quote:
Located very near the Nederlander Theater, this is a great place to take a bite out of some heavenly NY-style pizza. John’s pizza has the distinction of being the largest pizza parlor in the US. The building dates to 1888 and was originally the Gospel Tabernacle Church. Opening its doors in the 1920s, it has become a New York institution for both natives and visitors alike. The restaurant has been featured in many travel shows. I was watching the Travel Channel’s Food Crazy when I saw it. The inside of the restaurant is beautiful and offers some incredible murals of NYC. It has over 400 seats! But the most important part is the pizza. Wow! You will need extra napkins to wipe up the drool here. Thei...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

John's Pizzeria
278 Bleecker St.
New York, New York 10014
(212) 243-1680

Battery Park

Attraction

Battery Park Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Battery Park stands at the edge of the Financial District, offering 22 beautiful acres of greenery and a stunning view of the harbor. It is where you come to catch the boat to see the Statue of Liberty or the Staten Island Ferry. If the Statue of Liberty is not in your plans, you can still get a good view of her from here. While we were here, there was a huge cultural arts festival going on, so the place was packed. If you do plan on visiting the Statue, try a weekday visit. The Saturday we were there, I would guesstimate the wait for the boat for the statue to be between 2 and 3 hours! You can go to their website at to check out what is going on during your visi...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Battery Park
Battery Place
New York, New York 10004
(212) 809-5508

Chrysler Building

Attraction

Chrysler Building Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
If you are headed down 42nd Street towards the Empire State Building, make sure to take time to see the Chrysler Building. Located at 42nd and Lexington Avenue, the beautiful Art Deco structure was completed in 1930. For a while there, the 1,045-foot building was the tallest structure in the world. The building is still one of the most recognizable and photographed buildings in NYC. Inside, there are walls of red-veined African marble and Edward Trumbell murals. There is no admission, but you cannot go beyond the ground floor. While we were there, we only got a chance to photograph the building. There was a Polish Pride Parade in progress, blocking us from being able to cross over. We went to the Empi...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Chrysler Building
405 Lexington Ave.
New York, New York 10017
(212) 682-3070

Rockefeller Center

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Rockefeller Center Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Even if you only have time to stop by Rockefeller Center for a few minutes (like we did), you should. It is one of the most famous places in NYC, and almost a quarter of a million pass though here every day. Built by John D. Rockefeller between 1931 and 1939, it was the first real estate project to include offices, retail, entertainment, and restaurants into one development center. It still remains the largest commercial and entertainment complex in the world. Today it covers over 11 acres and offers everything from world-class cuisine to shops and entertainment. The famous Rainbow Room can be found here. Auction house Christies is located in the complex. Here you will also find the NBC Experie...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Rockefeller Center
49th to 50th streets
New York, New York 10020
(212) 632-3975

Staten Island Ferry

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Staten Island Ferry / Statue of Liberty"

Staten Island Ferry Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Nothing else stands for freedom more than the Statue of Liberty. Even though she sits in NYC, she belongs to all Americans. She has stood in the N.Y. Harbor since 1886, welcoming millions of immigrants as they arrived in their new home. She was a gift from France to mark a shared believe in democracy. She stands 151-feet tall and lifts her lamp up 305 feet above the ground. Emma Lazarus’s well-known inscription, "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breath free... send these, the homeless, the tempest-tossed, to me. I lift my lamp beside the golden door," is engraved in her book. To get to the statue, you need to take the boat from Battery Park. Since the st...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Staten Island Ferry
Whitehall Ferry Terminal
New York, New York 10004
(718) 390-5253

Guggenheim Museum

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Guggenheim Museum Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Going down Museum Mile, you will run into the Guggenheim. The museum was opened in 1959. Architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed the famous building. The museum's original art pieces came from the collection owned by Solomon R. Guggenheim. He had found his fortune in the silver and copper mines. The building is housed in the very well-known circular building on Fifth Ave. The structure waged a battle between Wright and the city authorities, causing it to take 16 years to finally be completed. Even today, not everyone in N.Y. is thrilled with the building. The museum is a collection of European abstract art and modern art. Its permanent collections include Picasso, Kandisnsky, Modiglianni, Klee, M...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Guggenheim Museum
1071 Fifth Ave
New York, New York 10128
(212) 423-3500

Times Square

Attraction

Times Square Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
There is nothing that says New York quite like the bright lights of Times Square. Times Square is the center of Broadway and the heartbeat of New York. At one time, Times Square was home to drugs, prostitution, and crime. During the 1990s, the Times Square Business Improvement District was born. They cleaned up the area and the crime. Today Times Square greets millions of visitors with its neon-lit signs, making it come alive at night. The heart of Times Square is around 47th Street, where larger-than-life advertising signs abound. Here you will find the theater district, shops, and restaurants of every type. It is one of my favorite places in N.Y. You can go to f...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Times Square

New York, New York 10036

Harbor Lights Tour (March through November)

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Harbor Lights Tour"

Harbor Lights Tour (March through November) Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
One of the best ways to see Manhattan is from the deck of one of the many cruises offered by the Circle Line folks. Located just down from Times Square, off 42nd Street at Pier 83, you will find their offices. They are located right next to the Intrepid. You can also purchase tickets for that here. They offer several cruises, including full- and half-island cruises, New Years and 4th of July cruises, and in the fall, Bear Mountain cruises. They also offer combination cruises. Go to their website at for more information or to purchase advanced tickets. One of their most popular cruises is the 2-hour Harbor Lights Cruise. The cruise starts out just before dusk. ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Harbor Lights Tour (March through November)
Pier 83, West 42nd Street & 12th Avenue
New York, New York

Circle Line

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Semi-Circle Cruise, Circle Line"

Circle Line Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
One of the best ways to see Manhattan is from the deck of one of the many cruises offered by the Circle Line folks. Located just down from Times Square off 42nd Street at Pier 83, you will find their offices. They are located right next to the Intrepid. You can also purchase tickets for that here. They offer several cruises, including full and half-island cruises, New Years and 4th of July cruises, and in the fall, Bear Mountain cruises. They also offer combination cruises. Go to their website at for more information or to purchase advance tickets. It is cold on the water, so bring something warm, even in summer months. They do have a concession stand downsta...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 20, 2005

Circle Line
Pier 83 West 42nd Street
New York, New York 10023
(212) 563-3200

David Letterman

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

David Letterman Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
While in New York, we got the chance to go to the Letterman show. That probably stands out as one of my favorite parts of the visit. The shows are actually taped during the day and shown later that night, still leaving you to have time for more fun after the show. When they call about your tickets, they will tell you what time to pick up your tickets. We had to be there about 2:30pm I think. You just head on over to the Ed Sullivan Theater - be prepared to stand in line. All adults in the party will have to show picture ID, so bring it. We were in line about 45 minutes. There will be a huge line, so you will know you are in the right place. We had to go through about four different stations and then g...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

David Letterman
The Ed Sullivan Theater - 1697 Broadway
New York, New York 10019

Toys 'R Us

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Toys"

Toys 'R Us Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Even if you are not carting wee ones with you, you will still want to make a stop at the Toys "R" Us, located in Times Square. You can’t miss its larger-than-life neon sign outside. Once inside, you will have to pick your jaw up off the ground. This place is HUGE! It is the largest of the toy giant’s stores. It covers three levels. I came in here mainly just to pick up something for my nephews. Once inside, I was so enthralled that I almost forgot what I came for. It has a 60-foot Ferris wheel located inside. Yes, even adults can ride. You can have your picture on the ride. The net proceeds for the ride go to children’s charities across the country. Kids of all ages (including adult k...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

Toys 'R Us
24-30 Union Square
New York, New York 10003
(212) 798-9905

Hershey's Times Square Store

Attraction | "The Hershey Shop"

Hershey's Times Square Store Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
If you are a chocolate lover (and who isn’t?), you will want to make time to come to the Hershey Store in Times Square. You can miss this 215-foot neon sign outside. Inside, the aroma of chocolate wafts though the air. You may actually gain weight just walking into the place. This is a favorite of all ages. Inside you can find enough sugar delight to keep you on a sugar high for months. There are tons of candies in every type of souvenir you can imagine. We picked up a couple of bears dressed like the Lady Liberty, with kisses that were a big hit. And you can find a great tin of kisses for $10, and after they are gone, they make a great storage container. I kept one of those for myself. Adul...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

Hershey's Times Square Store
1593 Broadway
New York, New York 10019
(212) 581-9100

Broadway Theatre

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Broadway"

Broadway Theatre Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
For the theater fan, there is no greater thrill than seeing a Broadway show in NYC. I have been going to Broadway shows for almost 20 years now. There are few things in life I love more than Broadway. So it was always my dream to see a Broadway show here. I got veklempt just walking around to all the theaters. This is where it all starts. Just to know all of the legends who have preformed in these theaters. Many still do. This is where the best come to show off their talent night after night to a stunned and grateful audience. There are so many shows here, a theatre fan could do nothing but go to shows. I would have loved to, but my hubby was not willing. I did get to see The Lion King, Chicago, and R...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

Broadway Theatre
1681 Broadway
New York, New York 10019
+1 212 944-3700

New York CityPASS

Attraction | "New York City Pass"

New York CityPASS Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Looking for a way to save money in NY? Then purchase a City Pass. This offers you six great NY Attractions for $48 for adults and $34 for children under 17. Your pass gets you into the Intrepid Space Museum, the Guggenheim, the Museum of Modern Art, a 2-hour semicircle or 2-hour harbor lights Circle Line Tour, the American Museum of Natural History, and the Empire State Building. You can buy them in advanced= at www.citypass.com. They are good for 9 days once you use your first ticket. Or you can just pick up a pass at any of the attractions. You save 50% by using the tickets. They also offer them for Toronto, Boston, Chicago, Hollywood, Philly, San Francisco, Seattle, and Southern California if your ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 21, 2005

New York CityPASS
Various Locations
New York

Central Park

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Central Park  Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
The first place we visited while we were in New York was Central Park. In a city so large, it is such a delight to find an oasis of peace and tranquility. This place is huge, so you will need to allot a whole day here, at least. Chances are, then you still will not see everything. I know we didn’t. Here you find miles of walking paths, a zoo, fountains, a boathouse, a lake, a memorial to John Lennon, and more. This is also where you can catch the time-honored tradition of a ride on the handsome cabs. Central Park was the first major park built in America. It covers 843 acres and runs for 50 blocks from the Upper East and West sides. There are several places to enter the park. Take note of where...Read More

Empire State Building

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Empire State Building  Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
No trip to NYC is complete without visiting the Empire State Building. Located on 5th Avenue at 34th Street, you will be offered the most amazing views of the city. As always, visit their website at www.esbnyc.com for more information. If you happen to have a City Pass, the Empire State Building is included. If you do not have a City Pass, read my "more information and tips sheet" to find out about one. The 1,250-foot structure was completed in 1931 after little more than a year. It weighs 365,000 tons and has over 60,000 tons of steel. In 1981, the NYC Landmark Preservations Commission declared it a landmark. Then, in 1986, it was added to both the NYC and National Registers of Historic Places...Read More

Madam Tussaud's

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Madam Tussaud's  Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Even if you have been to other Madam Tussauds, you will want to check out the N.Y. museum. While you will see some celebrities that can be found in other museums, you will also see new faces. We saw the one in London, but still immensely enjoyed this one. Madam Tussauds first started in London and has now spread to several other cities. You will be amazed at how realistic these wax figures look. You are just waiting for them to greet you. When we arrived, they had a figure of actor Samuel Jackson to greet you. Right after you purchase your ticket and start up the stairs, you will find a figure of Brad Pitt, looking quite hot with his longer hair (I, for one, only like Brad with long hair). You will th...Read More

The Lion King

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

The Lion King  Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
For a theater fan, there is no bigger thrill than watching a Broadway show in NYC, just the way God intended it. At any given time, there are numerous blockbuster shows being performed. If you are looking for a truly one-of-a-kind experience, then check out The Lion King at the New Amsterdam Theater. It is truly a delight for all of your senses. It is also a very family friendly show. From the first strike of the note to the final bow, you will be stunned. This is a story of a young lion cub named Simba. Simba watches as his father is killed and believes it is fault. It is really his uncle Scar, who wanted to rule over the Lion Kingdom run by his brother Mufasa (Simba’s dad). Simba runs away fr...Read More

Chicago the Musical

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Chicago the Musical   Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
If you want to razzle-dazzle while in N.Y., then razzle-dazzle yourself on down to the Ambassador Theatre and check out Chicago. The show features murders, sex, and lies… things, according to the cast, we all hold near and dear to our hearts! It tells the story of Roxie Heart, who murders her lover, and Velma Kelly, who murders both her sister and husband after a tryst. They both go to jail and subsequently become stars. The John Kander and Fred Ebb extravaganza originally opened June 3, 1975 at the 46th Street Theatre starring Gwen Verdon (former wife of choreographer Bob Fosse) and the legendary Chita River (who had a small appearance in the movie). The choreography is by the legendar...Read More

RENT, the musical

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

RENT Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
One of the best and most somber shows that you can see while you’re in New York is RENT. RENT had its world premier on February 13, 1996 at the New York Theater Workshop. It opened at the Nederlander Theatre on April 29, 1996. The show was the brainchild of the late Jonathan Larson. Larson tragically died from an aneurysm shortly before the show debuted. It is an updated version of the opera La Boehm. It takes the show and infuses it with modern day problems, including homelessness, drugs, homosexuality, and AIDS. Today, the show runs under the direction of Michael Grief. The show and the music are powerful and brilliant. The song Season of Love still remains one of my favorites. The sho...Read More

BB King's Blues Club & Grill

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Quote:
Located at 237 W. 42nd St., across from the New Amsterdam Theater and near Madame Tussaud's. NOT RECOMMENDED AT ALL! If you are out for a bite to eat before the Lion King or want to food for energy for walking around Madam Tusseuds, DO NOT GO NEAR BB KINGS. We decided to go to BB King’s restaurant before The Lion King. That is the biggest mistake we made while in New York. I chose this place because my husband, the guitar instructor, is a fan of BB’s. Now, my first job was as a waitress and I waitressed while in college, so I am very lenient with wait staffs. But there was so excuse for the sorry service we got here. We arrived more than hour before the show. The place was a...Read More

Advertising

Story/Tip

Advertising  Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
Nowhere else but New York could I come up with a section just to laude the virtues of advertising. Sure, we have advertising here in the form of billboards. But they are boring. Just plain billboards. But the billboards in NYC just pop out at you. And not just in Times Square, either. I noticed it everywhere. Here I found a HUGE beanstalk to advertise a loan company. The signs for Broadway shows pop out at you like glitter on a page. There are huge digital displays for TV shows. CSI: NY was being very heavily promoted while we were there. And the advertisements for movies will have even the most cynical person chuckling. Shark Tale was playing when we were in New York, so there were these huge bill...Read More

Planning tips

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Magnificant Manhatten Photo, New York, New York
Quote:
NYC is one city you will never forget. NYC seems to easily blend its varieties of cultures into one. There is truly something here for everyone, so get out and enjoy it! I spent 5 years as a travel agent. While it is not rocket science, there is more to it than people imagine. It does take some effort to plan a memorable trip. But if I can do it, so can you. After all, I have my BA in sociology and never took a travel course. One of the best pieces of advice I can give to anyone when it comes to trip-planning is to plan well in advance. I personally start thinking about a trip several years in advance. I keep a notebook by my bed, and when I see something or read something I am intere...Read More