NYC - Day Four (and a half)

Oy, time to wrap this up!

On our fourth day in fabulous NYC we started our day by going back down to Lower Manhattan, more specifically the Fulton Market. We decided to try and get some cheap tickets for a Broadway and heard that the Tkts booth there was one of the less known locations. Well Danny ended up standing in line for over an hour while I browsed shops and sat in the shade. I offered to buy him a drink or switch places with him but he held firm. Apparently it wasn't as 'unknown' as we'd hoped

Shortly afterwards, we made our way to the historic Pier 17 Market, a place I had spotted on our Yacht cruise the night before. There were plenty of food options including some great fish'n'chips which I thoroughly enjoyed. We browsed some of the little shops before heading back to our little hotel in Chelsea.

We washed up and got ready for a night on the town. One of the first things I had on my NYC 'to do' list was to see a Broadway Show and tonight was the night. I was so excited. We took the subway, something we had become pros at by this point, and made our way to the New Amsterdam Theatre to see....

drum roll please...

Mary Poppins!

I felt this strange mix of old Broadway glamour mixed with childhood fantasy. The theatre was absolutely breathtaking and popcorn and liquorice scented the air. We sat in our plush velvet seats and the lights were dimmed.

The performance was magical! I was so impressed with all the talent, not just the singers and dancers but also the set designers and lighting designers and live orchestra. I couldn't help but sing along to the songs (in my head... I promise I'm not one of those people) and was lost in a world of fantasy. It was such a fun experience.

When the show concluded, we headed back to Times Square (just around the corner) and stopped for a bite to eat. Bubba Gump's Shrimp Company fit the bill. As we were walking in some of the hosts were asking if we had a hard time getting in. Slightly confused, we said no, only to be informed that we had just evaded a bomb scare where all the streets had been cordoned off by police men. Haha, nope! Ignorance is bliss! I asked how frequently these scares happened and the waiter told us enough times to warrant a t-shirt that said "I survived a Times Square Bomb Scare". Fortunately, the situation had been sorted out peacefully and everyone was safe.

We enjoyed some of 'Captain Dan's Drunken Shrimp' and the 'Best Ever Popcorn Shrimp' before calling it a night -- our last night in the Big Apple.

The next morning we took it really easy. Our flight was leaving later in the afternoon and it was a bit overcast outside so we stuck around the Meat Packing/ Chelsea district. It was a nice relaxing change of pace from our otherwise busy days. After a bit of retail therapy, we stopped at Morimoto, a contemporary restaurant that infuses Japanese dishes with Western ingredients, for lunch.


Anyone who knows us (in real life) knows that we enjoy watching the Food Network or pretty much any show about food for that matter. Need I remind you of my Cake Boss sighting? Anyway, we had pretty high expectations going into Morimoto as it is owned by Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto and restauranteur Stephen Starr.

Upon walking into the place I knew we were in for a treat. This place was so sleek and cool. I later learned that it was designed by world-class architect Tadao, Ando. I could have just stared at the interior for an hour. Trust me when I say these pictures do not do it justice.


We were escorted to our table where we spent the next two and a half hours dining on delicious ramen soup (which did wonders for an upset tummy) a bento box with an assortment of sushi for Danny and tempura with salad for me, angry chicken and a delicious whipped dessert topped with fresh berries. The food was excellent and I would definitely return again.

Our delicious meal concluded as did our trip to NYC. We made it to the airport just before a massive rainstorm hit and spent the entire trip home reminiscing about our time in the Big Apple and planning out what to do on our next adventure.

I Heart NYC!


NYC - Day Three

Day Three in NYC was mostly one of obligatory sightseeing.

We started our day off at the Rockefeller Centre where we went to the 'Top of the Rock' to get an overall panorama of the NYC skyline. I'd seen photos online so had an idea of what to expect but was pleasantly surprised when it was better than I had anticipated! The wind was really blowing but I felt totally secure and was glad to have a breeze to cool me off.

Of course when you're at the Rockefeller Centre you're also at the home of NBC studios so Danny and I decided to pop into the gift shop and have a look around. It was cool to see various paraphernalia from new and old television shows. There were opportunities to do studio tours and show tapings but we had a lot on our schedule for the day so decided that would be something we could do on another trip.

We took the train uptown and decided to walk through Central Park across to the Guggenheim. I was really excited to spend some time in Central Park as it has always seemed to be such an iconic part of New York. The park was massive and beautiful just like I had imagined; a real oasis from the bustling streets. We walked along the Jackie O Reservoir while I enjoyed some lemon ice. But, the heat was the overpowering element once again so we just aimed to get across the park and into an air conditioned building asap. We'll definitely have to go back again on our next trip to spend some more quality time there.

While Danny's not a huge fan of spending hours and hours in museums or galleries but he is happy to come along with me and patiently wait as I take in all the sights. So for this trip I decided that the Guggenheim would be my priority. I have always been a fan of American Architect Frank Lloyd Wright but had only ever seen his work apart from textbooks or in classroom presentations. I immediately recognized the building as we came up to it and couldn't wait to get inside the lobby to look at the ceiling. Fortunately, photos were allowed as long as we weren't in any exhibits so I was able to snap a few pics!

After a long subway ride back down to Chelsea, and a stop at Nordstrom Rack, we returned to the hotel to shower up and get ready for a romantic evening on the water. I had researched some boat tours online before we left and came across one that seemed just perfect.

Just as the sun was setting, we boarded a 1940's yacht with about thirty other people and set sail. I didn't get sea sick (woohoo!) so could completely enjoy spending time with my main guy while taking in the sights. We saw the New Jersey skyline, the New York City Skyline, saw Ellis Island and her Lady Liberty. We passed under the Brooklyn Bridge, the Manhattan Bridge, gazed at the Empire State Building and watched a soccer game in progress along the shoreline. Probably the highlight of my whole trip!

It was an incredibly romantic evening and seemed like the perfect end to another fantastic day in the great city of New York. 


NYC - Day Two

On our second day in the Big Apple we made our way downtown to Manhattan. I was excited about seeing the skyscrapers and getting a feel for the energy of the downtown core.

First, we went on a tour of the World Trade Centre site. I don't think anyone forgets where they were when they first heard about 9/11. I was downstairs in the basement of my parents' house ironing my clothes and getting ready for school when my sister ran down the stairs and told me about what she had heard on the news. The rest of the day was a mix of students and teachers crowded into our biology classroom, trying to rig up some sort of tin foil TV antenna and watch the events unfold.

Part of the WTC Site in lower Manhattan.

It was remarkable to be on the actual site (nearly ten years later) and see how much construction activity there was still going on. Our guide was a man who witnessed the first plane hit the tower from mere blocks away. He spent the next few days volunteering at the site and helping out wherever possible. Although there were only about 30 of us in our group we represented almost ten different countries coming to pay our respects.

Listening to the Tour Guide explain the events of the day.

Following a panini lunch near by, we stumbled upon Danny's 'mecca' aka Century 21. Neither of us had heard of this department store before but within minutes of entering Danny realized he had hit the jackpot. The store was absolutely packed. You'd think it was Boxing Day (or Black Friday). Designer products were being sold at prices unheard of (at least for us).  We spent the next couple hours grabbing ties, dress shirts, dress socks, wallets, belts, and the like. I didn't even bother going up to the women's section because I knew it would be too much of a zoo for me (you may recall that I don't exactly love big crowds). The sales associate at the register said that the store was that busy every single day. Danny was thrilled and I was exhausted!

Next we explored Chinatown and Little Italy. Let me just say, you could definitely smell which district you were exploring in that hot hot weather, haha! Again, the streets were bustling with people and there was no shortage of things to look at and photograph. We ended up going for supper at a little restaurant in Chintown that was highly rated on Trip Advisor. There was a long line up outside so figured it was a good sign. When it was our time to go in, we sat at a large round table set for eight people. An elderly couple from Maryland who were celebrating their wedding anniversary sat beside us and we enjoyed sharing stories while eating dumplings and the like.

Hot, sticky, and satiated, we went back to our little hotel room to shower and relax in the nicely air conditioned room for a while. I'm pretty sure I had another nap (a common theme for the late afternoon) plus my feet were killing me!

But, sore feet and all, I knew that there was still so much to explore so later that night we ventured up north towards Times Square. I had seen this place many times in various movies but was still surprised at how bright it was outside even at ten o'clock in the evening. I loved looking at all the different billboards and advertisements. We checked out the Disney Store and were again surprised by the amount of people and kids inside. Don't little kids need to be in bed by now? Not in NYC! We did our rounds, took the obligatory photos and grabbed a couple iced coffees at a cafe near by.

Another successful day.


A trip to NYC!

I have always wanted to visit New York City. 

So when I found out that we'd be moving out east I figured a trip to the Big Apple would definitely be in the works.  Fortunately I got my wish and we decided to tie it in with my birthday celebrations.

We left bright and early on a Saturday morning (like 3:30am early). Okay so it wasn't exactly bright but it was definitely early. I think half of the GTA decided to depart that morning too because the lineups at the airport were the longest I'd ever experienced. Fortunately, we arrived at the airport 3.5 hrs early and made our plane in just the knick of time.

The flight was only an hour but I was so violently motion sick. Not exactly the glamourous start I had hoped for but after a couple hours on land I started to feel human again.

Our hotel was a little boutique hotel in Chelsea. Each room was modelled after a famous actor from the past. We stayed in the Tony Curtis room and boy it was tiny. I guess that is what's normal for NYC. But the room was clean, internet was free, a/c was on and we were glad to be on our little adventure.

A quick hearty lunch in the Chelsea Marketplace to get our day going.

On our first day, we visited the Chelsea Marketplace (home of the Food Network). It was an old warehouse that had been converted into little restaurants and food shops. So delicious and great character! If you know anything about traveling with Danny, it is that there has to be good food. I'm glad we started off on the right foot.

As we wandered through the shops, I just had to stop at this little boutique bakery, Eleni's. The delicacies looked delicious but even more importantly, I couldn't get over how cute the displays and packaging were! I guess that is the designer in me coming out. Danny politely waited as I took my obligatory food shots.

Apparently I wasn't the only one who thought these cupcakes were cute.
How awesome are these cookies?
A picnic to go.

Next we ventured outdoors into the sweltering heat for a jaunt along High Line Park. From what I understand, High Line Park was converted from an old railway/roadway built in the 1930's that lifted freight traffic 30 feet above ground through Chelsea and the Meat Packing District. This infrastructure project wasn't used after the 1980's and was recently under threat of demolition until a community group fought to preserve it. It was a pretty walkway but we didn't get too far as I just couldn't stand the heat. However, it did afford us the opportunity to get acquainted with what would be our new neighbourhood for the next few days.
Source - I was too hot to take photos so snagged these.

Soon we found refuge under a shaded area where there was a little breeze. I took the opportunity to bandage my swollen and blistering feet (a stop that happened all too frequently during the duration of this trip).

By this time we were both completely exhausted and so returned to our hotel for a nap. Three and a half hours later (yikes) we awoke and decided it was time for supper.

It was dark outside but the streets were still busy (not surprisingly). It remained hot outside but had cooled down to a temperature that was a bit more bearable for this girl. Danny had researched the best restaurants in the area and after a bit of searching we were able to find it. Room Service.

It was a dimly lit and stylish room that featured Thai cuisine. The menu seemed quite interesting so we sampled on a few dishes. I'll admit that it wasn't the best Thai food that I had ever had but the prices seemed quite reasonable particularly when we were expecting to pay top dollar.

It was also at this restaurant that I had my first 'celebrity' (and I mean that in the loosest sense) sighting. There were two guys sitting at a table across from us that looked eerily familiar. I couldn't place them right away so tried to ignore them however they were a dynamic crowd and I couldn't help but catch my eyes darting towards their table. Finally I realized that they had been on the TV show "Cake Boss" and had hired the bakery to make them a glamorous red and gold wedding cake and then a few seasons later a Moroccan themed anniversary cake. Danny (rightfully) thought that I was completely insane for recognizing them and we laughed about it on the way back to our hotel for the night.

So concludes our first day in NYC. I realize that this post was mostly about food, haha, but I guess that adequately captured it.

More to come in a few days! 


Fulfilling a Life Long Wish

A few days ago, I was going a little stir crazy being indoors all day long so Danny suggested that we find something fun to do outdoors that evening, I began souring the internet for something fun (and cheap) and unique to the city. Then I stumbled upon...

A free outdoor screening of The Sound of Music.

Oh Maria, how we love you.

Are you kidding me? It was like a gift sent from the heavens. My entire life I've dreamed of going to an outdoor screening and the Sound of Music has to be one of my all-time favourites. I immediately started singing "The Hills are Alive" and "I am Sixteen" and prayed that Danny would get off work in time to make the 9:00pm start time.

Fortunately he finished in the knick of time and we walked to the park. It was absolutely filled with people. The sun was beginning to set and there was a warm breeze passing through. We grabbed a couple chairs near the back (not a fan of cramming in with the crowds) ate our sandwiches that Danny had picked up along the way, and took in the magnificent skyline.

Once the film began the crowds erupted into cheers. We all began singing along with Maria as she cascaded down the Austrian hills. I almost felts as if I were in a movie myself.

Pardon the poor iPhone quality photo.

My excitement didn't fade as the night went on. Although I was exhausted, I was so happy to have had the opportunity to experience this moment in time with so many people who enjoyed the film as much as I did.

A wonderful way to spend a warm summer night.

I honestly couldn't have created a more magical experience if I tried.