I have dreamed of going to New York City for as long as I can remember. I have watched every episode of Sex and the City at least 10 times and just knew that NYC was a city that I would absolutely love. When my girlfriend and her husband invited my husband and I to join them on a business mixed with pleasure trip we were in!
I had been saving American Airlines points for something good and we were able to get 1 roundtrip ticket and 1 one way ticket with my points, so we flew to NYC from Vegas for $200. The trip started off on a winning note. We took the red eye flight from Las Vegas late Friday night/super early Saturday morning and I thought I had picked great seats when I picked the window seat and middle seat in the exit row for our leg of the flight from Vegas to Chicago. Well it was great because it was only the two of us in the row, however we were in the first exit row and the seats do not lean back, so that really got in the way of getting comfortable and being able to sleep for the 3 hours to Chicago.
Luckily we had a super short layover in Chicago and we literally grabbed a coffee and boarded our next leg to LaGuardia. NEXT STOP NEW YORK CITY! I was so excited, but so tired so I knew I needed to sleep a little, because as soon as we landed we were going to be on the go. This leg we were in the second exit row and the seats did lay back and were super comfortable, so we got a few hours of sleep. Lesson learned, the exit row upgrade is good, but only if you get the second exit row!
We landed at LaGuardia at 9:00 AM and could see the NYC skyline from the plane. Our friends we were traveling with were on a different route, but landing about 15 minutes after us. We headed over to their gate to meet them and headed to get our bags. Unknown to us our gates ended up being in different terminals, so my husband and I had to take a bus around the entire airport to get to our baggage claim. A little bump in getting our day started, but it was a good laugh. We finally got our bags and go re-united with our friends and we were in our black car to the CITY!
As we made the drive into the city, I was in awe looking out the window. I threw my makeup on while we were driving, because we weren’t going to be able to check into our room when we got to the hotel, so I needed to be able to just change my shirt and be ready to hit the town. I had worn my Spanx faux leather leggings and my new Vans x Karl Lagerfeld slip-ons and had a perfect top to throw on to look pulled together. We arrived at our hotel, The Sheraton Times Square, and as I got out of the back of the Suburban I did my best Carrie Bradshaw impression and shouted, “Hello Lover!”. We had arrived and the hustle and bustle of the city was in full affect and I was already in LOVE. We dropped our bags with the bellman and headed out to explore New York City!
First stop….Famous Original Ray’s Pizza on 7th Avenue for slices. Pizza is the breakfast of Champions! I have never seen slices the size of these. My favorite pizza is white pizza and their white pizza looked like perfection and it tasted like perfection. When you hear people say there is nothing like New York pizza, it is the truth.
Next stop after a pizza breakfast, a pub and right next door was The Irish Pub . It was a perfect Irish pub, with dark wood and our bartender was from Ireland. I love visiting bars in cities other than Vegas, because there are no slot machines in the bar. I started off with an Irish coffee of course and they made their’s super fancy with an Irish flag in the whip cream. That was the perfect pick me up, then it was time for a pear cider and they had one of my favorites Magners. And to top off our stop in this pub they had Irish crisps, Taytos Cheese and Onion. Crisps are potato chips in Ireland and England and they are so much better than American potato chips.
We got a text that our room was ready, so we headed back to the hotel to get checked in and unpacked. We got unpacked and requested every available hanger in the hotel to hang up clothes for 4 adults. We were on the 28th floor and had a great view down onto 7th Avenue. After freshening up it was time to head back out.
We started our walk by heading up to Radio City Music Hall and to our surprise there was a street festival going on, so the street was closed off to traffic and we could walk along and check out so many food vendors. The street food in New York City is AMAZING! Seeing the famous Radio City Music Hall was so neat and photographed amazing for me.
Next up, Rockefeller Center. They were just starting to put together the ice rink, it was still too warm to have an ice rink out. It was so cool to see that plaza with all of the different flags surrounding it.
Around the corner we came upon St. Patrick’s Cathedral which was absolutely breathtaking from the outside. We went in and I was in complete awe of the beauty of this huge Cathedral. There was a wedding being performed while we were inside and we got to hear the pipe organ play. I love the pipe organ from my childhood attending an old Lutheran church in Louisville, KY. We took in the beauty and lit a candle.
It was time to hit another pub for some refreshment and we came across Connolly’s Pub. It was another great Irish pub and the bartender was a great older gentleman that had a great personality and sense of humor. The bar had a slight lean to it, so you had to hang on to your drinks or they would slide down the bar. As we were enjoying our cocktails we started talking about where we wanted to have dinners during our visit and we had all watched a Travel Channel episode about steak and saw a famous steakhouse in Brooklyn called Peter Lugger’s. We got on the phone to try and get a reservation and after about a half an hour of a busy signal we got through. We were lucky enough that they had one reservation available during our visit for Tuesday night at 9:45 PM.
It was time to move on and we wanted to find a cool roof top bar to view the Empire State Building. We came across the New York Public Library, which was on my Sex and the City sites list. As Carrie Bradshaw explained it is home of all of the great love letters!
As we walked the streets we saw the Chrysler Building and finally the Empire State Building. What a beautiful site to see. It really does put you in an Empire State of Mind! We came across Marriott Vacation Club Pulse that had a rooftop bar Top of the Strand. This bar was literally across from the Empire State Building and had amazing views and Aperol Spritz cocktails, one of my favorites. We got there right at sunset and got to see the transformation of the city from day to night.
After a few cocktails here it was time to head back to Times Square for dinner at our friend’s favorite restaurant, Rosie O’Grady’s. We sat at the bar and had cocktails while we waited for a table. Once we were seated it was time for me to finally have a Cosmopolitan. I had been waiting all my life to have my first Cosmo in New York City. It was worth the wait. We had a Jumbo Gulf shrimp cocktail to start and the shrimp were HUGE! I had the lobster ravioli that so many of my friends rave about and my husband had linguini and scallops. Before dessert we had espresso. As a huge coffee lover I had never had espresso after dinner and now I am hooked. For dessert we shared New York cheesecake and creme brûlée. And when people say there is a difference in NYC cheesecake, it is true. It was much more dense and the best I have ever had.
After being up for almost 24 hours and being stuffed from a wonderful dinner, it was time to call it a night and we headed across the street to our hotel to get a good night’s sleep.
I hope you enjoyed my Day 1 re-cap, stay tuned for Day 2.