There’s lots of exciting things to see in the Big Apple – Central Park, Broadway shows and Times Square – but for me it’s all about the bookstores, coffee shops and cocktails.
My trips to NYC always begin at The Strand. The Strand Bookstore opened in 1927 and is a day trip in itself. I’ve been there numerous times and have yet to make it to the second floor. I always purchase a notebook and a book that takes place in NYC. This last trip I bought The Odd Woman and the City, which is a memoir by Vivian Gornick. I have to limit myself otherwise all my mad money would be spent on books. That would be a lot to carry back to the Jane Hotel which is quite a hike from the Strand!
I have several coffee shops I frequent when in the West Village. My favorites are The Hudson Cafe – which also serves an awesome breakfast burrito – The Bean, and Kava Cafe. All three are wonderful and worth checking out next time you’re in the city.
No trip is complete without a visit to the altar of Dorothy Parker. The Algonquin Hotel spent many years as host to The Vicious Circle, a group started by Dorothy Parker and Robert Benchley not long after the end of WWI. They met everyday for lunch along with other writers and editors of Vanity Fair and The New Yorker. Their table was reserved for them and became known as the Algonquin Round Table. The Algonquin Hotel is now a National Literary Landmark.I sit at the same table each visit and order my favorite drink – a Dorothy Parker, of course!
The Algonquin Hotel’s Dorothy Parker
5-6oz. of gin (there’s even a brand called Dorothy Parker!)
1/2oz. St. Germain
Lemon, honey and basil to taste.
Shake. Pour. Enjoy!
Readers: Hope you have enjoyed my mini tour of NYC. Please tell me about your favorite spots in the city in the comments!
Awesome, Kim. I visited the Mysterious Bookshop last time I was there because I’d heard so much about it. Floor-to-high-ceiling bookshelves – all filled with crime fiction! And yes, they have a cozy section.
Adding that to my agenda in May.
I haven’t been to NYC since I was in 5th grade so I don’t have a favorite spot. But you certainly make me want to go stay in The Jane and visit all of these places.
Let’s go! We need a field trip.
Wait. How is this possible? Road trip!
My dad and I used to meet for breakfast at the Algonquin sometimes. He LOVED their oatmeal, which was amazing. I heard they redesigned the restaurant and the famed table isn’t there, but hopefully I’m wrong.
I’m not going to swear to it, but I’m pretty sure the table near the painting of the Vicious Circle is “the” table. Now I am on a mission to find out.
On our most recent trip to New York, I insisted that my sister and I stay at the Algonquin. She thought I was nuts (her first choice was the Marriott), but I loved it. And then there’s Connolly’s Pub (44th ? St.), where I took one look at the a guy who had to be the owner, based by the way he walked in, and told my sister, “he’s a cop.” I was right, and we chatted with him about the pub. No, no relatives there, but it’s got good pub grub.
I must try Connelly’s Pub now. It’s on the list.
Sounds like some great spots to visit. If I ever make it there, I’ll have to make sure I hit all your recommendations.
You must visit NYC at least once. There’s no other place like it!
Was just there in NYC doing research. Also took some time to research drinks in The Club Room of Hotel Elysée. Very productive trip as best I can tell.
Do tell! I love to research drinks. That’s what I did at the Algonquin…um, yeah, sure it was research.
I’m keeping a list of your recommendations, Kim. What a wonderful trip you had!
It is wonderful every time I go to the West Village! I really love it there.
Not really a fan of NYC since the weather never seems to cooperate when I’m there, but I might have to go see these bookstores, and of course the 9-11 memorial.
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