NY – Looking for the best winter day ever in NYC? For some that might include a sample sale and a spa detox, but for others it may very well be simply experiencing a classic New York winter day. For us, this itinerary is a must at least once every season and the best part is it’s a fun day with friends, family or even solo — and it all starts in Central Park!
1.Tavern on the Green – If it’s the weekend, your first stop is the iconic and exquisitely renovated Tavern on the Green restaurant for brunch. Be it the Brioche French Toast Stuffed with Cinnamon-Vanilla Ricotta, the Gravlax with Harry’s New Orleans Chopped Egg Remoulade Salad or the Maine Lobster Roll, throw in a spicy bloody mary and all is right with the world – for at least an hour! Frankly, the Tavern really should be enjoyed for brunch or lunch to fully enjoy the gorgeous setting. No longer a gaudy eyesore, the Tavern’s new look is an eclectic melding of modern meets vintage (the light fixtures are stunning). Even though the place can accommodate up to 700 (inside and out), you’re going to want to secure your reservation in advance. If you don’t have time for a sit-down meal, you can always stop by their Green To Go take-out window for a light bite or coffee en route to your next stop.
2. One of the most enjoyable ways to pass the time outside in the winter is on the ice and there are two rinks within walking distance. The closest, largest and most reasonable is Central Park’s Wollman Rink. Not a bad idea to enjoy a morning skate before the crowds take over, or you can eliminate worrying about the lines and upgrade to the Holiday VIP Skate, which includes skate rentals, use of the heated rinkside VIP tent (for 3 hrs), snacks (plus hot cocoa and cookies) and a private locker for $68 per person. While you’re at it, if you want to sharpen your skills, take a lesson!
If you’re set on skating at the center of the universe, The Rink at Rock Center is a treat, even though it’s smaller and more expensive, it’s an exciting place to be (and easier to keep an eye on the kids than Wollman). However, the lines here could suck the joy right out of you if you show up at peak time. If you can afford to take the plunge, just once, splurge on the VIP Skate pass and reserve your time on the ice. Don’t forget to pack those skate socks!
3. It’s five o’clock somewhere and after an intense workout on the ice there’s nothing quite like a hot toddy or two. Among the nearby scenic options there’s Whiskey Park, located in the Trump Parc building. This upscale space features a big screen TV, pool table, a ‘small bites’ menu and a breathtaking view. And, the Stone Rose Lounge on the 4th floor of the Time Warner Center offers a more casual and spacious option, but an equally dramatic view.
1. Tavern on the Green, 67th Street & Central Park West 212 877-8684
2. Wollman Rink, Central Park South (59th St.) & 6th Ave. 212 439-6900
3. Whiskey Park, 100 Central Park South, 212 307-9222 (opens at 4pm)
Stone Rose Lounge – Time Warner Center, 4th Floor, Columbus Circle, 212 823-9769