Let’s face it New York & Los Angeles are both beautiful, wonderful, & amazing, yet totally incomparable. We here at Minx Society are equally ever-so-passionately in love with both cities. It’s hard to keep up & stay in the know with the fast-paced ever-changing Big Apple, even for native New Yorkers; did you know Manhattan is only 23.7 square miles with a whopping 24,000 active restaurants & bars?! Well, we want to make it easy for you to fall in love with New York, here’s how:
1. Dine out!
New & notable Catch hit the scene last October, and natives, tourists, and celebrities alike are obsessed. It’s seafood with a flair set in a hip atmosphere in the Meatpacking District. With delicious items like Simply Cooked fish of your choice with sauces of your choice to impeccable sushi rolls to Cantonese Lobster (comes with 4 lobster tails!), everything on the menu is to-die-for (order the Creamy Basmati Rice & Lobster Macaroni & Cheese for sides) & we can’t wait to go back. Inside tip: there’s also a clubby lounge on the top floor, so divulge in some sushi and head up for some dancing all night long!
The Waverly Inn has been around since 1920! Set within an old West Village residence, the vibe is similar to that of Laurel Canyon’s Pace (a celebrity hideaway – on any given day you can find A-listers like Sienna Miller, Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez, Kate Bosworth, Karl Lagerfeld & more dining here). You will be welcomed with buttery biscuits & go for the Tuna Tartare & New York Strip Steak. Insider tip: definitely make a reservation days (or weeks) in advance & book a table in the garden area, it’s magical.
The effortlessly cool Beauty & Essex is a must for every minx! Located in the Lower East Side (think Silverlake vibe), enter through a pawn shop and get ready to be transported to a whole new world of “hip”. The crowd is cool & ready to get the party started. Best menu items: tuna tartare, lobster tacos, chicken meatballs, Korean style spare ribs, & Short rib stuffed pablano peppers. Best cocktails: Woodford Wilson and and the Meyer Margarita.
What would a trip be to New York without a proper Chinese meal! Go to Indochine for the best Chinese food of your life – this was Andy Warhol’s favorite restaurant. Get the Filet Mignon, sticky rice, Asian lump crab cakes, & wok seared brussel sprouts.
The legendary Beatrice Inn, once infamous for Lilo/Olsen twin smack-downs and disco ball smoke-filled late night dancing, was closed down in ’09 due to “overcrowding and building code violations”. Previously under the ownership of nightclub scenesters Matt Abramcyk and Paul Sevigny, this spot has been taken over by Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter just recently. It’s still packed with celebrities sans smoke, booze, & debauchery – transformed into a Greenwich Village cozy chophouse with a seasonal menu by Brian Nasworthy, a former sous-chef at the Time Warner Center’s exceptional Per Se. Call 212.243.4626. for reservations.
The boozed-up brunch is always fun to start your day right & bite the hair of the dog that bit you. If you’re looking for a top of the line brunch on a budget, Essex has one of the best. Young, rowdy hipsters and non-hipsters alike flock to this loft-like, edgy restaurant in the Lower East Side. $22.95 gets you a choice of any entree on their extensive brunch menu and 3 cocktails: choose from Bloody Marys, Mimosas, or Screwdrivers.
Balthazar is an institution in New York where people go to see and to be seen. Located in Soho, the glamorous space is mostly packed with rail-thin lookers dressed to the nines Insider Tip: it become a madhouse! Be safe and get a reservation! Order Eggs Bella Donna, Sour Cream Hazelnut Waffles, & Scrambled Eggs in Puff Pastry. Don’t hate the patrons because they’re beautiful; join them.
Located right across the street from legendary Pastis, Paradou is the perfect place for a glammed out birthday brunch with your girlfriends. The crowd is mostly filled with fashionista ladies – think Gossip Girl! An entrée with unlimited champagne cocktails is reasonably priced at $29. Insider tip: request a table in the garden area and rock your over-sized sunglasses! The cuisine is very European, we recommend the Wake & Bake & Omelette Paysanne.
Say goodbye to the 2 AM bar shutdown and hello to watching the sum come up, martini in hand. Clubs/bars/lounges are open until 4 AM – and the New York City culture is apt to party…hard.
Le Bain (pronounced Le Bon) is the Meatpacking District’s Standard Hotel rooftop club. Once you get passed the door, you’re escorted into an elevator and enter into a world of mayhem. The wild indoor dance party, fit with a massive Jacuzzi and bathrooms with toilets that face walls of glass giving you the most awesome viewing experience of the city, can get a little crazy – especially on weekends. Take the stairs to the rooftop, order yourself a crepe, sip on the Cucumber Lemonade, & mingle with some NYC babes amid sweeping vistas. For a similar experience in ambiance, crowd, & location – check out Hotel Gansevoort. If you want to grab drinks beforehand, stop by Revelry & sip on martinis in the garden.
Want to let loose amid hipsters & go-go dancers? Head to Westway, a former strip club, and favorite West Village dance spot among celebrities like Mary-Kate Olsen & Kirsten Dunst. Insider Tip: Tuesday is gay night.
Once a rather ordinary Cajun restaurant, Acme is now run by a hospitality dream team from Indochine & helmed by acclaimed Norwegian chef Mads Refslund and add a subterranean lounge with an oppressive doorman. Arrive by midnight (unless you want to have dinner here as well!) and look like you give a shit. You’ll be mingling with fashionistas, businessmen, and art-types.
Love the speakeasy concept? Get to Blind Barber, the spot that gives you your haircuts by day & cocktails by night. Walk through an discreet barber shop and into a bar filled with some of the coolest twenty-somethings in the city. If you’re into mixology, order the Smoke and Dagger (Jack Daniels, jalapeno infused Cointreau, lime juice, ginger and cucumber) or just get your usual straight up. You can expect a full on dance party here any day of the week, Tuesday-Saturday.
Don’t be fooled upon arriving to the unmarked door of Mulberry Project right smack in the middle of Little Italy – get ready to enter into a world of cool. Upon arrival, a knockout/door girl will ask you if you have reservations, smile cooly & say nope & she’ll let you right in. This place is for people who are strictly in-the-know (and also attractive). Taking the lead on the mixology trend, this bar is run by the people that brought you watering hole institutions like Boom Boom Room, RdV, Surf Lodge, GoldBar, Bagatelle and Milk & Honey. Start out with a table outside on the patio (complete with the best murals by NYC street artists) and tell the waitress what you like: fruit, liquor, spices, etc. They’ll concoct you the drink you’ve only drank in dreams.
Reminiscent of what was once the rowdy Beatrice Inn, Southside is a subterranean club in Nolita. With most of the clientele hailing from Soho/Nolita, it’s a genuine blend of uptown socialites, models and artists, jet-setters (Fashion PR wiz Kelly Cutrone had her birthday party here). You can usually find the door mobbbed, but just dress fashionable, walk up the front, & act like you own the place. Once inside – you’ll find a lot of smoke & a lot of people shaking their hips, hard.
Hipsters flock to this Parisian-inspired Hotel Chantelle on the Lower Eastside, which is made up of 3 stories; an enclosed roof deck, a 40′s style cocktail lounge, and a basement level private nightclub. On Sundays, they throw “SpeakTeasey” – an all-inclusive evening featuring a live burlesque show, prix-fixe three course dinner with the best items off of this menu, and drinks (tickets are $75). Insider tip: it’s packed, so if you don’t dig being in close quarters – don’t go here.
4. Go On Adventures
If you’re into art – definitely make an effort to check out: Museum of Modern Art (have lunch or dinner at world-renowned Chef Gabriel Kreuther’s in-house restaurant The Modern), 303 Gallery, Jonathan LeVine Gallery (for the best underground art in the city), Marianne Boesky Gallery, & Matthew Marks Gallery.
Central Park is one of the most amazing places on Earth. It’s a place for everyone with so many activities & unlimited people watching. As “childish” or “touristy” as this sounds, set aside some time to check out the zoo! It’s whimsical and not at all like your average zoo. Beforehand, get a nice, rather expensive lunch at the Boathouse (or just go for on-the-fly food via cart or inexpensive French food via restaurant chain Le Pain Quotidien). As far as Central Park concerts go this summer, some of our favorites include: Alabama Shakes (6/24), Beach House (7/23), and M83 (8/8).
For an easier “park” experience, check out Bryant Park, you know that place where New York Fashion Week is hosted every year?! Grab a sandwich at ‘wichcraft, take a seat at a bench, and enjoy.
Go shopping. For lunch, we recommend Mediterranean fared Antique Garage in SoHo – it’s totally charming in the middle of the best shopping in the world. Order the hummus (don’t hold back on dipping their homemade bread into it!) and chicken kabob & sip on homemade mint lemonade. SoHo shops to hit up: Alexander Wang, LF, Opening Ceremony, Phillip Lim, Topshop, Saturdays, Screaming Mimi’s, A Second Chance, Chelsea Girl, & Legacy. If you’re in the Meatpacking/West Village area, head to The Standard Grill for the best club sandwich, like ever, & shop at Scoop, Earnest Sewn, Stella McCartney, Otte NY, Albertine, Mick Margo, Aloha Rag, & Rag & Bone.
Venture across the bridge to Brooklyn. Shop at ultra-trendy zoë (featuring selections from 3.1 Philip Lim, Chloe, Alexander Wang and Lanvin and more). Saturday’s from June 5 – August 11, go to Celebrate Brooklyn at Prospect Park for free shows; we’re stoked on Dirty Projectors (7/10), Hot Chip (7/18), Wilco (7/23, 7/24). Check out the flea market on Sunday, featuring more than 150 local and regional vendors of antiques, vintage clothing, handmade items, jewelry, food, bicycles, records, and more.