As I alluded to in my preceding post, I have relocated to the City That Never Sleeps to pursue full-time professional opportunities within the hospitality social media and online marketing space, while setting up residency in a ‘deluxe apartment in the sky’ (maybe not as deluxe as George and Weezy Jefferson, but I digress…) on the Upper East Side with buddies of mine from the college fraternity. Now, I may be speaking a bit prematurely – as I’ve yet to land that, what I like to call, “job job”, otherwise known as a full-time permanent ‘day’ job that actually pays you, benefits and insurance to boot, and soon will need to tap into my Bermuda “cushion” savings to support my expensive rent and Manhattan spending habits. That being said, my first fives day as a Manhattan man have been all that I could have expected, being a fast-paced, high-energy Hotelie…and then some. The following will give you some play-by-play specifics about what I’m rambling about:
Day 1: Saturday, Dec. 3 – After a painless commute and move to the city from Boston (with the tremendous help of The Bodenlos household matriarch: thank you Mom…) I hit the pavement running by first grabbing lunch with the Social PR, Collective Media co-founder ladies Steph and Court (along with their big-time investor Jeff, who apparently knows Lady GaGa‘s entourage personally) before bolting downtown to St. Mark’s Place for a nice dinner at Cafe Orlin and then drinks at The House with some great, welcoming friends both new and familiar.
Day 2: Sunday, Dec. 4 – After some intermittent unpacking and arranging of my new apartment room (which, for those of you who appreciate Hitchcock films, affords a view that is straight out of Rear Window) it was off to Macy’s Herald Square
for a festive holiday morning of seeing Santa in Macy’s Santaland, accompanied by my adorable little cousins, aunt, uncle and his extremely pleasant in-laws – all gleefully in tow. Once we navigated and survived the lengthy line to see the Man of the Season, it was off to Bryant Park Grill for an expectedly delicious Sunday brunch, followed by some Fifth Avenue window shopping and a quick visit to Rockefeller Center for a tree sighting. Fighting the exhaustion spilling over from the previous move-in day, I summoned up the energy to go on my, now routine, 7-mile jaunt around Central Park Loop before, quite literally crashing in my comfortable Sleepy’s mattress for the rest of the day.
Day 3: Monday, Dec. 5 – Rested and ready to take on my first full week in Manhattan, I again hit the pavement early – this time for a second round of running the Central Park Loop before following-up and sending out job applications for digital marketing positions with YOTEL New York and Kimpton Hotels in NYC respectively. After this was checked-off, it was off to a classy Asian lunch with a good college buddy of mine at Nobu, a restaurant concept I’ve been very familiar with for years but have never been fortunate enough to try. Now within walking distance of The Financial District, we strolled further downtown after lunch to visit The World Trade Center 9/11 Memorial Site, which was a very well done, contemplative space for reflection and honoring the fallen. Once my buddy boarded his ferry back to Staten Island for the night, I stumbled upon what has to be the best Starbucks in Lower Manhattan – location: 110 Pearl Street. Not only are the baristas uber-friendly, but the sitting area offers a great view of Hanover Square which, in turn, makes for an ideal people watching perch; I will most certainly be back. The day neared its conclusion disappointing with a rather unspectacular quick bite at Ulysses Folk House, before the evening was quickly resurrected by an amazing Repeal Day Celebration hosted by the very sexy Bar Seven Five at Andaz Wall Street. The Prohibition-era party was a four-hour affair marked by delicious gin-based libations, flapper tap dance performances, and fedora-adorning jazz band musicians (thank you Dandy Wellington and Minsky Sisters for providing such a great atmosphere). As I tweeted out that evening, any party that was characterized by all of the preceding elements AND allowed me to rock my suspenders and fedora without shame was A-OKAY in my book chum.
Day 4: Tuesday, Dec. 6 – The following day began with a trip to my favorite Upper East Side coffee shop (sorry Starbucks, but it ain’t you…) the Little Brown Chocolate Bakery which I’ve already discovered has amazing cookies, hot chocolate, AND offers any nearby resident a 10% discount every time you go. Soon after, it was off to lunch with my frat buddy Keenan for a quick chicken parm at Manganero’s Hero Boy before securing my “mobile office space” for the rest of the day at a Starbucks near Penn Station (which, as you can guess by its location, was nowhere near as nice as my day-before Starbucks locale). The day concluded rather bizarrely with a “holiday” hospitality networking party at W.I.P (Work in Progress) in SoHo
which was a space marked by a mix of provocative, strange, and sleazy decor and behaviors by the “entertainers” that provided the window-dressing for the otherwise professional function. I use “holiday” in quotations because, if the affair was going for a holiday-theme, it missed the mark by a mile; holding the event in a Christmas tree lot would have afforded a more festive atmosphere. Nevertheless, the experience provided with lots of shock value and certainly will stay with me for quite some time.
Day 5: Wednesday, Dec. 7 – Braving the morning drizzle and dropping temperatures, I began Day 5 with yet another 7-mile adventure around the city’s best running track, flying virtually solo on the pavement as it appeared that every New York running enthusiast was either hiding out at work or hitting the treadmill at their local gym. Fortunately, my run wasn’t spoiled by the pending precipitation; however, the rest of my day nearly was. Unable to find my umbrella, I idiotically left my apartment sans rain protection which proved to be an ill-fated decision as soon as I stepped foot outside. Being pelted by rain on my way to meet a friend for a Mexican lunch at Cilantro nearby, the inclement weather continued to follow me around the city as I jumped around from Starbucks (for caffeination) to Jones Wood Foundry (for liquid inspiration). Once I reached my final destination for the day – dinner in the East Village at Cafe Mocha– I was literally looking like Andy Dufresne post-escape from Shawshank, saturated to the core however far from euphoric. Shivering and irritable, I sprinted home seeking respite in my warm apartment; a hot chocolate and two holiday sugar cookies later, I was a content camper once again.
- Hustle & Bustle: A Social Traveler Update (thesocialsonictraveler.wordpress.com)
- All Set for Your Own Big Shift? Usher in The Manhattan Movers (athingforcars.com)
- 5,000 square feet, Manhattan’s 40th Street: Yahoo will open a New York Studio (nextlevelofnews.com)
- Rothstein Files: Five Observations From Manhattan-Fordham (newyork.cbslocal.com)
- Manhattan-Based Trevi Retail Acquires Two Properties (prnewswire.com)