Spring Travel 2010: Movie-Inspired Trips From Philadelphia: A Dazzling Diversion: New York City
Hush now, you jaded East Coasters, you sighing, you cavalier, you big-city cynics, and remember that magic New York, with all its shimmer and swing. Remember the city that inspired the film that inspired women all to be Holly Golightly, flitting in and out of taxis (much sparklier than those you’ll find in Philly), prancing Fifth Avenue sidewalks in their most fetching ensembles, and — still, always — mooning over jewelry at Tiffany, where surely, as our heroine said, “Nothing bad can happen.” Gosh, what a place, and what a city! So alive and assorted, with its endless parade of characters, its infinite intrigue, and still that iconic Manhattan glamour that Truman Capote immortalized, with a little help from Audrey Hepburn.
The Kimberly, a 189-room gem tucked in on 50th near Lexington, recently underwent massive renovations, but the new modern luxuries (like the floor warmers in some bathrooms, and the giant flat-screen televisions in each room) blend seamlessly with rich Oriental rugs and glittering chandeliers that characterize the old-city elegance here. Better still: Once you drag yourself away from the mass of Frette linens and goosedown that is a Kimberly bed and venture onto city sidewalks, you’ll see that the hotel is perfectly placed within walking distance of the East River, of MoMA and the Central Park Zoo, and of bustling Park and Fifth avenues — the latter of which is home to the same Tiffany & Co. that Holly Golightly doe-eyes in the film.
The Kimberly, 145 East 50th Street. From $189 a night. 212-702-1600.
It’s classic New York, all the way. The ice rink in nearby Rockefeller Center is open — and will rent you skates — well into April. An afternoon at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is but a 10-minute cab ride away from the Kimberly. Take a stroll — or even a carriage ride — through Central Park. Shop Fifth Avenue (perhaps Bergdorf’s? Saks? Louis Vuitton?), see a show on Broadway, and treat yourself to a manicure at Elizabeth Arden’s Red Door Spa.
Rockefeller Center, 1250 Avenue of the Americas.
Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue, 212-535-7710.
Elizabeth Arden’s Red Door Spa, 691 Fifth Avenue, 212-546-0200.
The Food Scene
Breakfast should be at the Kimberly’s top-floor, retractable-glass-ceilinged Upstairs, with made-to-order omelets, fresh croissants, and an inspiring view of the Chrysler Building. And it’s complimentary through March. The hotel’s new restaurant, Arthur — a throwback to 1930s New York — opens this spring, but of course, your outside choices are endless. A few to try: Danny Meyer’s Maialino, a new Gramercy Park trattoria that’s the place to eat, and the still-buzzy Chelsea staple Cookshop, with a stellar wine list and nice twists on classics. Definitely hit up local favorite Shake Shack for a double Shack burger and the best chocolate milkshake on the island.
Maialino, 2 Lexington Avenue, 212-777-2410.
Cookshop, 156 Tenth Avenue, 212-924-4440.
Shake Shack, multiple locations; shakeshack.com.
The Photo Op
Strike a pose in Madison Square Park (Fifth to Madison, East 23rd to 26th streets), where the Flatiron Building makes an unmistakably New York backdrop. Bonus: Madison Square Park contains the original Shake Shack. How convenient!
It’s an easy two hours by car or the fabulous new Bolt buses (for as little as $16 round-trip; see boltbus.com), or you can Amtrak it (starting at $34 each way; amtrak.com) and get there in a little over an hour.
What To Get Before You Go
Omoi, 1608 Pine Street, 215-545-0963.
Dr. Scholl’s ball-of-foot cushions to comfy-up your stylish flats: It’s a stylish city, and it’s a walking city. Be prepared, on both counts. Foot cushions available at nearly any drugstore.
Try ViVi G. for the shoes; multiple locations.